Offensive line recruit ready for some competition

There were occasions during the 2001 football season when Coach John Mackovic's plan to get the tight end involved in the passing attack was thwarted because of the need to keep players like James Hugo and Justin Levasseur in tight for pass blocking purposes. One Wildcat recruit may help alieviate that problem.

John Parada may just be the guy to free up those tight ends in future years for more pass receptions as the Alta Loma, California product is considered a premier pass blocker.  His pass blocking skills may have been enhanced by the fact that he also performed as a starter at defensive end, which honed his ability to change directions quickly.  His high school coaches rave about his quick feet almost as much as they rave about his work ethic.

Cat Tracks hooked up with the huge offensive tackle during halftime of the Arizona-ASU basketball game Wednesday night, and during the interview we managed to get some feedback as to how at least one committed recruit perceived the Arizona football special that began airing on ESPN Sunday evening.

Cat Tracks: John, when did you start playing football? 

John Parada: " I was always interested in football, but I was always too heavy to play Pop Warner or in those kind of leagues because I just weighed too much. So I didn't start playing until later."

CT: How much do you weigh now?

J.P.: "I'm about 300 now, I'd like to come in at a solid 310 for next year."

CT: Do you think you will redshirt next year or do you anticipate playing?

J.P.: " If they need me to play I want to play.  If they want me to redshirt, I'll do that but I'm anticipating that I might  play.  Whatever they need me to do.

CT: John, are you playing any other sports?

J.P.: "I'm just concentrating on football and getting in shape for next year by working on getting stronger and faster. I have wrestled and I have done varsity track throwing the shot and discus. When I was a freshman I played basketball and I was on the varsity basketball team as a sophomore.

CT: John, do you like pass blocking or run blocking better? Which do you think you do best?

J.P.: " With my high school and  the offense we ran, we had a pro-style offense similar to Arizona's so I would say I'm pretty much the same in either one. I really like the Arizona offense.

CT: Did you see the Arizona football special on ESPN?

J.P.: " I saw the first part of it. I've got it taped and I have to watch the second half of it."

CT: What did you think of it?

J.P.: " I think that Coach Mack doesn't like to raise his temper, he just quietly or casually tells you what to do and I like that. I like Coach Mackovic a lot and I like coach Dickey (offensive line coach) a lot."

CT:  Do you plan to go to Tucson as soon as school is out to spend the summer working out?

J.P.: " I'm going to Tucson whenever they want me to. I'm looking forward to it and I'm really excited about this recruiting class. We'll have a lot of good offensive linemen coming up so that will be a lot of competition and we have a lot of good receivers coming in.

CT: Do you hope to play at the top level someday?

J.P.: " My long term goal would be to play on Sundays."


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