A preseason All-American, Burfict should be face of the program

Jun 2, 2011, 9:56 PM | Updated: Jun 6, 2011, 4:28 pm

Vontaze Burfict is the best player the Arizona State Sun Devils have.

A preseason All-American, the junior linebacker is known for making plays on Saturdays and terrorizing opposing offenses.

One thing he is not known for, however, is talking to the media.

“I don’t even know what he looks like and I’m in the media,” said 3TV’s Tim Ring on Sports 620 KTAR’s Sports Interactive Thursday. “I don’t understand why he is shielded from the media.

“Here is a guy that could be the face of your program…here’s a guy that could single-handedly sell tickets. Get him out there. Get him on the Sunday night sports shows, get his face shown. Let fans and people in the Valley get to know this guy and maybe they’ll go buy a ticket.”

The problem, and Ring mentioned it, is that Burfict’s reputation is not exactly pristine. He’s had on-field issues throughout his time in Tempe, and for every great play he makes he tends to make a mistake or two, some of which have cost his team games.

But, as Sports 620 KTAR’s Paul Calvisi said, Burfict is the type of player fans pay to see, which is something the fan-strapped Devils should be thinking about.

“By far the most compelling player in an ASU football uniform,” he said. “You can’t take your eyes off number seven when he is on the field.

“I don’t get it, why would you not leverage that, why would you not capitalize on that, especially in this saturated sports market?”

It’s an interesting idea. Generally teams put their quarterbacks out front and center, but ASU’s best player is on the defensive side of the ball.

However, Arizona State has likely weighed the good vs. the bad when it comes to their stud linebacker, and up to this point have decided it’s best to let Burfict make his mark on the field rather than off it.

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A preseason All-American, Burfict should be face of the program