Szakacsy Commits to Sun Devils

Ever since the word of Samson Szakacsy's surprise official visit to ASU a couple of weekends ago, the Sun Devil nation has been buzzing over the possibility of this one time USC commit donning the maroon and gold. Earlier today the Camarillo (Calif.) QB informed the ASU coaches that he will sign with Sun Devils on Wednesday. Devils Digest talked to him following his announcement.

"I just decided what the best place for me was," said the 6-5 195 Samson Szakacsy. "It obviously wasn't anything to do about being afraid to compete at USC. It was just that going to Arizona State was a better situation for me. I've been talking to so many people affiliated and non-affiliated with USC and their ultimate response was for me to go where I have the best opportunity, and that's what I did."

The signal caller said that ever since he decided to de-commit from USC, that he didn't explore any opportunities other than ASU. His relationship with Sun Devils QB Coach and Offensive Coordinator Rich Olson, was a major factor in his verbal to the maroon and gold. "He recruited me when he was at University of Miami," Szakacsy noted, "and once he came to Arizona State he kept in touch with me. He asked a few weeks ago how I was doing, and that's how the contact started."

Szakacsy committed to the Trojans in May of last year, after having a record setting junior season. He was 184 for 254 for 2,038 yards and 24 touchdowns. His 72.4 % completion percentage broke an 18-year old county record. He was planning to graduate early and enroll at USC last month. However a leg injury that sidelined him most of his senior year derailed those plans. "I fractured my fibula in my left leg," he explained. "It was a freak thing. A player hit me, and I tried to kind of spin away from him and my cleats got stuck. I ended up playing the rest of the game on that leg and that didn't make things better. I missed six games, but was able to come back and make a playoff run. But I'm ready to go now."

The quarterback does truly believe that his injury did have a silver lining to it, and actually made him a better player in the long run. "It was tough because as a competitor you always want to be out there, especially your senior year," Szakacsy commented. "It was heartbreaking that all that was taken away from me. But you learn real quick that you can't sulk. I went up in to the booth with the offensive coordinator and helped call plays. Just seeing the game from a different perspective, you learn so much more. My situation gave the backup quarterback a chance to play and I know he was looking to play in college. Everything happens for a reason. You just have to find positives in a tough situation."

When asked to self-assess his skills, his reply centered once again over the outcomes that his injury has brought on. "My strongest point is understanding the mental aspect of the game and my ability to read defenses. I'm a competitor and competition makes any player better. I always find a way to win. I obviously need to work on all my skills so I can adjust to the speed of the game in college. You can always get better no matter how good you are. The harder you work the better you'll be."

As tall as Szakacsy is, he does have surprising speed and is very athletic. These attributes are necessities in a Dennis Erickson offense, and the Camarillo standout is obviously aware of that. "He (Erickson) runs a balanced west coast type of offense and I feel that I've been playing in that type of offense all my life. I'm very excited about it."

Szakacsy visited ASU on Jan. 26th and basically couldn't find anything not to be impressed with. "It was great," he said. "The whole staff is s personable and knowledgeable about the game," he said. "Coach Olson is great, and I can already tell we're developing a great relationship. It was a great atmosphere, and it felt just like being at home."

Szakacsy is academically qualified and is ASU's 20th known commitment of the 2007 class.

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