Introducing the 2006 Class - Jeff Bereuter

Persistence in recruiting isn't an option, it's a necessity. If a verbally committed player gives other schools the green light to continue to pursue him, one should heed his words and vigorously pursue. The MacArthur HS linebacker wanted to see what the Sun Devils were all about, and what he witnessed was ultimately strong enough to sway him towards the maroon and gold.

"I was contacted by (former ASU defensive line) Coach Monachino right after my junior season," recalled the 6-3 225 Jeff Bereuter. "When Arizona State recruited me, I told them from the start I wasn't interested, because I committed early to Oklahoma State. He kept nagging me and nagging me (smile), and convinced me to just come on a visit and look at it. I always said even though I'm committed, I want to keep my options open and do what's best for me."

Many recruits are very enamored by that first scholarship offer, and proceed to make an early verbal commitment. This was also the case with the MacArthur linebacker, who pledged to Oklahoma State in the spring of 2005. "There were the first big Division I team to offer me," explained Bereuter, "and I already saw the campus during junior day and I liked it – it was the first campus that I saw. So when they offered me, I committed without seeing anywhere else. The fact that they were close to home also helped my decision."

Having said all that, why did the incoming ASU freshman change his mind? "Things just fell into place," he replied. "I wanted to go to Arizona State, but mom really didn't want me to. So, I was trying to convince her, and if I would go to Oklahoma State it really would be for her. Texas Tech was another option for me, but then they took back the offer they gave me. Oklahoma State and I had a confrontation about me taking a trip to Arizona State and that was pretty much the icing on the cake." He added Notre Dame had offered him a scholarship as well.

Bereuter came, saw, and fell in love with Sun Devil country. He even offered a very unique factor that impressed him about the Sun Devils during his visit. "During my recruiting trip, it really felt like home," he remarked. "Tempe to Phoenix, is like Irving to Dallas. I know this sounds weird but I also liked the racial unity. Everywhere else I visited, the white folks would hang out with white folks, Hispanics with Hispanics…at Arizona State everyone would hang out with everyone else and I liked that."

Coming to ASU, the linebacker will join two other Dallas area high school stars, Dimitri Nance and Saia Falahola. Bereuter is very familiar with that duo and their skills. "We played each other two straight years for the district championship," he said. "The first year we won it, and the second year we both had a share of it…Nance is so underrated. He's had a great offensive line and I think that's why he was underrated. People were saying that with that line anybody could be a good running back. He's probably one the hardest runners that I had to try to take down – he keeps his feet moving all the time. He's just a genetic freak and a strong guy."

"It's nice to have some kids from Dallas on the same team," continued Bereuter, "and it's kinda of weird having them as teammates after playing against them the last two years. Me and Saia would go head-to-head and rip each other apart every time (smile). It will be fun getting out there and hanging out with them."

The two aforementioned players, along with Bereuter, racked up a sizeable amount of accolades last season. In 2005 he was selected to the 5A All-District first-team (an honor he enjoyed also as a junior), made the 2005 All-Region team, and was named to the All-City team. During his junior campaign he registered 115 tackles, including 13 tackles for loss, one quarterback sack, four forced fumbles, one fumble recovered and four pass deflections.

"What I really got recruited for was my versatile play," he said of his attributes. "I can play inside and outside the box. I played in a 4-2-5 defense, where sometimes I had play one-on-one with wide receivers, and sometimes play defensive end. I'm not the fastest guy in the 40 (yard dash), but I have good on-field speed. I definitely need to get stronger. I do have the frame, but not yet the physique and that's what I'm gonna have to work on this summer."

The Sun Devils' 2006 recruiting class, was highlighted by a rather large number of linebackers, five in all. Needless to say that this scenario is appealing to players like Bereuter, who isn't afraid to jockey for a spot with so many newcomers, such as himself, at his position. "I love it," he stated. "It's competition, and that will always make you a better player. I'm excited to get it going and competing with those guys." He will actually will be rooming up with one of those linebackers, Travis Goethel, as they both arrive in Tempe this weekend for the school's bridge program.

When an original commitment from one school to another, there's an obvious need to have that decision pay early dividends. However, Jeff Bereuter is willing to be patient. "Naturally, I want to come in and contribute right away," he said. "I know that he team isn't very deep at linebacker and there's definitely an opportunity to come in and contribute right away. I'm definitely gonna work hard to at least come off the bench and play, if not start. Redshirting won't be a problem for me. I sat on the bench before and I know how to handle that. I'm gonna take that year to get better, and everything will fall into place."

Recruit Profile

Name

Jeff Bereuter

High School

MacArthur HS (Irving, Tex.)

Position

LB

Height

6-3

Weight

225

Date of birth

6/12/87

Birthplace

Dallas, Tex.

Nickname

"I used to flop a lot when I ran, so my buddies called me Forrest, as in Forrest Gump (smile)."

Favorite TV show

"CSI"

Favorite movie

"Goodfellas"

Favorite singer/band

"311"

Favorite food

"Mexican"

Favorite drink

"Water"

Favorite athlete

"Jack Lambert"

Favorite pro team

"Dallas Mavericks"

Person you most admire

"My mother – she persevered through so much."

First football memory

"I was about 12. My mom didn't let me play football, because she thought it was too dangerous, and at the end of the year I made the all-star team."

One thing most people don't know about me

"I like ‘Star Wars' (laughs)."

Why did you choose ASU?

"It felt like home more than any other school I visited."

Where do you want to be in ten years?

"In a house with a family and a good job. I have dreams playing at the next level, if that doesn't work out I just want to have a good job."

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