Demps goes from the hardwood to the gridiron


File Photo - The State Hornet

Former Sacramento State guard Cody Demps was one of 15 players to be invited to the NBA G League Reno Bighorns’ training camp. Demps will compete for an opportunity to make the final 10-man roster.

Andrew Brown

Cody Demps has gone from senior captain and point guard on the Sacramento State basketball team to the rookie wide receiver on the football team in a matter of weeks, after a surprise announcement last week.

Demps, author of one the most successful tenures in Sac State basketball history, was a standout and heavily recruited quarterback coming out of Pleasant Grove High School but instead chose to play basketball with the Hornets.

Demps said he brought up the idea to Sac State football head coach Jody Sears a couple of weeks after the basketball season ended.

“I have two classes left I need to finish to get my degree in mechanical engineering,” Demps said. “That played a huge role in my decision. I needed to get that done before I go and do anything else. Football allowed me to do that. They offered me a scholarship, and I could come out and finish my degree.”

Sears said although he had never talked to Demps about playing for the football team once Demps signed on to play basketball, he always knew there was a possibility Demps would play football because of his intangibles.

“He’s an unbelievable person,” Sears said. “Character, integrity, work ethic, he’s getting his mechanical engineering degree. Who wouldn’t want a guy like that in your locker room? Oh, and he’s really good wide receiver too.”

Sac State men’s basketball coach Brian Katz, who coached Demps all four years he played on the basketball team, said he wasn’t surprised by the decision and said Demps reached out to him to let him know the news before announcing it to anyone else.

“[Demps] called me and told me, ‘I haven’t been on a team in a couple weeks, and it’s driving me crazy. I’m going to go play football,'” Katz said.

Katz said even after nearly five years of knowing Demps and watching him play basketball, he still thinks of Demps as a football player after recruiting him in high school.

Both Sears and Katz agreed that Demps has a high ceiling in regards to what production the football team will see out of him. Demps has been practicing with the football team for the last month and has been getting advice from a variety of sources.

“I have a lot of people around me giving me advice,” Demps said. “My brother plays wide receiver at the [University of Nevada at Reno], and so I’ve gone to him for advice and trying to get the little techniques down. I also have a couple of people from back in high school who have offered to help me during the summer, and obviously, the coaches have helped me as well.”

Sears said he can’t say for sure where Demps will fit in on the wide receiver depth chart at this point, but he would definitely be in the six-man rotation the team dresses on game days. Sears also said Demps has looked really good in the short time he has been on the field this spring.

Demps said his future after graduating will stay the same regardless of the move over to football.

“Basketball. That is my dream,” Demps said. “That’s my plan right now. To finish my degree and graduate in the fall. After football is over, I’m going to get right back in the gym and start working on [basketball] to try and not only get back to where I was but better so I can go and play overseas.”