Rob Evans Quotes On Staying At ASU

March 29, 2002

'The New Mexico job is a great situation. The package they presented to me is a great one for any level. Their fan support is amazing and the energy they put towards basketball is equal to any university in the nation. The state also produces strong local talent, such as Kenny Thomas and A.J. Bramlett to name a couple recently and one that I think Sun Devil fans will enjoy watching next year, Serge Angounou.

'I felt it was in the best interests of my family and staff to consider the New Mexico position. I am also someone who will never forget where I learned the game and where I learned many lessons about life. When UNM expressed an interest in me, I felt that needed to educate myself about the current state of the Lobo program and see whether going home was the correct thing to do at this time.

'After thinking it over with my wife and several others, I know Arizona State remains my focus. We have achieved several of our goals already and several more will occur soon. Next year, we expect to graduate all six seniors on our roster. That was one of the main concerns of the university when I accepted the job. We have made an impact off the court in several areas, and that will continue.

'When we took over the program we had five players from the previous season to work with and one year later we were down to a single player from that team. Recruiting at that time was tougher because of some of the negative things from the past. Now we are in a position to attract top-25 players because of the enhanced facilities, the positive role models we have on our team and the emphasis we have showed towards academics. Our recruiting classes have improved and they will continue to get better. I know our fans last year were excited about Jason Braxton and Curtis Millage. The players on the way now can take us to great heights. Our program is competing against some of the top schools in the nation in recruiting.

'Less than four years ago I took this job knowing it was going to be a rebuilding job and also knowing patience was going to be a factor. I want all Sun Devil fans to know nothing has changed with regards to our attitude. We want to win championships and build this program so it becomes a contender nationally. I understand we have challenges ahead of us, but four years ago Arizona State hired a staff that loves challenges.

'I appreciate the opportunity New Mexico gave to me and I thank Arizona State for understanding it was a situation which might be suited towards me. The bottom line is that my current team, the kids we recruited and the Arizona State people and fans are very important to me. We want to put Arizona State back on the college basketball map.'

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