Injury Not Slowing Langstaff‘s Recruitment

Lack of junior season game film is usually a recipe for slow recruiting interest. When it comes to defensive tackle Alanzi Langstaff that hasn't necessarily been the case. The Las Vegas HS player tore his ACL in the first game of 2007. He doesn't have a scholarship offer, but has plenty of interest from numerous schools, including ASU where he camped earlier in the week.

The 6-4 293 Alanzi Langstaff suffered his injury in the first quarter of the season opener. "I was gonna make a tackle and my knee hit another player in the back," he recalled. "I came back in the third quarter for a couple of plays. I was playing OK until I tried to plant my foot and then I injured my knee a little more."

The defensive tackle was obviously disappointed, but felt blessed that he had an outstanding trainer who helped him immensely with his rehab. There may never be a good time for a season-ending injury, yet Langstaff feels that the timing of this adversity could have been much worse.

"I'm pretty fortunate it happened the first week of the season," he explained, "because that way I could rehab, get ready for spring practice and be healthy for my senior year."

Last Sunday in Tempe Langstaff was sporting a knee brace and looked somewhat limited moving around. Despite all that he felt optimistic over his showing based on the feedback he received. "I think I did OK with my performance," he said. "Coach Grady Stretz told me I did well. This was the only camp I went to and the only football stuff I did since spring practice. My coach wanted me to take it easy in the spring but I went full speed by the time it was over."

Arizona, Oregon State, Washington, Washington State, Minnesota, UNLV, Boise State and Utah are among the schools that are also recruiting the defensive tackle. Since he took the SAT and ACT tests earlier in the month, Langstaff wasn't able to go to any other camps or combines. Furthermore, he will be starting team practices at the end of the month.

"I obviously don't have a lot of game film to show schools, but it makes you feel good that Arizona State and other schools are still recruiting me," said Langstaff. "They (ASU) didn't recruit me my sophomore year and Coach Cozzetto came and saw me before spring practice started. He told me then that he wanted me to come to camp and see how I'm moving after my injury."

Langstaff added that it was easy to build a good relationship with Coach Cozzetto (who also coached at Oregon State), since he recruited another Las Vegas product, former Oregon State and current St. Louis Rams running back Steven Jackson. Jackson's mom is friends with Langstaff's mom who naturally helped endorse the efforts of ASU's tight ends coach.

Arizona State is a school that Langstaff has casually followed for a while, since his cousin is Craig Newsome who donned the maroon and gold in the mid-1990's. Newsome also played in the NFL with the Green Bay Packers and San Francisco 49ers. "When I was down there I saw the facilities and liked them, but I really liked the City of Tempe," said Langstaff. "We drove in at night and we saw the lake with all the lights shining on it…that caught my eye and I fell in love with it."

"I feel more comfortable going to a school that's closer to home and Arizona State is just five hours by car."

Langstaff stated that he and his Wildcats squad are extremely excited for the upcoming season. "We have state written all over us," he said. "I'm feeling like I'm 85% right now and getting back into the swing of things. I'm looking to get into shape and get down to 280-275 lbs. When I got injured I was like 330-325 and I lost a lot of weight in rehab."

He added that his sophomore year he cleaned 295lbs., benched 425lbs. and ran a 5.3 in the 40-yard dash.

The defensive tackle doesn't have a schedule of official visits yet, but emphatically stated that "for sure Arizona State is gonna be a school I visit." He mentioned Cal, Oregon and Boise State as possible official visits destinations.

Coaching stability and academics are two factors that will strongly guide his decision, which could come before his senior season culminates.

Naturally, a decision on his school of choice can only come when he starts to garner scholarship offers, and that will only be derived by a successful senior campaign. Nonetheless, coming back from injury and trying to land in a solid college program, Langstaff doesn't feel pressure going into the 2008 season.

"I know if I just go out there and play like I can, I'll be OK and get some offers."

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