Arizona State head coach Todd Graham has said what he’s trying to do with his football program in two years usually takes five. What’s enabled them to have such early success, according to Graham, is the coaches have tailored the system to fit the players they already had.
“We really did a lot of work in the front end of this really planning and taking our time that first spring to really evaluating our personnel,” Graham said. “I’m adapting constantly every day to the personnel.”
One example Graham gave was how he and the coaches found what Gannon Conway, one of the team’s breakout stars, was skilled at and adjusted the defense to fit him.
“When Gannon sees you’re going to change this to fit him, they’re motivated to do it,” the coach said. “The scheme is derived and designed from them, and I think that’s helped a great deal.”
However, Graham didn’t take all of the credit, praising the situation he took over from Dennis Erickson and the group of players he has to work with.
“I think we’re very fortunate to come in here,” Graham said. “And then we’ve added things to it. We’ve added a Marion Grice, a Jaelen Strong, a D.J. Foster, Jaxon Hood.
“We’ve just got really good players and we’ve got a scheme that matches their abilities, and I think that’s what makes it all work.”