January 16, 2008

Germany nears decision

Eugene Germany is no stranger to the recruiting process. He originally signed with USC in 2004 out of Pomona, Calif, as the No. 86 ranked overall recruit in the national class, but never enrolled at the school due to an NCAA Clearinghouse certification delay.

A year later Germany signed with Michigan, where he redshirted in 2005 and played in eight games in 2006 before transferring to Mt. San Antonio Community College in Walnut, Calif.

Germany will sign a Letter of Intent for the third time, as a member of the 2008 class.

After academic issues delayed his first Division I stint, and off-field troubles, including a Feb. 2007 citation for marijuana possession ended his second chance prematurely, he is happy just to have another opportunity.

"I grew up," Germany said when asked about the experience of the last couple years . "That's really what it is. I just grew up. I matured. The past is the past and I'm looking forward to just stepping forward now."

In his one season at Mt. San Antonio, Germany did just that. He helped lead the Mounties to its first berth in the California Community College championship game since 1970 and earned Region IV all-state first-team honors after racking up 9.5 sacks and 18 tackles for loss.

"We lost in the championship game by three but it was a good experience," Germany said. "We had a good season."

Two schools are now in contender for Germany's Letter of Intent signature, with Arizona State strongly leading over Marshall. Germany, 6-foot-3 and 275 pounds, has visits set with the Sun Devils this weekend, and Marshall the following weekend.

Jamie Christian is recruiting Germany for the Sun Devils.

"I've always known about ASU but I've never been out there though," Germany said. "I want to check it out. I watched what they did last season. I know about Coach Erickson, his history, I know his background. I've heard nothing but good things about him. If I like it there I could definitely go there."

However, Germany said he is unsure if he would be willing to commit to ASU while on the recruiting trip.

"We'll see how it goes," he said. "I just want to see how I feel about it when I'm there. I want to learn more about the coaching staff and whether it will be a good fit for me -- basically if I'll fit in with the players and coaches and if they're a good group of guys."

Germany, who was the No. 2 strongside end in the nation by Rivals.com coming out of Pomona High School, said that ASU and Marshall are recruiting him as an end. He is considered to be a "swing" recruit, because of his ability to play either end or tackle.

Realizing this will be the final time Germany goes through the recruiting process regardless of the outcome has left him somewhat relieved.

"I feel like everything is going real well," he said. "My classes are going well. I did pretty good in school in the fall. I feel real blessed. I just want to keep moving forward. Life is going good. You always got to love life no matter what but it's going real good though."

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