Our countdown of the Pac-12’s top 25 preseason players in 2013 continues.
A lot of good players, as it happens every year, won’t make the preseason list. It is in their hands to make the postseason list.
You can review our 2012 postseason top 25 here.
No. 12, Taylor Kelly, QB, Arizona State
2012 numbers: Completed 67.1 percent of his throws (241-of-359) for 3,039 yards with 29 touchdowns to nine interceptions. The versatile QB also rushed for 516 yards and a touchdown.
2012 postseason ranking: No. 24.
Making the case for Kelly: He seemingly came out of nowhere to not only snatch the starting QB gig in the fall, but then he went on to be one of the league’s and nation’s most efficient quarterbacks. He was second in the Pac-12 in efficiency and eighth nationally, capping a splendid first season with a 17-of-19 performance and four touchdowns (plus one rushing) in the Kraft Fight Hunger Bowl win over Navy. Even bigger things are expected from him in 2013 as he returns some dynamic playmakers around him in Marion Grice, D.J. Foster and Chris Coyle. How important is Kelly’s efficiency to the Sun Devils? In their eight wins last season, Kelly completed 71.2 percent of his throws with 21 touchdowns and zero interceptions. In their five losses, he completed just 61.2 percent of his passes with eight touchdowns to nine interceptions. In the business, we call that a trend. As Kelly goes, so goes the ASU offense. He’ll have an opportunistic defense behind him and if he takes even greater strides in 2013, some of the preseason ASU hype will be justified.
13. Austin Seferian Jenkins, TE, Washington
14. De'Anthony Thomas, RB, Oregon
15. Bishop Sankey, RB, Washington
16. Shayne Skov, LB, Stanford
17. Kevin Hogan, QB, Stanford
18. Xavier Su'a-Filo, OL, UCLA
19. Morgan Breslin, OLB, USC
20. Colt Lyerla, TE, Oregon
21. Carl Bradford, LB, Arizona State
22. Brandin Cooks, WR, Oregon State
23. Hroniss Grasu, C, Oregon
24. Marion Grice, RB, Arizona State
25. Ben Gardner, DE, Stanford