Changes lead Haman back home

A head coaching change at Arkansas had Brock Haman start thinking of his college football future. When the linebacker realized the new culture that now existed with the Arizona State program, this former Scottsdale Saguaro standout decided to transfer from the Razorbacks and join his hometown school.

"It wasn't all bad over there," Haman admitted. "We had a good season and it was a good experience for me. I was part of a team that made it to the Cotton Bowl. I obviously committed to play for Coach Petrino and when he left that had to do a little with me leaving.

"I had no idea that they would bring in John L.Smith as the new head coach. I thought they would bring in some random coach for one year. I think he (Smith) is a great coach for them."

Haman said that there were other factors that led to his transfer decision but he declined to elaborate on them.

The 6-3 230-pound Brock Haman redshirted his first year with the Razorbacks due to a Lisfranc foot fracture suffered in the first week of fall camp. However, the linebacker said that he is fully recovered now.

"I was able to practice the last week before the Cotton Bowl," Haman said, "and I also practiced in the spring. So I'm 100 percent."

Haman was pursued by the Sun Devils out of high school, yet he didn't give ASU as much consideration as some of his suitors because he felt the program was different than it is now.

"With the new coaching change it seems like they are really turning things around here," Haman described. "The mindset of everyone seems a lot different. My dad said that the program is headed in a new direction and this is the place to be right now. The ASU coaches told me that they want me to be part of this team because they believe I can make an impact.

"Obviously playing close to my family and having so many friends on the team like Jordan McDonald, Danny Clark and D.J. Foster made it an easy call. It's nice to go to a place where you know so many people. All of the (ASU) players told me that this program is going to win and it will great to go to a place where I can compete for a Rose Bowl championship. It's nice to hear that winning a Rose Bowl championship is on everybody's mind there."

Haman, who started ASU's first summer session yesterday, signed a Financial Award Statement with Arizona State which has officially made him part of the Sun Devil team. Now the question is whether the linebacker will have to sit out a season due to NCAA transfer rules, or will his hardship appeal (due to the Arkansas coaching change) to play this season be accepted.

"I just started the hardship process," Haman noted. "I obviously want to come in and play right away because I know how it was last year not to play. After I submit everything I'll know sometime in the summer what happens."

If Haman's hardship is denied he will be a three for three player in terms of eligibility.

Even though Haman is back in the valley after being only one year away from home, and following a season where he had to redshirt due to injury, he has no regrets not committing to ASU previously, nor does he have any qualms on how his college career has unfolded so far.

"Arkansas is a great school, they play in the SEC and it was a great opportunity for me," Haman recalled. "I believe everything happens for a reason. It was a good experience going to a winning team and see how they go about everything so they can have a successful season.

"But I'm also glad that I got to come back home and I'm glad to be a Sun Devil."

Scout.com ranked Haman as the nation's No. 61 tight end in the 2011 class. His senior season with the Sabercats was riddled with injuries, but he was able to collect 19 tackles and three sacks during that year. Haman said during his discussions with ASU's defensive coordinator, Paul Randolph, it's been determined that he will line up as the ‘Devil' backer which is a hybrid linebacker/defensive end in ASU's scheme.

"The ASU coaches said that I'm exactly what they're looking for at that position," Haman said. "They wanted someone big and fast, that is also athletic and can play multiple positions."

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