The last name "Pflugrad" is one that has been around the Arizona State football program for a number of years now.
Robin Pflugrad became the wide receivers coach in 1995 and was a part of the Rose Bowl run in 1996. He eventually went on to Washington State and then the University of Oregon and finally Montana.
His son Aaron went to play for the Ducks in 2009 before transferring to Arizona State. In two years with the Sun Devils in 2010 and 2011, Pflugrad caught 73 balls for 994 yards and seven touchdowns. He spent a short time with the Philadelphia Eagles before he was cut from the roster and has spent the last two seasons under head coach Todd Graham and his staff as a graduate assistant.
Who better to speak with about this year's wide receivers for Arizona State than a former Sun Devil wide receiver who has a hand in helping these players every day?
With so many wide receivers seemingly with a chance to help the Sun Devils' cause, as well as the unexpected fall of junior college transfer Eric Lauderdale to third string on the depth chart, we caught up with Aaron Pflugrad to get his thoughts.
House of Sparky: Who impressed you at wide receiver in camp?
Aaron Pflugrad: Wideout wise we're pretty deep there. We've had quite a few guys who have shown up on different days and developed a lot of quality depth. Obviously Jaelen Strong had a really good camp and Cameron Smith has been making a lot of plays as of late so we're excited about those guys. Then some of the younger guys, Ronald Lewis, Ellis Jefferson, you will see them coming up this season as well.
HoS: As a former ASU wide receiver yourself, who do you see a lot of yourself in on this team?
AP: Yeah I don't know about that one (laughing). These guys are much more talented than me. I'm just trying to instill a lot of the stuff I was taught growing up into them and teaching them how to run their routes and just attacking every day and trying to get better.
HoS: Are you able to connect with these players on a different level, given you were in this program once?
AP: Yeah, I would say that's kind of the role as a graduate assistant. You're a little younger so you can relate to them. Having gone here I always tell them, 'I ain't going to sell you a ticket to a movie I ain't seen before.' All the classes they go to, all the practices, I've been through myself so I'm just trying to show them the way there. And I show them that I've experienced that so I try to help them out.
HoS: There were some high expectations for Eric Lauderdale coming into camp, and now he's three deep on the depth chart, what happened there?
AP: Sometimes it's a hard transition coming in from junior college, but he's working hard and he's working hard to still contribute this year. He's been making strides as of late. He made some plays up at Camp Tontozona so we'll see if he can continue to make that transition.
HoS: Would you say it's just the speed of the game he's had trouble with?
AP:You know the speed and he's an athletic kid and he'll show up and he'll show up in flashes but it's just all the adjustments and the playbook and again continuing to get better at those things every day.