Dennis Erickson Punked by Vontaze Burfict at End of Last Night's Loss to Cal

Categories: Sports
Back about a hundred years ago (actually it was September 24) just after Arizona State's high point of this lost football season, a 43-22 win over USC, team defensive coordinator Craig Bray spoke to an Arizona Republic reporter about "superstar" linebacker Vontaze Burfict.

Dennis Erickson 2.jpg
A reminder of Dennis Erickson's nine lives--his stint with the NFL
​Burfict had gotten about as much notoriety in his sophomore season at ASU for collecting a bushel of especially ill-timed personal foul penalties as for his playing ability, which at times has been superior.

He vowed to keep himself under control during the 2011 season, and yet retain the super-aggressiveness that had become his stock in trade.

After the USC game, which included a high-profile finger-pointing moment by Burfict at the Trojans' star quarterback Matt Barkley, Coach Bray noted that Vontaze needed to return to his old ways of being "an angry, violent person from snap to whistle."

The problem (one of many) during last night's 47-38 loss to the Cal Golden Bears came after the whistle, and after head coach Dennis Erickson finally had seen enough and yanked Burfict out for the duration during a critical part of the game.  
Burfict seemed to be having an okay game to that point, nothing of All-American stature certainly, but a decent enough outing with a solo tackle here and there. 

ASU already had been eliminated (mercifully) earlier in the day from having a chance at a berth in next week's Pac-12 championship, which made the Cal game a "pride" thing more than anything else. (Utah's upset loss to Colorado did in the Devils' and handed mediocre UCLA the Pac-12 South championship).

The second half started with a one-point ASU lead, and most of the dwindling number of fans in the stands (generously 10,000 by the end of the game) and watching on ESPN sensed that the last team with the ball probably would win the thing.

That turned out not to be the case, in part because of yet two more frighteningly immature personal fouls against Burfit--both late hits that were more shoves than anything else--right in front of the refs. 

Erickson pulled Burfict from the game for good, which left the already depleted Sun Devils' defense in an even worse way.

This is when it got really ugly.

The ESPN cameras showed Burfict sitting on a bench on the sidelines, surrounded by his "posse," which seemed to be redshirted players and some deep subs.

He honestly didn't seem all that upset about being sat, not at all.

Late in the fourth quarter with the outcome now decided in Cal's favor, the cameras again zoomed in on Burfict, who was facing away from the field, obviously holding court with his head was draped in a towel.

Whatever ASU's "superstar" was yipping about must have been pretty darned funny, because his crew was laughing fairly uproariously.

If any one visual could speak to the demise of ASU's football program and of Coach Erickson at the helm, it was that one.

Staring into space about 20 feet away, Erickson looked very tired and quite old--maybe the right word is resigned to his fate. 

He'll be fired as a multi-millionaire, or at least he should be a rich guy by this point. Not bad for coaching a sport. 

But it's over for him at ASU, and he knows it.

Burfict, too.

 

 


My Voice Nation Help
37 comments
Bwillis8
Bwillis8

Ezekiel Bishop 2011 recruit will help bring the sundevils back to where they need to be.

Shan1014
Shan1014

Burfict  was not an All-American this season nor was he a player that anyone would want on their team.  He was being spiteful towards Erickson in the last game against California.  But Erickson should have taught him a lesson and sat him the first game of his college career instead of his last.  Burfict is still so immature he may have learned something at that point. He will probably make a ton of money in his lifetime but It won't matter to these teammates.  He will always be a quitter to them and that is something he will never be able change.

Woofer86
Woofer86

Ericksen has been the whore of West coach coaching for many years. He screwed Idaho big time to come to ASU after committing to stay for 4 years. What goes around comes around. Not many people feel sorry for the guy.His star linebacker is a complete idiot.

Folfclover
Folfclover

Burfict will in all likelihood be a raider or a Bengal!

Cw2man
Cw2man

You're right he won't be back at ASU next year but he won't end up in the NFL either.  I bet he ends up as "Dick" Rodriquez' Defensive Coordinator at the u of a.

No_one
No_one

Seems a shame to pay Erickson for mediocrity.  I'll be happy to see him gone.  I wish the Cardinals would also move out, but perhaps another subject.

Cy Phy
Cy Phy

Dennis Erickson will land on his feet. Vontaze Burfict will not. He will enter the NFL draft and discover that what everyone has been telling him all these years, that he'll be playing on Sunday, wasn't true. He doesn't have the physical size and mental ability to be a consistent player in the NFL. 

Srs
Srs

Burfict and ASU players on the sidelines last night = the most disrespectful and disgusting show in all of college football. God help the coach that inherits this group of thugs.

Marcy
Marcy

Burfict won't be back.  His college career is over and I sense he'll have a short NFL career as well and end up another washed up, broke, ex-NFL player by age 26.

Cy Phy
Cy Phy

Agree...if Burfict was smart, he'd invest his signing bonus. But he'll probably blow it on the usual stuff, and will end up broke and washed-up. Too bad he didn't have the intellectual skills to succeed in football and society.

Solitary Fracture
Solitary Fracture

Funny thing I saw a bunch of asu fans laughing just like Burfict's posse.  I was sitting right in front of that scene.  I just couldn't believe how classless this whole School has become.  Fans, players AD everyone doesn't give a f***ing Rip.  Sad.  A few of us have been calling for Ericksons head for 3 plus years now.  But ASU FANS are Clueless.  At this point I don't give a damn I will just go to Softball games for now on.  As far as I am concerned FOOTBALL at ASU is dead to me.  Might as well keep Love and Erickson the Majority of the Football fans deserve them.

PTCGAZ
PTCGAZ

ASU sucks, always has and always will.

I am so glad that OSU beat them in the 96(I think) rose bowl!

devil
devil

Paul- you are certainly entitled to your editorial opinion of Vontaze and DE (which I agree with, by the way), but show some professionalism and respect for your subject by getting BURFICT's name correct... IT'S NOT BURFIT!!!! Hack.

Frank
Frank

I don't recall seeing much of VB last night. Did he get benched following another penalty or did he quit on his teamates again?

Subwaysteve6
Subwaysteve6

Funny...

Subwaysteve6
Subwaysteve6

I think it is spelled right, at least what I read.

Devil
Devil

Maybe when he posts the article one more time with edits, he'll correct them all: he's still missing 1: "immature personal fouls against Burfit--". Hopefully, the 3rd edit will be the charm.

PTCGAZ
PTCGAZ

it was spelled right.

Now Trending

Phoenix Concert Tickets

From the Vault

 

Loading...