ASU’s Todd Graham: Changing quarterbacks ‘has never entered my mind’
It’s a blatant understatement, but the 2015 season hasn’t gone the way anybody thought it would for the Arizona State Sun Devils.
Many picked Todd Graham’s team to win the Pac-12 South. A few others projected ASU into this year’s College Football Playoff as conference champions.
Instead, the Sun Devils are 4-5 heading into Saturday’s Homecoming game against the Washington Huskies (4-5) at Sun Devil Stadium. They need two wins in their last three games to even secure bowl eligibility.
The fact that ASU’s publicly stated goals are now unreachable has some fans clamoring for a change at quarterback.
Senior Mike Bercovici has started every game for Arizona State, completing 59 percent (219-of-370) of his passes for 2,473 yards with 19 touchdowns and eight interceptions. His efficiency rating of 128.0 ranks ninth out of 11 qualified Pac-12 quarterbacks.
And with only three or four games left in his college career, some fans are wondering what the other ASU signal callers — namely redshirt freshman Manny Wilkins — have to offer.
Graham isn’t about to make that move.
“The deal is we have a group of seniors and a football team, that as their leader and their coach, I committed to them that we’re going to give it everything we’ve got on every single play, period,” Graham told Doug and Wolf Friday morning on Arizona Sports 98.7 FM. “Looking past anything other than this week and this year and these seniors and what we’re trying to accomplish in the 2015 season would be totall against everything I teach them about character.
“That’s never even entered my mind.”
Bercovici has played the vast majority of snaps this season for the Sun Devils. Wilkins saw his first collegiate action in a 48-23 win over Colorado on Oct. 10, but did not attempt a pass.
Arizona State also has true freshmen Brady White and Bryce Perkins on the roster. White, who hails from Newhall, Calif., was a four-star recruit and ranked as the nation’s second-best pro style quarterback prospect in the class of 2015 by Rivals.com. Only UCLA’s Josh Rosen ranked higher.
Perkins, a 2015 graduate of Chandler High in the Valley, was a three-star recruit, according to Rivals.