Now that the calendar has turned to 2015 and the bowl season is behind us, the spotlight in college football turns to recruiting. There is less than a month until national signing day, as college coaches finalize their 2015 recruiting classes.
Arizona State has been very active in the final months of recruiting, picking up verbal commitments from 4-star recruits Stanley Norman, Zach Robertson and Paul Lucas within the past two weeks.
In the coming weeks, the 2015 recruiting class will be talked about at length, but first let's look back at ASU's previous recruiting classes. Over the next four weeks, we will look back at ASU's last four recruiting classes, starting with the 2011 class.
This group played 2014 as either redshirt juniors or true seniors, in 2015 the remaining players will be redshirt seniors playing with their final year of eligibility. It should be noted that his was Dennis Erickson's final full recruiting class as head coach of Arizona State.
The Sun Devils signed just 19 players in their 2011 recruiting class, which is on the small side. The class was ranked 58th in the nation by Rivals, behind the likes of SMU, Boise State and UCF. ESPN, which only ranked the top 25 classes at that time, did not rank ASU's class.
Two commits had 4-star ratings according to Rivals and ESPN had zero recruits ranked as a 4-star products. The Sun Devils signed five players from the state of Arizona, however they did not sign any of the top seven players in the state.
Arizona's high school class of 2011 included Brett Hundley, Ka'Deem Carey and Tyler Johnstone. Christian Westerman, the top prospect in the state, signed with Auburn out of high school and later transferred to Arizona State.
The class consisted of nine defensive players, nine offensive players and one special teams player. Four players in the class came to ASU via junior college.
QB - 2
Michael Eubank - Corona, Calif. (ESPN #101 ATH***) (Rivals #8 DT-QB****, #193 nationally)
Eubank came to Arizona State from Centennial High School, where Dennis Erickson and staff built a nice pipeline (Vontaze Burfict, Brandon McGee). The athletic quarterback redshirted in 2011 and in the spring of 2012, lost the quarterback competition to Taylor Kelly.
He did see limited action as a backup in 2012, however Eubank transferred to Samford for the 2014 season without making a single start for the Sun Devils.
Mike Bercovici - Woodland Hills, Calif. (ESPN #80**) (Rivals: #14 PP-QB***)
The strong-armed quarterback from Southern California was the backup to Brock Osweiler in 2011 and along with Eubank, lost the starting quarterback race in 2012. That season, Todd Graham and staff decided to redshirt Bercovici and in 2013 and 2014 he served as the backup to Taylor Kelly.
In 2014, he saw his first extended playing time of his career when he filled in for an injured Kelly. He threw for 1,445 yards, 12 touchdowns and four interceptions in 2014. He will assume the starting role in 2015, his final season as a Sun Devil.
RB - 0
Gary Chambers - Phoenix, Ariz. (ESPN #69**) (Rivals: N/A**)
Chambers redshirted in 2011 and served on the scout team in 2012 and 2013. Graham has praised his work ethic and in 2014 he caught nine passes for 190 yards and two touchdowns. Chambers will be a redshirt senior in 2015 and should see action as a reserve next season.
Rashad Ross - Vallejo, Calif. (ESPN: N/A) (Rivals: N/A**)
Ross came to Tempe from Butler Community College and stepped in immediately for the Sun Devils. He made 14 career starts and appeared in 26 career games for the Sun Devils, catching 55 passes for 864 yards in his Sun Devil career. Ross was also a major contributor on special teams.
Karl Holmes - Pasadena, Calif. (ESPN #275) (Rivals: #N/A**)
Holmes was a late addition to the 2011 class, signing after national signing day. After redshirting in 2011 and not playing a down in 2012, Holmes transferred to Pasadena Community College in 2012 after not seeing eye-to-eye with the new coaching staff.
TE - 0
OL - 4
Vi Teofilo - Phoenix, Ariz. (ESPN: 70 OG***) (Rivals: N/A***)
After redshirting in 2011 and serving as a backup in 2012, Teofilo has started every game the past two seasons on the ASU offensive line. Teofilo has made 29 straight starts and will spend 2015 most likely back at his RG position.
Devin Goodman - Lakeland, Fla. (ESPN: #35 OG***) (Rivals: N/A***)
Goodman has been a career backup during his tenure in Tempe. He appeared in four games in 2012 and six games in 2013. His younger brother Evan, projects to be the starting left tackle next season.
Brent Walker - Norco, Calif. (ESPN: #89 OT***) (Rivals: N/A***)
Walker attended the same high school has Carl Bradford, Deantre Lewis and Garth Gerhart. He did not see action as a Sun Devil and is no longer on the roster.
Mo Latu - Gilbert, Ariz. (ESPN: #5*** OC) (Rivals: #2**** OC, #248 nationally)
Latu was the highest rated player in the class according to ESPN and the second highest according to Rivals. He is the only member of this class to be rated a top-5 player at his position by both recruiting services. Latu was moved to defense when Graham took over and he appeared in 12 games in 2012 and 11 games in 2013.
Latu earned significant playing time in 2014, especially towards the end of the season and he should be featured in the defensive line rotation in 2015.
DE - 2
Davon Coleman - Cleveland, Ohio (ESPN: N/A**) (Rivals: N/A**)
Coleman came to Arizona State from Fort Scott Community College in Kansas and he played three seasons at ASU. He appeared in 13 games in 2011, he posted 11 tackles for loss in 2012 and earned a starting role in 2013. He signed as an undrafted free agent in 2014 with the Dallas Cowboys.
Sean O'Grady - Las Flores, Calif. (ESPN #96**) (Rivals: N/A**)
O'Grady had a hard time getting his career started at ASU. He redshirted in 2011 and did not see any action in 2012. In 2013, he played in four games and he was not part of the team in 2014.
DT - 1
David Moala - Gardena, Calif. (ESPN N/A**) (Rivals: N/A**)
Moala redshirted in 2011 and was dismissed from the team by Graham for a violation of team rules.
OLB - 1
Isreal Marshall - Phoenix, Ariz. (ESPN: #114***) (Rivals: N/A***)
Marshall redshirted in 2011 and sat out 2012 with a back injury. He did not return to the team after 2012.
ILB - 1
Kipeli Koniseti - Sacramento, Calif. (ESPN: N/A) (Rivals: N/A**)
Koniseti originally signed with ASU as part of their 2009 class, however he did not qualify. He went to the College of Sequoias and enrolled at ASU in 2011. He was mostly used on special teams in 2011, appearing in nine games. He appeared in all 13 games in 2013, mostly as a special team contributor.
CB - 2
Joe Eason - Pahokee, Fla. (ESPN #128) (Rivals: N/A**)
Eason redshirted in 2011 and transferred to Scottsdale Community College after the 2012 season. He ended up playing at Missouri State.
Rashad Wadood - Lakewood, Calif. (ESPN: #82 ATH***) (Rivals: N/A***)
Wadood played a good amount in 2011 and redshirted in 2012. After only seeing time in just one game in 2013, he transferred to Eastern Washington.
S - 2
Kevin Ayers - West Los Angeles, Calif. (ESPN: N/A) (Rivals: N/A**)
Ayers was very productive in his two seasons at Arizona State, playing in 25 total games in 2011 and 2012. He totaled 29 tackles and forced one fumble.
Ezekiel Bishop - Denver, Colo. (ESPN: #98*** ATH) (Rivals: #55 ATH***)
Bishop is still at Arizona State, but many fans will not know his name. He redshirt in 2012 and only played in two games in 2013. Biship has been passed up by younger players at safety and figures to be a role player in 2015.
Specialist - 1
Josh Hubner - Scottsdale, Ariz. (ESPN: N/A) (Rivals: N/A**)
Hubner stepped on campus and earned the starting punting job in 2011. He averaged 41.3 yards per punt in 2011 and in 2012 he set a school record when he averaged 47.1 yards per punt. He was one of ASU's best weapons in 2012 and was named to a few All-American teams.
Compared to the recruiting classes of Graham and his staff, this class is very weak. It was weak on paper in 2011 and looking back in 2015 it is still weak. Of the 19 players signed, only nine earned significant playing time in their ASU careers.
ASU's two highest rated signees, Michael Eubank and Mo Latu, have both disappointed and Eubank is not even with the program anymore. Of the 19 players to sign in this class, 13 of them are no longer with the program, that also takes into account the junior college players whose eligibility would have run out by now.
One factor for the number of transfers is the new coaching staff that was put into place in 2012. Graham brought in a sense of discipline and that was something a lot of Erickson's recruits did not know about.
The reason why ASU had to play so many freshman and sophomores this past season is because the depth of this class is very poor.
Biggest Surprise: Davon Coleman
Coleman came from the junior college ranks and immediately made an impact along the defensive line. Coleman was a significant contributor for three years.
Biggest Disappointment: Michael Eubank
Eubank was supposed to come in and win the starting job when Osweiler left. He reminded fans of Cam Newton in terms of the way he looked and played the game. Eubank had great highlight tapes but could never put it together on the field for ASU.
Best Player: Vi Teofilo
This came down to Hubner and Teofilo. While Hubner made the bigger short-term impact, especially in 2012, Teofilo will leave ASU after the 2015 as a three-year starter with over 40 games played. He has been very serviceable since arriving on campus and is one of the few multi-year starters to emerge from this class.
Note: Bercovici has a great chance to emerge as the best player from this class after next season but as of now he has not made a large enough lasting impact.
Re-ranking the class
- Vi Teofilo
- Josh Hubner
- Davon Coleman
- Mike Bercovici
- Mo Latu