Arizona State has lagged behind in the 2014 recruiting class, but it did land its biggest recruit on Tuesday in playmaker Tyler Whiley. Maybe this is a sign of things picking up for the upcoming program in the Pac-12.
The 4-star versatile player committed after visiting with the Sun Devils, according to Richard Obert of AZCentral. The commitment does come as a slight surprise considering Whiley was just now seeing the offers pile up.
Since March, schools such as UCLA, Tennessee, Oklahoma State and Michigan State have offered him. Still, Whiley decided to remain close to his home in Paradise Valley, Ariz.
Whiley is a great addition to Arizona State, as he can play just about any position on the field. At 6'1", 190 pounds, he can line up in any spot at wide receiver, but he also has experience playing cornerback and could fit best on defense.
According to Whiley's high school coach, David Huffine, Arizona State recruited him to play offense, per the Obert report.
“I think they’re looking at him on offense,” Chaparral coach David Huffine said. “Obviously, being as athletic as he is, that can change. They really like him, that he is able to do a lot of things.”
Regardless of the plan, the coaching staff would be foolish to limit Whiley to just one position. He has terrific speed and a rare second gear that he uses once he gets in the open field. He can outrun defenders with ease, and he has impressive ball skills for a two-way player.
Defensively, Whiley has great size to become a nightmare at cornerback. He also isn't afraid to help out in run support and set the edge if needed. With this unusual physical style of play, a possibility of moving to safety wouldn't be surprising.
Whatever Arizona State decides to do with Whiley's talent, the program has certainly picked up a game-changer. Last season, he caught 36 passes for 610 yards and 10 touchdowns, per the report.