Arizona State's Will Sutton honored with Pat Tillman No. 42 jersey
[dropcap]A[/dropcap]rizona State coach Todd Graham selected defensive tackle Will Sutton to wear the camouflaged Pat Tillman No. 42 jersey in spring practice.
Graham began the tradition last year, with safety Alden Darby receiving the jersey. It’s given to a player who demonstrates leadership and toughness on and off the field.
He presented the jersey to Sutton at a team meeting Thursday.
“This is not going to be some fluff deal,” Graham said. “I said, ‘Will has earned this jersey. The key to our success is that he keeps it.’ We challenged him with that.”
Sutton, a senior, was named the Pac-12 Pat Tillman Defensive Player of the Year and an All-American last season. He led the conference in sacks (13) and tackles for loss (23.5).
“It’s an honor because (Tillman is) somebody who did a lot for this university and for our country at the same time,” Sutton said. “It means a lot.”
Graham said it’s up to Sutton how long he’ll keep the jersey.
“You’ve got to earn it. You’ve got to bring it every day,” he said. “I’m telling you, (Sutton has) been bringing it every day. He’s coaching the other guys. He’s telling guys this is not acceptable. He didn’t do that last year.
“He was a great player last year but he didn’t do all those things.”
Photo credit: Craig Grialou / Arizona Sports