Introducing the 2006 Class: Lance Evbuomwan

Redlands is considered to be off the beaten recruiting path of the fertile Southern California grounds. However, if you're a gem like Lance Evbuomwan, you will be discovered no matter how far recruiters will have to travel. For the tight end it never mattered how many schools made the effort to find him, as long as he ultimately landed in the best environment for him.

"Yeah, Redlands is a small town and it's hard to get recruited there," admitted the 6-5 260 Lance Evbuomwan. "But I'm happy with how everything ended up. I never knew I would be playing football, because I'm a basketball player that just tried to play football for fun a couple of years ago and ended up liking it."

Ironically enough, his position coach at ASU, Tom Osborne, was also the Arizona State coach recruiting him – a fact that certainly influenced Evbuomwan's decision. Schools such as UTEP, Kansas, Colorado, and Nevada were pursuing the East Valley standout early on, but the tight end was sold on the Sun Devils very quickly once they intensified their recruiting efforts. "I was happy that Arizona State was recruiting me because it was a popular school Pac-10," remarked Evbuomwan. "When I visited there I liked how close the players were to each other, even away from the football field. The facilities are great here too. I liked that ASU was closer to home than the other schools and that they're also a Pac-10 school."

The tight end mentioned that Kansas didn't stop recruiting him following his verbal commitment to the maroon and gold, and that there was another Pac-10 school that started to show attention just days before Letter of Intent Day. "USC started contacting me a week before signing day," recalled Evbuomwan. "That was just part of the recruiting process. Some schools come at you real late after you committed. But they didn't change my mind. If they came to me earlier, who knows what would happen. They only came to me after one of their tight ends de-committed."

Evbuomwan has been in Tempe for almost a month now; going through the team's conditioning workouts and seeing positive results. "Workouts are going fine," he said. "It's still a big jump from high school, but we worked out really hard in high school. I guess I was able to adapt a little easier than everyone else, but it's still really hard. I'm up to 260 now. I don't have a target weight. As long as I can still be quick, I don't care if I'm 300 pounds (laughs). I think 255 will be my playing weight."

ASU's incoming freshman is enjoying his classes and the campus in general. In his spare time, he likes to razz on fellow 2006 classmate running back Rodney Glass. "He doesn't brag about being the fastest high school athlete in America," said Evbuomwan about his roommate, "but we do mess around a little with him about that (smile)."

East Valley finished 10-1-1 in 2005 and was undefeated in the regular season. In those 12 games, Evbuomwan hauled in 54 passes for 739 yards and scored 13 touchdowns. The tight end was listed as the No. 10 player in the state of California by SuperPrep, and the No. 50 tight end in the nation by Scout.com. Among his many state honors was being selected to the Los Angeles Times All-Star first-team and the Cal-Hi Sports All-State team. "I'm a tall and athletic player, so if you put a linebacker on me I'll beat him down the field," he said in a previous Devils Digest interview. "I run a 4.78, and I know I need to get faster to play in college. I need to get stronger too."

Evbuomwan was also named All-Citrus Belt League and All-San Bernardino County in 2005 in basketball. When asked if he would want to pursue a dual career he replied: "I don't want to carry too much of a load on me playing two sports. If I'm bored or something I may tryout. But right now I highly doubt it."

In ASU's two-tight end offense, the depth cart at that position naturally has more bodies than other teams at that role. Thus, a successful fall camp may give Evbuomwan a shot at playing in his first year. Nevertheless, he does take a pragmatic approach on the subject. "I don't know if I'll redshirt or not," he said. "I'll be happy either way with the coach's decision."

Recruit Profile

Name

Lance Evbuomwan

High School

East Valley High School (Calif.)

Position

TE

Height

6-5

Weight

260

Date of birth

10/24/88

Birthplace

San Bernardino, Calif.

Nickname

"El Boggie"

Favorite TV show

"Sponge Bob"

Favorite movie

"Soul Plane"

Favorite singer/band

"Lil' Wayne"

Favorite food

"Chicken"

Favorite drink

"Orange Soda"

Favorite athlete

"Terrell Owens. I don't have the same attitude – just the wining part (laughs)"

Favorite pro team

"Miami Heat"

Person you most admire

"My little brother Kevin, because he looks up to me."

First football memory

"My first touchdown in my junior year, that was the first year I started playing football. It was my first game ever and it was the first touchdown pass for the quarterback who threw me the ball."

One thing most people don't know about me

"I'm not a total jock. I like to lay back and have fun sometimes too."

Why did you choose ASU?

"The coaches and players."

Where do you want to be in ten years?

"In the league (smile). If that doesn't work out, I'd like to own a business."

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