The Sun Devils are back for the 2023 football season with a lot of new faces as well as some old, and under new and exciting leadership. Let’s take a dive into some of the key players that are coming to this year’s squad.
First the quarterback room, Arizona State lost their starter from a year ago in Emory Jones to the transfer portal, leaving Trenton Bourguet who filled in parts of last season when Jones went down with injury. However, first year head coach Kenny Dillingham wasted no time dipping into the transfer portal himself in an effort to rebuild a broken team marred by transfers leaving, graduations, and a shadow of uncertainty left over from the previous regimes recruiting scandal.
Dillingham was able to secure the commitment of Notre Dame transfer Drew Pyne, who was one of the highest touted prospect QB’s in the transfer portal and coming out of New Canaan high school in 2020. Pyne saw limited time when he started out at Notre Dame, however, in a starting role last year, he went 8-3, passing for over 2,000 yards (22 TDs – 6 INTs) on just below 65% completion, while also rushing for 108 yards on 47 carries (2 TDs).
Dillingham then added another transfer, this time grabbing former Chandler high school and BYU second string QB Jacob Conover. Conover, another signee in the class of 2020, never really had the chance to perform at BYU, logging just 2 snaps in 2 games last year, an incomplete pass and a rush for 5 yards.
The next order of business for the Sun Devils was to make sure they had even more depth at one of the most important positions on the field, and they did just that. Coach Dillingham was able to secure the recruitment of Freshman (now starter) Jaden Rashada. Rashada was a highly evaluated recruit, garnering 4 star status as well as being in the top 10 for his position in the country. He looks to be the future of this Arizona State offense barring injury, early declaration for the draft, or transferring, although he has some steep competition with transfer Drew Pyne who was assumed to be the starter before going down with injury late in fall camp.
Under a first year head coach, being able to put together a strong quarterback room surely is a good sign to Arizona State fans everywhere. With hopeful optimism the future of Sun Devil football is bright.