Arizona State Sun Devils in their second contest of the season, struggled through most of the game on offense. The Sacramento Hornets coming in on a high after an impressive 77-19 blowout of their last opponent. Coming in the Devils knew that that score spoke more about who the Hornets played rather how good they were on offense.
The ASU defense proved that to be true as they pitched a shut out first half and held the Hornets of Sacramento State to 7 total points on the hot night in the Valley.
Also coming into the game Devils star running back Eno Benjamin on the cusp of quite a few milestones as he needed 3 rushing TDs to reach 20 for his career and 114 more yards on the ground to eclipse 2000. He would fall way short of both of those goals as the Hornet defense held him to only 14 yards rushing at halftime and he finished with a mediocre 69 yards on a tough 24 carries.
The Sun Devils seemed to come in with a lack of urgency to put this team away, as they played uninspired football most of the night from an offensive standpoint.
True Freshman Jayden Daniels is yet to throw an interception on the young season, but at the same time we have yet to see him be the electric player we saw on tape coming into the year from high school.
Head Coach Hermon Edwards last week told us that he told the freshman to “to know when a play is dead, and slide” and the young quarterback has done exactly that, but the question is how long will it seem like Herm will keep the shackles on letting this kid loose.
Daniels receivers did not help him much all night as they dropped key balls that would have moved the chains, and when they did make the grabs they were killed by their own penalties. One in particular that could have been the spark to get them going and blow this thing open, was the bomb to Frank Darby that was called back because of an illegal chop block.
The entire night it felt like the Devils were playing against two teams, the Hornets and themselves.
Daniels finished a respectable 17/27 304 and a touchdown, which was not bad by the numbers but the game did not look like what his numbers indicated.
Finally scoring a touchdown late in the fourth quarter was the work house Benjamin, scoring on his second pass catch for a touchdown in the first two games.
The Sun Devils finished with a 19-7 victory even after the ineptitude of their offense, and that due to a bad performance by the offensive line.
The defense was the rock in both contest this season, but the level of talent that they have played and held to a total of 14 points combined will get stiffer in the next few games. We will see if the Devils can bring the defensive performance on the road to Michigan State next week, if they don’t and their offense gives them another performance like they did Friday night it will be a long day in East Lansing.