D.J. Foster's commitment to ASU this past February was a major sign that Todd Graham has made significant progress in reversing Arizona State's fortunes with in-state recruits. It was hoped that momentum would continue with the 2013 class with coveted four-star quarterback Tyler Bruggman from Phoenix' Brophy High School, but the Sun Devils fell victim to a pirate attack from the Palouse. The news was first reported by ASUDevils.com and Richard Obert of The Arizona Republic.
With 13 total offers from which to choose, Bruggman has elected to head north to play for new head coach Mike Leach and the Washington State Cougars. The competition for Bruggman came down to ASU and WSU, and among the eleven other offers on the table were the mighty Arkansas Razorbacks. They were one of the leaders earlier, but the Bobby Petrino scandal broke as Bruggman was visiting the Razorbacks and they then soon secured another quarterback commit.
As a junior this past season, Bruggman was sensational, completing 60.2% of his pass for 2,497 yards, 37 touchdowns and just two interceptions. He has set a number of school records at Brophy, and earned several honors and spots on All-Arizona teams and the Phoenix Player of the Year from The Arizona Republic.
Bruggman has good, not great size for the position at 6'2", 200 pounds. While he can be effective on the move, he is best as a pocket passer with good arm strength and accuracy. Perhaps his greatest strengths lie in his intangibles. He is highly praised for his leadership qualities and his poise, and with his level of maturation and development, he could be a viable option for the Cougars sooner rather than later.
With senior Jeff Tuel the likely starter in 2012, Bruggman will be in the mix with a few young quarterbacks in the future, such as redshirt sophomore Connor Halliday, who shredded ASU for 494 yards and four touchdowns last season. With Leach's pass-obsessed system, the addition of a passer of Bruggman's caliber could shake up the Pac-12 North in the coming years.
With National Signing Day still wight months away, this is not set in stone, but quarterbacks tend to give their commitments well in advance of other positions, as schools don't often take more than one quarterback per class.
The Sun Devils will likely turn the bulk of their quarterback recruiting attention to Josh Dobbs, from Alpharetta High School in Georgia. An athletic two-sport star, he has a good arm but lacks the polish and poise of Bruggman.
Here is WSU's newest gunslinger in action below: