The 6-2 185 Rudy Carpenter, like many other golden state residents, sees a lot of his hometown in the greater Phoenix area. "I'm from Southern California," he said. "And some schools are just in the boonies. When I went to Nebraska I hated it. I was so bored in Wyoming I didn't know what to do with myself. So, it's kinda of a culture shock."
"I've been to Scottsdale," he continued, "and it's a real nice area. It's as close as it gets to Southern California when you leave the state, as far as the people and stuff like that. It's a place where I would like to go to school, and play college football. It's just the whole package." And when we asked him if he has high expectations from his Jan 10th visit, he replied: "I guess you can say that."
The Westlake signal caller led his team to a 14-0 season and the CIF Division IV crown. Individually, he had a stellar season throwing for 2,705 yards and 35 touchdowns, with only six interceptions. He also showed great mobility running for 554 yards.
"My strong points are my arm strength and my ability to run," he remarked. "Some things I need to work on are staying in the pocket a little longer rather than being quick to run away. I know in college the players are gonna be bigger, stronger, faster. So I can't always run out of the pocket. I need to count on the players around me to make plays."
Thus far, Wyoming has been his lone official visit. Carpenter will visit Arizona unofficially immediately following his ASU trip. He shared with us his reasoning behind taking the official visit to ASU, and the unofficial one to its archrival.
"I like Arizona State a lot," stated Carpenter. "And that's why I decided to take a trip down there. I like Coach Koetter and Coach Helfrich. I haven't had a chance to talk to Coach Stoops or any of the coaches out there. They offered me a scholarship, but I don't want to take an official trip there when I don't know them. I just figured that before I leave (Tempe), I'll go down there and have a chance to talk to them."
The schedule for the rest of his official visits is a bit murky. On the Friday before he visits ASU, he will unofficially trip to hometown school UCLA. On Jan. 16th he will visit one of three schools: Michigan State, Colorado or BYU 1/16. Notre Dame on Jan. 23rd figures to be his last trip.
The academically qualified Carpenter participated in last week's CaliFlorida Bowl. Despite the outcome, he enjoyed the whole spectacle. "It was fun," exclaimed Carpenter. "We did lose 24-22 on the last play of the game. But the experience was great, especially hanging out with the guys at the hotel the whole week. You get know a lot of players, and these are the guys that you'll play against in College."
One of the players he associated with was Sun Devil commit and hotel room roommate Leo Talavou. Naturally, the offensive lineman was singing the praises of his school of choice in hopes that Carpenter and others will follow suit. Turns out he wasn't alone. "He told me how much he liked ASU," stated Carpenter. "Brigham Harwell also talked about them. Terrell Jackson said (jokingly) that if I go to ASU that's where he's going. I really developed a relationship with these guys. It would be fun to maybe play with them."
Aside from the words he heard from Talavou, the quarterback realizes why Arizona State could be a natural fit for someone in his position. "ASU has a balanced offense," he said. "But they also let the quarterback show off some things that he can do. They have a mix of a lot of throws, and that makes it easy on the quarterback to go through his progressions. It's a system where most of the time the quarterback will put up good numbers." Carpenter added that he didn't care if he didn't play his freshman year, but he definitely wanted to contribute in his sophomore season.
With several visits still on his horizon, will the quarterback truly wait until all of them are concluded to make a decision? "I can pull the trigger at anytime," he claimed. "If I had my choice, I would like to visit every school. But if I go to a school and I feel that's the place for me, I'll commit right there." Does that stand true with ASU as well? "Most definitely." He replied.
Carpenter listed his favorites in order as Notre Dame, ASU, and UCLA. However, he made a point of saying: "I wouldn't be surprised if ASU would be #1 after this weekend."
Carpenter Has High Expectations for ASU Visit
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