TEMPE, Ariz. — Arizona State officially added junior-college transfers Nick Kelly and Josh Tremblay from American River College (Sacramento, Calif.) on Wednesday, boosting its offensive line depth.
With the players’ Letters of Intent signed, ASU coach Todd Graham talked about his new recruits after Wednesday’s bowl practice.
“We’re excited about those guys,” Graham said. “Obviously, (with) our need at center, it gives us some flexibility.”
Kelly, a two-star recruit as ranked by Scout.com, gives ASU another option at center. The Sun Devils will return starter Kody Koebensky for his senior season in 2013, and redshirt freshman Mo Latu has also been discussed for the position. The 6-foot-3, 280-pound Kelly gives ASU the ability to move Latu elsewhere on the line.
“It gives us some flexibility with Mo, a guy I think needs to play,” Graham said. “We’ll probably slide Mo over to guard. … There’s a lot of moving components at that center position.”
Because Kelly is a junior-college freshman he’ll be able to play three seasons at ASU. Kelly also had reported offers from Nevada, Wyoming and New Mexico.
“Nick’s a guy that if we had waited I think would be difficult to obtain,” Graham said. “He’d be a guy I think a lot of people recruited. He’s that true center, shotgun center that we need that can make all the calls very sharp and come in and compete.”
Tremblay, meanwhile, may have been an even bigger get for the Sun Devils. A 6-foot-4, 280-pound guard rated as a three-star recruit, Tremblay had reported offers from Fresno State and New Mexico. With Jamil Douglas still a redshirt sophomore, Latu moving over, redshirt freshman guard Vi Teofilo already getting experience this year and former five-star guard Christian Westerman transferring from Auburn, ASU should be particularly deep at the guard positions the next couple seasons, creating some flexibility to move players to tackle.
“Josh is a guy I love — he’s obviously got some height that we like and (is) tough,” Graham said. “He reminds me of (junior left tackle Evan) Finkenberg a lot. And I think Finkenberg is very good because he can play guard or tackle.”
Graham said Tremblay will play tackle or guard, likely starting out as a tackle. Both Kelly and Tremblay are expected to enroll at ASU in January and join the team for spring practice.