Jake Plummer on Mike Bercovici: ‘I’m really excited to see what the kid can do’

Sep 23, 2014, 10:03 PM | Updated: 10:03 pm
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LISTEN: Jake Plummer- Former Cardinals and Sun Devils quarterback

A mellow personality, a cannon for an arm and legs that could create havoc for opposing defenses.

Former Arizona State Sun Devils quarterback Jake Plummer offered some reasons for why he is excited to watch Mike Bercovici start at quarterback for Arizona State University on Thursday as the 15th ranked Sun Devils host the 11th ranked UCLA Bruins.

Plummer was a guest of Bickley and Marotta on Arizona Sports 98.7 Tuesday, and provided some insight into what he expects in the redshirt junior’s first career start in place of an injured Taylor Kelly.

“I think obviously Taylor [Kelly] not being out there will hurt, but I don’t think it’s that big of a drop-off if [Bercovici] can go out there and play within himself and lead the team,” he said.

Plummer mentioned that Bercovici should benefit from his patience, earning the respect of teammates and fans after choosing to stay in Tempe as a backup after losing the starting quarterback battle to Kelly a couple years ago.

“Being the quarterback and being well respected across the team as a guy who stuck it out when he could have transferred, I have a lot of respect for Bercovici for sticking around and waiting for his opportunity,” he said. “This isn’t how he wanted it to come, but now he’s got a chance to step out there and we get to see what he has now.”

One of the perceived problems with Bercovici filling in for Kelly is the possibility that the former can’t match the latter’s abilities as a runner. But while Kelly has 168 rushing yards and two touchdowns this season in three games, Plummer does not see Bercovici struggling with that part of the offense.

“What I think he’s going to excel at this week is his legs. What they can still do, what Taylor does so well, is that read-option,” he said. “Whatever Bercovici can do throwing the ball, I know that all it takes to running is to have your head on a swivel and being an athlete, and he’s got that down.”

Quarterback is not the only question mark this week for the Sun Devils, as the defense struggled in their last game against Colorado.

The defense surrendered 545 total yards against the Buffaloes, allowing 232 on the ground and 6.3 yards per carry. Plummer sees this game against UCLA as a great chance for the young defense to redeem itself.

“Defensively, they are going to continue to get better. I think they just have to focus on the fundamentals,” he said. “They had a whole bye week and time to look back at all the film and all the mistakes they made and hopefully shore it up a little bit.”

Thursday’s game starts at 7 p.m. at Sun Devil Stadium in Tempe and can be heard on ESPN Phoenix 620.

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