Arizona State to start true freshman QB Jaden Rashada

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Arizona State will reportedly start a true freshman at quarterback as it begins a new era under first-year head coach Kenny Dillingham.

According to multiple reports, Jaden Rashada will be ASU’s starter for the season opener versus Southern Utah on Aug. 31. Arizona Sports’ Josh Gambadoro was first to report the news.

Rashada beat out senior Trenton Bourguet to win the job. Drew Pyne, a Notre Dame transfer, was also competing for the starting role but he injured his hamstring on Aug. 12 during a team scrimmage. It’s unclear how long Pyne will be sidelined; Dillingham characterized Pyne’s injury as a “little minor hamstring tear.”

Rashada was a four-star recruit from Pittsburg, California, in the class of 2023 who signed with Arizona State after initially being a member of Florida’s recruiting class. However, he was released from his national letter of intent with the Gators amid a highly-publicized NIL deal gone bad and later committed to play for the Sun Devils.

ASU last started a true freshman quarterback in 2019 when Jayden Daniels, now at LSU, led the offense to open Herm Edwards’ second season as head coach.

ORLANDO, FL - JANUARY 03: Team Speed quarterback Jaden Rashada (5) before the Under Armour Next All-America Football Gameon January 03, 2023, at Camping World Stadium in Orlando, FL. (Photo by Chris Leduc/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images)

ORLANDO, FL – JANUARY 03: Team Speed quarterback Jaden Rashada (5) before the Under Armour Next All-America Football Gameon January 03, 2023, at Camping World Stadium in Orlando, FL. (Photo by Chris Leduc/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images)

Bourguet, a former walk-on, has been at ASU since 2019. He made five starts last fall as the Sun Devils went 3-9. He threw for 1,490 yards, 11 touchdowns and six interceptions while completing 71.1% of his attempts.

Pyne was considered the favorite to start entering camp after starting 10 games at Notre Dame last fall. Pyne opened the season as ND’s backup, but he was thrust into the starting role following an injury to Tyler Buchner. Pyne threw for 2,021 yards, 22 touchdowns and six interceptions, but had several uneven performances where he struggled with accuracy and decision-making.

ASU is entering its first season under Dillingham, a 33-year-old Arizona native who has had stints as the offensive coordinator at Memphis, Auburn, Florida State and Oregon.

After opening the season versus Southern Utah, an FCS team, next Thursday, the Sun Devils will host Oklahoma State on Sept. 9.

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