Huntington Beach (Calif.) Edison offensive lineman Martin Coleman gave an early commitment to USC back in the Spring. Still the lure of taking official visits was strong for Coleman so this past weekend, the talented tackle prospect took a trip to Arizona State.
Coleman, 6-5, 290 pounds is a top 100 player nationally and arguably the top OL prospect in the state. Coleman didn't play football until his junior season and although still new to the game, the lineman's upside is off the charts.
"I've been battling a back and anke injuries this year but I'm feeling really good right now," Coleman said. "I played right tackle all last season but Coach White moved me to left tackle this season to protect our quarterback's blind side. It's been a little tough at times, I don't think people realize how different the two positions are and I'm definitely more ahead on run blocking than my pass blocking. Things are good though and I'm just going to keep working hard and try and get better at everything."
Coleman and his Charger teammates lost a heartbreaker last Friday to state power Santa Ana (Calif.) Mater Dei and the lineman took off the next day for Tempe.
"I was very impressed with ASU," Coleman said. "I got in around 9:00 in the morning on Saturday, ate a huge breakfast and then headed over to the stadium. There were about nine recruits in all and before the game, we went in to the locker room and met some of the redshirt freshman and injured players. That was really cool and then we went out to the field.
"The game atmosphere was crazy and the crowd was really in to it. They were chanting the whole time and making a lot noise. Even though the game didn't go that well for them, I still had a good experience and enjoyed watching the team. When I watch a game now, I mostly watch as a fan but I also like to watch my position and see how I would fit in there.
"After the game, we went back in to the locker room and met the players and I met my host, Thomas Altieri. We went out that night, all of the players and it was off the hook. Tempe is a great place and it was just cool hanging out with all the guys. I was so comfortable with everyone and there were even some Tongans there and we were talking to each other in Tongan. Everyone was looking at us like, 'what are they doing,' but it was a lot of fun.
"Sunday, I met with Coach Koetter, toured the campus and saw all the football facilities. The weight room is incredible and the campus was really nice too. Coach Koetter and all the other coaches were nice as well and he was just telling me how well I would fit in there. Overall, it was a great trip and I'm really glad I took it."
The obvious question for Coleman now is, 'how solid is your commitment to USC?
"I'm 100% committed to USC," Coleman said. "I'm a Trojan all the way. "I had a good time at ASU and it was a fun trip but I'm still going to USC, there is no doubt about that all. It was funny, after the trip, I got a call from Coach Carroll, Coach Ruhl and Coach Kiffin and they were just joking around asking me if I was going to ASU now but like I said, I'm 100% committed and probably won't be taking any more visits.
"I was looking at possibly visiting Miami and Nebraska and that would still be fun to do but I just don't think I'll have time for it. I'm going to be graduating early and enrolling early at SC in time for Spring ball so that doesn't leave me with a lot of time for visits. I can't wait to get there and start working out with the team, I'm already excited about that. I'll be at the Coliseum this weekend for the game with Washington and I plan to be at every home game the rest of the season."