This is a rather peculiar year for the PAC-12 and if the Sun Devils take advantage of it they have the opportunity to take the mantle of the PAC-12 South. ASU is in Prime position to make a push for the PAC-12 championship game. With Jayden Daniels at the helm of the program having the ability to pass or run for prolific yards, this team is potentially limitless. Normally when I see University of Washington on the schedule I’m scared that week, but they have their own issues this year, Stanford lost to Kansas State and face two ranked opponents including the Ducks before ASU so no worries on my end there. The Utah Utes, known for their defense and lack of offense, gave up 26 to Brigham Young and lost. Clay Helton the head coach of University of Southern California got fired as I’m writing this article and that’s not a joke. I’m not worried about Washington State University with their new coach or Oregon State University. Of course rivalry games can ruin a lot with the University of Arizona at the end of the schedule but that can be dealt with later. The PAC-12 is in shambles and ASU has a perfect path to the championship game against potentially the Ducks. This is a future look at the schedule and why ASU has potential to be the South Champs.
- This week #19 Arizona State University vs. #23 Brigham Young University- The cougars are coming off an incredible high where they beat their rivals the Utah Utes. This is a marquee win for them, the Utes have a great suffocating defense where they use offensive efficiency and the lack of offense from Utah to push the ball short distances. Arizona State will have to make sure they don’t give the ball up on short yardage situations. BYU tends to win close low scoring games but with the Sun Devils being a more well balanced team then Utah and University of Arizona this game will look closer in paper then in real life
- Next week ASU VS. Colorado week- There are two games I’m worried about and this is one of them. Despite Colorado being unranked they are like the Appalachian State of PAC-12, you could always argue they could be ranked and they play tough football. Last week Colorado lost to ranked 7 Texas A&M 10-7. Normally Colorado is associated with high scoring games and a phenomenal QB Sam Noyer. This year they have a new QB named Brendon Lewis that they have not unleashed yet, but if Colorado now has a defense that can keep the Aggies to ten points and a young QB that can score points then this game could be a rough, tough it out, mindset kind of game that ASU mentally needs to prepare for and this is an upset alert game if there not ready.
- Week 5 Arizona State University vs. UCLA- So far, early this season, it appears Chip Kelly may have finally turned his program around. After beating Louisiana State University and proving themselves they are ranked 13 and this will be the highest ranked team the Sun Devils face. This is also a year for Chip Kelly where he has to ask himself, “If not now, then when?” He has a highly efficient offense that is also explosive and a defense that can cause turnovers and play complimentary football. Chip Kelly is also playing in the same PAC-12 turmoil that ASU is playing in and this will be the game for the crown of the PAC-12 South, and will be for the championship game against the Ducks. This is the most worrisome game for me. ASU will face a hard hitting Colorado team the week before then driving to Rose Bowl Stadium the next week. Either team can win and the Sun Devils need to if they want to take advantage of Jayden Daniels before he leaves and their key defensive players.
With Arizona State not winning the PAC-12 championship since 1996 I have to ask Herm Edwards and the everyday fan. If not now… when?