On Tuesday morning, news broke that another Sun Devil made a preseason watch list. Defensive back Chase Lucas’ name can be found on the Bronco Nagurski preseason watch list for most outstanding defensive player.
Lucas, a redshirt sophomore, had an outstanding first redshirt freshman campaign in Tempe. He was tied for the team-lead in interceptions with two and held sole possession atop of pass breakups with eight. The eight also ranked him ninth in the conference.
His play on the field earned him Pac-12 Second Team at his position, a rarity for a freshman. Former UCLA Bruin linebacker Myles Jack was the last defensive freshman to make the team in 2013. And the last defensive back to do so was Brandon Browner during his time at Oregon State in 2003.
The biggest award Lucas brought in last year, however, was a spot on the USA Today Freshman All-America Team after he recorded 59 tackles and a pair of interceptions.
After his teammates quarterback Manny Wilkins (Maxwell, O’Brien), running back Eno Benjamin (Walker), wide receiver N’Keal Harry (Maxwell, Biletnikoff) and center Cohl Cabral (Remington) were named to their position preseason watch lists, Lucas becomes the first Arizona State defender named to one.
Lucas ranked fifth for lowest completion percentage allowed even though he was the conference’s most-targeted cornerback. It certainly helps when he faces his former high school teammate in Harry every day at practice.