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For week ended January 30, 2000 Posted 24 Feb 2001
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Summarized by Kent Larsen

LDS Football All-American Joins ASU Basketball Team
Sporting News 24Jan00 S2

TEMPE, ARIZONA -- ASU All-American tight end and LDS Church member Todd Heap joined the Sun Devils' basketball squad on Monday. The 6-5, 225-pound sophomore says he wanted to play basketball since he arrived on campus as a freshman, and finally decided to do it. "I've always loved basketball and it's been kind of a family deal," said Heap after his first practice. "My grandpa played here and his brother played here. I've been coming to the games as long as I can remember."

While ASU's football coach Bruce Snyder had discouraged Heap from playing last year, he told him on Monday he no longer had any objection, "He actually came to me and said 'Why don't you do it?' " Heap said. "It was definitely a surprise. I was real nervous. I didn't know what to expect." Heap had been a star player in both sports at Mountain View High School in Mesa.

Football coach Snyder issued a statement on Monday saying he supported Heap's decision, "I decided that he's established here in our program," Snyder said. "We looked at his grades and they're fine. I'm a strong supporter of coach (Rob) Evans and if this works out, it would be fun to take the football players to the arena to cheer their team."

And basketball coach Rob Evans seems pleased to have him, "A couple of weeks ago, when we were getting through with practice, he shot some baskets and I could tell he was missing basketball," Evans said. "But that was something that was going to have to be agreeable with Bruce." But it may be some time before Heap actually gets in a game, "That's down the line because first of all, he's not in any kind of basketball shape," Evans said. "Football shape is different than basketball shape. The muscles are different. The conditioning is different. I think the thing we need to do for him right now is try to get him in condition and let him help us in practice, let him learn the offenses and defenses we're trying to do, and then go from there."


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