Former ASU Head Coach Dennis Erickson signed a small class of 20 players to join the Sun Devil football program in February 2011. Overall, Erickson’s last recruiting class was his poorest evaluated class during his tenure. Scout.com ranked it 64th overall and 11th best in the Pac-12 conference, and Rivals.com ranked ASU 57th overall and 10th best in the Pac-12 conference.
As was discussed in the Flashback 2010 Recruiting Signing Day article, rankings are just a college football fan’s discussion point from the end of the BCS Championship game until the first day of spring practice. All initial Signing Day rankings are simply an early evaluation of the potential for an individual prospect and the class overall. A true class ranking and evaluation can only be measured after their time in Tempe.
The 2011 class included five Junior College players: punter Josh Hubner, safety Kevin Ayers, wide receiver Rashad Ross, linebacker Kipeli Koniseti, defensive lineman Davon Coleman. Hubner, Ayers, and Ross have completed their Sun Devil careers while Koniseti and Coleman will play their final year in the maroon and gold in 2013.
Similar to the 2010 class, this 2011 class, with only 15 high school commits, can be split into two groups. “Group 1” members include linebacker Israel Marshall, defensive tackle David Moala, offensive lineman Brent Walker, cornerback Joe Eason, wide receiver Karl Holmes, and wide receiver Stanley Absanon. These six “Group 1” players are not part of the ASU program. “Group 2” consists of nine players including cornerback Rashad Wadood, quarterback Mike Bercovici, wide receiver Gary Chambers, defensive lineman Sean O’Grady, offensive lineman Devin Goodman, offensive lineman Vi Teofilo, offensive lineman Mo Latu, safety Ezekiel Bishop, and quarterback Michael Eubank, who continued the Corona Centennial tradition.
While the “Group 2” players are part of the Sun Devil football team, only one 2011 high school signee, right guard Teofilo, projects as a starter in 2013. The other eight players have talent and athleticism, and some are on the two-deep roster, but each has struggled seeing the field due to one reason or another. Wadood and Bishop suffered major injuries with long recovery time, and they are just returning to full speed. Bercovici and Eubank got beat out by Taylor Kelly, and even though there is a Eubank package in the offensive playbook, he was ineffective in critical times during 2012. Latu played defensive tackle during his red-shirt year under Erickson, but new Sun Devil Head Coach Todd Graham moved Latu back to the offensive line, playing center in 2012 and probably guard in 2013.
Looking back at this 2011 Signing Day class, two JC players, Coleman and Hubner, have been the biggest contributors. The nine high school players remaining have time to become major players in the program as they are only redshirt sophomores. An interesting note about this class has to do with bloodlines. The signing of Devin Goodman brought his twin brother Evan Goodman into the program in 2012 while Wadood’s younger brother, Jaleel Waddod, is a verbal commit to the 2014 class. However, the early loss of another six high school signees led Coach Graham to sign 2013 JC players Jaelen Strong, Antonio Longino, Solomon Means, and accept transfer Christian Westerman. These players are entering the program with three years remaining, joining this 2011 Signing Day class.