January 13, 2008

Sun Devils land Bass

Corona (Calif.) Centennial running back Ryan Bass, a 2007 All-USA second-team selection by USA Today and the No. 90 overall recruit in the class by Rivals.com, has committed to Arizona State after visiting the school's campus on an official visit over the weekend.

"I knew right away," Bass said. "It's a nice city. The players were all cool, the coaches were real cool. I feel real comfortable with everything at ASU."

Bass, the No. 2 all-purpose back in the country, had an enormously successful senior season, rushing for 2,608 yards on 345 carries, with 47 touchdowns for a Centennial team that went 13-2 and reached the state's Division I title game.

On his official visit to ASU, Bass was joined by high school teammates Shelly Lyons and Brandon Magee, both of whom also committed to the program, according to Bass.

"It feels real good," Bass said. "We're all good players and they're my real good friends. It's going to be nice having those guys around me in college and being able to play together again."

The 5-foot-10, 190 pound Bass is the No. 2 all-purpose back in the nation and the No. 27 overall prospect in California. He is the second member of the ASU class in the Rivals100, along with Hamilton receiver prospect Gerell Robinson.

Last summer, Bass said that Arizona State was his top choice. It was a position he held through at least early October. Less than a month later, in a somewhat surprising move, he committed to Arizona while on a recruiting trip to the school along with teammate Matt Scott, a Wildcats quarterback pledge.

What followed was even more bizarre, even in the realm of recruiting, where anything and everything is possible.

Bass maintained for more than a month that even though he was a soft commit to Arizona, he favored the Sun Devils, and it was also the school his parents wanted him to attend. Even so, he elected to remain a soft commit to the Wildcats until his official visit to Tempe.

It became increasingly clear in recent weeks that Bass would switch his commitment, and on Saturday he did just that.

"I love coach Erickson," Bass said. "That's where I really want to play. I've felt like that for a long time now. My parents loved it out there too. Erickson was really happy with me when I did it, I could tell. I feel real good about it and now I'm happy I'm done with the recruiting."

Bass will now turn his attention to academics, where he has some work to do in order to become a full qualifier in terms of initial eligibility.

Bass has taken the SAT twice and he's scheduled to take it again on January 28th. He will also take an upcoming ACT exam. It's unclear exactly what score Bass will need to qualify, because it will depend on where his core grade point average is at when he graduates high school and how that correlates on the sliding scale used for NCAA Clearinghouse certification.

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