A signing day "surprise" last year, highly regarded athlete ANDRE FERGUSON changed his verbal commitment from Arizona State, and with offers from Colorado State, SDSU, and UTEP (among others) signed with Idaho. Ferguson had a fantastic redshirt season last year - adding 20 pounds to his 6-3 frame - and will be battling for starting duties at Defensive End for Idaho in 2008.
PLAYER PROFILE: Andre Ferguson, 6-3, 229, Redshirt-Freshman
6-3, 229, Redshirt Freshman
One of the most highly regarded recruits of the 2007 Vandal recruiting class, Andre Ferguson came to Idaho
ranked the No. 39 Outside Linebacker prospect in the nation by Scout.com
and No. 6 at that position in the state of California. Prognosticators tracked his recruitment closely, and all was believed to be done when he verballed with Arizona State
. He committed to ASU in October of 2006, in a season in which he hit triple digits in tackles. But when ASU fired coach Dirk Koetter and hired one-year Idaho head coach Dennis Erickson, Andre reopened his recruitment in late January. He stunned observers when news broke that he'd sent his LOI into the University of Idaho coaching offices, giving first year Idaho head coach Robb Akey a solid cornerstone for building the Idaho defense around. When Andre's father was asked by Scout.com West Recruiting Analyst Brandon Huffman why he chose Idaho, Ferguson's father's reply was direct: "The integrity they show."
With the excitement of the signing day surprise behind him, he could focus his attention on playing the game. He joined the Vandal program last fall, and given the depth the team had within its linebacking and defensive end depth chart, was able to redshirt the 2007 season.
Ferguson moves into No.2 on the Rush End defensive end depth chart for Idaho.
The year was a good one, as he prepared to move into the Vandal depth chart at defensive end. Andre added 20 pounds to his 6-3 frame, and hit the weight room hard. He came to Moscow with a 500+ pound squat, and spent the redshirt year developing his upper body strength.
With the Silver and Gold spring game fast approaching (next Friday night at 7:00 pm PST in the ASUI-Kibbie Athletic Center), the Idaho defensive depth chart is taking form. And as expected, a significant amount of young talent will be a major part of the Vandal D in 2008.
Andre is currently backing up redshirt senior Taylor Rust
(6-2, 231), a southern Idaho native who burst onto the scene last fall to start all 12 games for the Vandals. With Andre's size (6-3, 229), he gives Idaho a solid 1-2 punch coming off the edge from the rush end position. In this morning's scrimmage (the second of the year for the Vandals), Ferguson and Rust were effective, with each registering three tackles. Rust continues to impress, recording two QB sacks and three tackles for loss in the scrimmage. With Rust and Ferguson (as well as the rest of the depth chart and an impressive group of DEs coming in this fall), the rush end should be a position of strength for Idaho in 2008.
We will continue to provide updates on Ferguson and the rest of the Vandals as they prepare for the 2008 season opener at the University of Arizona