Arizona State depth chart, QB thoughts

August, 21, 2012
8/21/12
11:30
AM ET
Besides announcing the winner of its quarterback competition Monday -- Taylor Kelly -- Arizona State also released its depth chart.

You can see it here. You can even print it out, as I did, and gaze upon it as if you are the Oracle of Delphi reading the entrails of a goat.

That's exactly what Doug Haller did and here are his insights.

One of my takeaways was the 13 starters listed on offense. That includes three receivers, a tight end and H-back and two running backs.

It will be interesting to see how the Sun Devils offense develops. It's clearly going to be a hodgepodge of different things. Graham wants to be a downhill running team AND he wants to spread you out. He wants to throw downfield AND he wants to run a spread-option. He wants power AND finesse. He wants to knock you over AND fool you.

Now, this isn't exactly revolutionary. Oregon, widely and incorrectly viewed as merely fast and tricky, is perfectly capable of running right at a defense. Graham told me that his offense will most resemble what Gus Malzahn, now head coach at Arkansas State, has done through the years.

Kelly won the job for three reasons: 1. He protected the ball. 2. He's a good passer. 3. He is athletic enough to run the option and make a defense respect him with the ball in his hands.

When I visited spring practices, Mike Bercovici was clearly the best passer. He's got an A-list arm. But no defensive coordinator will worry about him running the ball.

Upon reflection, the only way Bercovici would have won the job is if his passing proved so decisively superior that Graham would be willing to cut loose a significant portion of what he wanted to do. To be fair to Bercovici, if he had the receivers Brock Osweiler did last year, he might have been able to do that.

With the momentum clearly with Kelly starting and Eubank playing and being viewed as the quarterback of the future, it will be interesting to see if Bercovici sticks around in Tempe. He certainly could help a team that is looking for a guy to fire bullets from the pocket.

Ted Miller | email

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