Blown leads, blown coverages, poor discipline, and blown games. All of these things have unfortunately become synonymous with ASU for the past 13 years. Every year it has been one disappointment after the other, and Dennis Erickson is continuing the tradition of mediocrity like no other Arizona State coach before him.
"I was looking for competitive traction on a higher notch and where we struggled in big games this year became problematic. Therefore, it led me to make the decision that I have made"—Lisa Love after firing Dirk Koetter (2006)
What are the odds those same words will be used against Dennis Erickson at some point soon? After this season ends with a second consecutive losing record (for the first time in a long time) they should be.
Now, a lot of ASU fans would disagree with me on this matter of firing the coach who brought us a 10 win season just two years ago for reasons varying from apparently good recruiting to the notion that Dennis is building a program that will compete with anyone in the PAC 10. Now do these hold water? Not really...
Since Erickson has arrived, recruiting has never been anywhere near the level that it should be in order to become a PAC 10 power, and in fact is showing a pattern of regressing
ASU Recruiting: overall rankings in nation and PAC 10 since 2008 class
- 2008: 17th in Nation, 4th overall in PAC 10
- 2009: 36th in Nation, 6th overall in PAC 10
- 2010 (so far): 43rd Overall in Nation, 7th in PAC 10
As you see, those aren't necessarily Eye-popping numbers, and not in the least bit the kinds of numbers that will build a program that can compete with anyone.
Now, for the hot button Issue at ASU this year: Danny Sullivan
ASU's offense in the last two years has been a joke. I say that because every time I watch Sullivan throw the ball I literally laugh at his incompetence. This man has added whole new meaning to the term "Telegraphing your receivers" as he stares down his go to receiver for 10 seconds, points to him, yells "Im going to throw it to you, ok!?!", and then throws it 10 yards above the guys head, if he is lucky enough to not have thrown another interception.
Why would a coach even start such a man? Better yet, who even offered him a football scholarship in the first place?? Sullivan probably shouldn't even be watching football, let alone starting for a division one team with a long history of good quarterbacks. It is absolutely baffling to me how Erickson doen't start someone, anybody else. The excuses I hear are "Oh, well Osweiller (freshman quarterback) isn't ready." Well Tate Forcier (Michigan) sure as hell was, and Matt Barkley (USC) also was, and these are two very competent quarterbacks.
The ineptness of Danny Sullivan, who is a senior, and the unreadiness of Brock Osweiller are two staggering accounts of the fact that Dennis Erickson can not develop players.
In a nutshell, here are some other problems at ASU that would have probably been addressed by now, if we didn't have Dennis as our coach:
- Stupid Penalties (How many personal fouls do I have to watch a game? ASU is the most penalized team in the Pac 10 by the way)
- Slow Starts (This has been a problem since 2007)
- Offense (Was bad last year, is nightmarish this year)
- Lack of Player Development (Kyle Williams/Omar Bolden Anyone?)
These are just a few of the problems that have arisen under the Dennis Erickson regime, and in a way are a continuation of the same old problems we have had under other coaches in the past, when we were more competitive than we are today.
I am a fan, and I just want to see us do better. I am tired of spending money to go watch a mediocre team lose to teams we haven't in 40 years at home (Oregon state) or watch an inferior "Quarterback" throw incompletion-interception-to the wrong receiver in that order. I can no longer stay quiet about this situation. We need change, positive change, and that change is not ever going to come with Dennis Erickson and his flawed ways.
Fork 'em Devils...