Bass, HS Teammates Visit Sun Devils

Running back Ryan Bass, linebacker Brandon Magee (pictured) and two other Norco (Calif.) Centennial teammates were in Tempe for less than 24 hours this weekend. Nonetheless, it was time well spent as all four players came away impressed with ASU during their visit. Devils Digest caught up with the quartet to get their thoughts about their unofficial trip.

One big reason, perhaps the biggest, that Centennial is off to a 3-0 start is 5-10 186 running back Ryan Bass. On Friday he rushed for 206 yards and three TD's in a 41-20 victory over Crespi. In three games this season, the senior has registered 566 yards and ten touchdowns. He even has a couple of two-point conversions to boot.

Bass has listed Arizona State as his favorite for a few months now, and his experience in Sun Devil country certainly did nothing to change that notion. "It went real well," he said of his visit. "I liked the coaches, the environment, the fans…it was a good trip. We got there at 1 o‘clock, they showed us around campus, we went to the game and drove home after the game."

The fact that Bass saw ASU running back Keegan Herring rush for 161 yards and a pair of scores in ASU's 34-13 win against San Diego State (where his brother Ray Bass is a linebacker) only strengthen his feelings towards the maroon and gold and the offensive scheme they run. "Arizona State is a good football team and I like the offense," he commented. "They run the football a lot and seeing that got me excited." Bass added that he still doesn't know when he will visit the Sun Devils officially but it's likely to take place later this year.

Centennial linebacker Brandon Magee was also impressed with the play of ASU and naturally focused on the defensive side – in particular on Sun Devils' leading tackler Robert James. "The weak side linebacker #29 – he plays the same way I play. I know if I went there, I would play just like he does."

"I had a good time, but I have to come back for an official visit. I think I'll be coming next month. I like (ASU safeties) Coach Lubick. He's a real coach, down to earth. I loved the whole atmosphere, the facilities, the coaches…just talking to the coaches you feel like you should be there."

Magee, who's an accomplished baseball player, added that the chance to play both sports at ASU on a high level is something that does intrigue him when it comes to ASU's recruitment.

The 5-11 226 Magee stated that while he didn't have his stats for the season, he noted that after two games he had 18 tackles, three sacks, two caused fumbles and a fumble recovery. "I can blitz from the edge pretty fast and I'm a real good tackler," he said of his skills. "I need to work on being more patient and not over run on plays."

The Centennial standout claimed that he has no favorites right now and is "looking at everybody…I'll play close to home or away from home." Two of his offers are from Louisville and Nebraska, and the linebacker indicated that he plans to officially trip to those programs, as well as ASU and Arizona. He didn't rule out taking unofficial visits to schools closer to him this season as well.

Magee, who together with Bass received a scholarship offer from ASU in the spring, remarked that he does consider himself and Bass a package deal. "It's a big possibility that we'll end up in the same school," he stated. "We talked about that yesterday with the other players from our school that were there."

Those aforementioned players are fellow linebackers Shelly Lyons Jerry Hardeman.

The 5-11 205 Hardeman, who has been recruited by ASU for about a month now, reiterated what his teammates said about the ASU trip and pointed to the environment and game atmosphere as some of the aspects he most enjoyed about his visit. "It was my first time to Arizona State," he said. "The team was very well-prepared and ready to play their game. You can tell that they're well-coached. The coaches and students there are very nice and out going. I also like how you can get a good education there and how much they'll help you with your studies."

Hardeman plays the strong side linebacker across from Magee, but indicated that ASU is recruiting him as strong safety – a position is more than receptive to. Hardeman currently has no offers, and places ASU in his top four with Arizona, Utah and Washington. He listed his quickness as his biggest asset, and pass rush as the area he needs to improve on.

The 6-1 225 Lyons enjoyed the "fun" trip and said: "The stadium was real nice, the people were nice…it was a good trip." The inside linebacker (Centennial plays a 3-4 scheme) has offers from Idaho, San Diego State, UNLV and Utah. "I've been talking to the coaches from Arizona State, getting letters," Lyons remarked. "It's kinda crazy how they're recruiting three senior linebackers from the same school…I like how Arizona State is in the Pac-10 because that's the conference I want to play in."

Another player for Sun Devil fans to keep in mind is the fourth linebacker on Centennial 6-2 235 junior Vontaze Burfict who's a 2009 recruiting class prospect.

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