Advantage Stoops…but not until 2011

Mike Stoops just went one-up on his rival down the road in Tempe.  At least on paper.

Word came out of Oklahoma last week that one of its rising young football stars had decided to commit to the University of Arizona.  And now the Wildcats are apparently confirming the verbal commitment from Daxx Garman.

The 16-year-old is just a junior and has had a recent run of indecision regarding his future.  His high school team had to forfeit six games last season, leaving them out of the state playoffs.  It seems Garman failed to file a hardship waiver following a transfer to the school.  Now he’s attending a different high school, but isn’t sure if he will stay there for his senior year; he’s expected to make another move, this time to football powerhouse Southlake Carrroll HS.

But he apparently gathered enough focus to decide on playing for Arizona after his senior year.  Even though he had an offer from North Carolina and had additional interest from a handful of other schools, including big names such as Oklahoma, Oklahoma State, Oregon, Texas Tech, and UCLA.

Assuming he follows through with his commitment a year from now, Garman could play a significant role in the future of Arizona football.  He threw for 2,107 yards and 23 TDs last season, and that was in just eight games.

Garman’s commitment helps soothe the sting still being felt in Tucson when quarterback Matt Brown decommitted last month.  The Cats were hoping for big things from Brown, who listed as the 11th-best dual-threat QB in the nation.  He threw for 2,412 yards and 24 touchdowns and rushed for 1,166 yards and 12 touchdowns in his senior year at Allen, Tex.

Brown was a casualty of the fall-out that resulted from the departure of UofA offensive coordinator Sonny Dykes, who played a prominent role in recruiting Brown.   Dykes left to become the head coach at Louisiana Tech.

At the time he decommitted, he was the only quarterback the Cats had in the 2010 recruiting class.  They’ve since added another Texas product, Cameron Allerheiligens, who comes with a respectable resume: All-District MVP who was a .669 passer who threw for 2,635 yards and 24 touchdowns.

But Erickson at Arizona State landed Taylor Kelly in this recruiting class, a dual-threat 6’3″ QB from Idaho who was the Gatorade Idaho Player of the Year.  He led his team to a 5A state title his senior year, throwing for 2,509 yards and 22 touchdowns, and adding another 1,005 yards on the ground and 10 more TDs.

So, until Garman gets on campus in Tucson, the Sun Devils appear to have a leg up behind center.  Figuratively speaking, of course.