Taylor Kelly takes early lead in ASU QB competition

Arizona Sports News online

Practice makes perfect.

The old saying could be said for Arizona State redshirt sophomore quarterback Taylor Kelly.

Okay, maybe not perfect but certainly much improved. The 6’1, 203-pounder from Eagle, Idaho appears to have pulled ahead of fellow sophomore Michael Bercovici and redshirt freshman Michael Eubank for the Sun Devils starting spot when they open the season on August 30th against Northern Arizona University in Tempe.

So where has he seen the most improvement?

“It’s been my downfield passing,” Kelly told Brad Cesmat Wednesday on ‘Big Guy on Sports.’ “[I’m] getting comfortable with that. Throughout the summer I worked very heavy on that. In practice so far I’ve felt a lot more comfortable in the pocket…just letting [the ball] go.”

Kelly gave credit to ASU receivers Jamal Miles, J.J. Holliday, Kevin Ozier and others who ran routes and helped get one another comfortable as first-year head coach Todd Graham installs his high-octane, vertical passing game.

Whoever breaks the huddle against NAU, the Sun Devil coaching staff is excited about their young receivers and deep, diverse group of running backs including senior All Pac-12 performer Cameron Marshall.

“We have a lot of different formations and personnel groups where we can put guys in different spots and get mis-matches,” Kelly explained to Cesmat. “We have a lot of different ways to set formations and attack.”

Recruited by former Sun Devil coach Dennis Erickson who had strong ties to the area, Kelly was the top-rated prospect in Idaho when he signed with ASU after being named the 2009-10 Gatorade Idaho Football Player of the Year.

A Valley native, Eric has had a passion for the Arizona sports scene since an early age. He has covered some of the biggest events including Super Bowls, national championships and the NBA and MLB playoffs in his near 20 years in local media.