Introducing the 2004 Class: Angelo Fobbs-Valentino

The defensive back from San Mateo, Calif. was anxious to quickly finish the recruiting process, and leave home to go to college. Thus, when he tripped to ASU in early December, his second official visit became his last one, as he committed to the Devils before he left Tempe. DevilsDigest talked to Fobbs-Valentino about his recruiting experience with ASU and other topics.

The Sun Devils may have not made much contact before the senior year of Angelo Fobbs-Valentino, but preceded to move quickly once their eyes landed on this talented player. "ASU contacted me in September of my senior season," said Fobbs-Valentino. "My coach told me that ASU offered me a scholarship, and Coach Fidler called me the same day. I was excited about it. I had no idea they were interested in me."

The safety said that before ASU, he had received offers from Wyoming, Colorado, and hometown school Cal, the only school he visited aside from ASU. Utah was the only other major school to extended a scholarship offer after ASU did. Most of the Pac-10 didn't heavily pursue him, and that was a factor that motivated him through out his senior season. Regardless of the colleges that did or did not recruit him, he knew his final destination was likely to be away from home. "I don't travel that much," Fobbs-Valentino explained. "So I liked the idea of going to college out of state. I wanted to experience living in another state and get away from home. Even though Cal offered me and they were close to home, I knew I wanted to go out of state."

Naturally, his trip to the Valley of the Sun was very successful. The safety didn't only want to get away from home, but also go to the school in an environment quite different than the bay area. "Tempe isn't a big city like San Francisco or Oakland," he remarked. "It's a quieter place, not too many cars around (smile)…I liked the campus too. It was real beautiful, and everything is close together."

Fobbs-Valentino was coached at Serra High by Patrick Walsh whose brother, Nick Walsh, is a member of the ASU baseball team. Nonetheless, the freshman to-be didn't think that Coach Walsh's affiliation with the Sun Devils was a major factor is his decision. "It didn't really affect me that much," he recalled. "I knew a lot of other people who experienced ASU, like my defensive coach Mike Langridge (who played for the Sun Devils in 94-95). Before my visit those guys were telling me ‘you're gonna be a Sun Devil (smile)'…I did have an open mind, but I did want to get the recruiting process done with. I wanted go somewhere where my family can watch me play or come see me. ASU being in the Pac-10 really helped."

The Junipero Serra high school star was named first-team all-league as a running back and as a defensive back. However, his preferences clearly lie on one side of the ball. "I pretty much see myself as a defensive back," he said. "I did have fun playing running back, and I'll get to run the ball returning kicks. I really like to play on special teams. When I catch a kick or punt I'm already thinking about where the hole or open space will be so I can break away and run down the field. But even though special teams is exciting, playing defense is what I like the best."

When asked to self assess his skills at safety, he replied: "I love to hit, and I can find the ball and wide receiver because I have good speed and good field vision. I have good recovery speed, so if someone beats me deep I can always catch them. I need to get better with my footwork and agility."

Aside from being an accomplished football player, one of the newest Sun Devils is a very skilled track and field runner. He was the league champion in the 200-meters and the 400-meters, and earlier this month he won the 400m race in the Oakland invitational. "I was running track to help me be faster in football, and that it did. It helped me with my quickness too. Having a good 40 (yard dash) time helps you in recruiting." Not only does he exhibit his skills on the track, but off the track he's grooming younger athletes in this sport – a task he finds very rewarding. "I coach a track and field at a middle school, and I really enjoy it. I didn't know that I would enjoy so much watching kids develop. Coaching is maybe something I'd like to later in life."

In his senior season, Fobbs-Valentino ran for 920 yards on 76 carries scoring 15 touchdowns. He also shined as a kick returner, amassing 472 yards and two touchdowns. Ultimately, he knows that his performance in August will go a long way to determine his prospects of playing in his first year. "The coaches said that they'll put me in the position that best fits me," he said. "I will have a chance to return kicks and punts. If I perform well in camp I could play right away."

The safety is already academically qualified, and plans to attend the school's bridge program in June. "I'm looking forward to it," exclaimed Fobbs-Valentino. "My dream is going to college. If high school ended today that would be cool, because that means I'm going to college right away." And once here he ahs chance to not only realize his goals but also add quality depth to ASU's safety position.

Recruit Profile


Angelo Fobbs-Valentino

High School

Junipero Serra (San Mateo, Calif.)







Date of Birth



Redwood City, Calif.


"I didn't have any"

Favorite TV Show


Favorite Movie

"Any Given Sunday"

Favorite Singer/Band

"I like all rap artists. I don't have one favorite."

Favorite Food


Favorite Drink


Favorite Athlete

"Terrell Owens"

Favorite Pro Team


Person you most admire

"My uncle Vinny. He really pushed me to play football, and made me love the game. He's always been there for me."

First Football Memory

"I was playing Pop Warner and I caught two touchdowns. One touchdown was a screen pass, and the other one I just jumped over the guy into the end zone."

One Thing most people don't know about me

"I'm just a nice guy that gets along with everybody I meet."

Why did you choose ASU?

"The environment. I got along with all the people I met, and I loved the scenery."

Where do you want to be in ten years?

"I probably want to do something in the business world, and just be successful in life."

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