Six junior college players are among the 27 signees in coach Dennis Erickson's fourth recruiting class at Arizona State, a list heavy with beefy linemen.
At the top is 6-foot-8, 320-pound offensive lineman Brice Schwab out of Palomar (Calif.) College. Schwab withdrew his initial commitment to Southern California when coach Pete Carroll left for the NFL.
The group also includes five wide receivers, led by George Bell from Southwestern (Calif.) Community College and Mike Willie of Cerritos (Calif.) Community College.
The 19 high school recruits include 6-8 quarterback Taylor Kelly of Eagle, Idaho.
Kelly made a verbal commitment to Nevada last July but changed his mind after a visit to Tempe and talks with the Sun Devils' new offensive coordinator Noel Mazzone. Erickson said Kelly's idol growing up was another quarterback from the Boise area, former Arizona State star Jake Plummer.
"I was very impressed when I watched him and talked to him and watched him play basketball," Erickson said at his news conference on Wednesday. "I was totally convinced that he was the guy. ... I told him upfront, 'You're going to be compared to one guy when you come here. Just be ready for that.'
"He has no fear. If he can become as good as Jake, we're in pretty good shape."
Kelly is among several of the high school recruits that are expected sit out next season as redshirts.
But immediate help is anticipated from the junior college recruits as Erickson attempts to regroup after a 4-8 season. Since ASU went 5-7 in 2008, Erickson has had consecutive losing seasons for the first time in his 21 years as a college coach.
"I sat back and looked at our team, where we have to get better to compete for a Pac-10 championship next year," Erickson said. "We thought we need a couple junior college offensive linemen, which we did in this class. We need continue to improve our speed and skill at the wide receiver spot and at running back."
Schwab, from West Sunbury, Pa., had offers from a long list of major football programs, including Penn State, Oklahoma, LSU, Florida State and Arkansas. He also turned down offers from Pac-10 schools USC, UCLA, Arizona and Washington.
"We really think he has a chance to be one of the better ones that I've been around," Erickson said.
The coach said the addition of Bell and Willie should enhance the Sun Devils' big-play potential.
Bell, who committed to ASU last June, has been timed at 4.42 seconds in the 40-yard dash.
"I really think he has the potential to be something special," Erickson said.
The coach also believes he has a gem in Willie, who is 6-4 and weighs 215 pounds. Erickson said the Californian reminds him of T.J. Houshmandzadeh, who also came from Cerritos and starred for Erickson at Oregon State.
Arizona State’s 2010 recruiting class
|Ramon Abreu||DB||5-10||180||Tempe||Marcos de Niza HS|
|Lee Adams||DE||6-2||255||Corona, Calif.||Centennial HS|
|Sil Ajawara||OL||6-4||305||Rancho Santa Magarita||Tesoro HS|
|Kevin Anderson||WR||6-1||185||Lakewood, Calif.||Lakewood HS|
|George Bell||WR||6-3||195||San Diego||Southwestern CC|
|Carl Bradford||LB||6-1||230||Norco, Calif.||Norco HS|
|Alden Darby||DB||5-11||170||Long Beach, Calif.||Millikan HS|
|Chris DeArmas||OL||6-4||305||Miami, Fla.||El Camino CC|
|Jamil Douglas||OL||6-5||252||Cypress, Calif.||Cypress HS|
|Eddie Elder||DB||6-0||190||Oakland, Calif.||College of San Mateo|
|Josh Fulton||TE||6-5||235||Phoenix||St. Mary's HS|
|Alex Garoutte||K||6-1||180||Phoenix||Brophy HS|
|Taylor Kelly||QB||6-3||185||Eagle, Idaho||Eagle HS|
|Randy Knust||WR||6-3||200||The Woodlands, Texas||Woodlands HS|
|Deantre Lewis||RB||5-10||189||Norco, Calif.||Norco HS|
|Jordan McDonald||DE||6-4||225||Scottsdale||Saguaro HS|
|Kyle Middlebr||ATH||5-9||176||Fountain Valley, Calif.||Fountain Valley HS|
|Nduka Onyeali||DE||6-1||240||Denver, Colo.||Mullen HS|
|Brice Schwab||OL||6-8||320||West Sunbury, Pa.||Palomar College|
|Aderious Simmons||OL||6-7||310||Marrero, La.||El Camino CC|
|Devan Spann||CB||5-11||175||Gardena, Calif.||Junipero Serra HS|
|Tyler Sulka||OL||6-5||270||Sherman Oaks, Calif.||Notre Dame HS|
|Joita Te'l||DL||6-5||255||Oceanside, Calif.||El Camino HS|
|Calvin Tonga||DT||6-4||320||Riverside, Calif.||Arlington HS|
|Taylor Walstad||RB||5-11||210||Chandler||Chandler HS|
|Damien Williams||RB||6-0||205||San Diego, Calif.||Mira Mesa HS|
|Mike Willie||WR||6-3||215||Norwalk, Calif.||Cerritos CC|