Although many Arizona football recruits attribute their commitments directly to playing for head coach Rich Rodriguez, Arizona offensive coordinator Rod Smith's contributions can’t be overlooked either.
In La Jolla (Calif.) Country Day dual-threat quarterback Braxton Burmeister, Smith helped land the cornerstone of the 2017 recruiting class.
“I would say a big part of my commitment was Coach Smith,” Burmeister said. “He was on me early and just had a lot of good things to say about my game.
"It seemed like he really wanted me before anyone else. He is also just a really good coach who is easy to talk with. When I’m talking to Coach Smith it seems that I can talk about anything, not just football."
When recruiting Burmeister, Smith made it clear why Arizona wanted him.
“He says I have a really quick release and I can make some plays with my feet," Burmeister said. "I was always looking for a dynamic offense that could take advantage of all my skills and I definitely found that.”
Even though he pledged to Arizona early, other schools are still gauging Burmeister’s interest.
“All that stuff really doesn’t matter to me," he said. "I wouldn’t have committed to Arizona at such an early age if I wasn’t totally sure. There are a lot of schools that are good teams for most people, but at Arizona everything just seemed perfect.”
Burmeister is also excited about the academic part of college life.
“I’m going to major in journalism or broadcasting," he said. "Something like that which will keep me in sports. It’s something that I’ve been looking at for awhile.”