Season Preview: Arizona State Sun Devils Football

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Sep 25, 2014; Tempe, AZ, USA; General view as UCLA Bruins prepares to snap the ball against the Arizona State Sun Devils at Sun Devil Stadium. UCLA defeated Arizona State 62-27. Mandatory Credit: Mark J. Rebilas-USA TODAY Sports

HW: Which home games are the toughest on the schedule for Arizona State? Which road games should Arizona State fans be worried about most? Why?

CS: The toughest home game has to be USC early on. We don’t know how Vernon Adams will square off with the Ducks but both will be very interesting. The hardest road game besides the Texas A&M has to be Cal. I really think the Golden Bears will be strong this year especially offensively with Jared Goff. Dude has a cannon.

KA: The toughest home games for the Sun Devils this season will definitely be against PAC-12 teams. This year USC, Oregon and Arizona will each make their way to Sun Devil Stadium.

All three of those teams will start the season ranked in the Top 25 (Oregon, No. 7; USC No. 8; Arizona No.22). These games will define the Sun Devils’ season as they will be no easy match by any means.

No. 7 USC returns to Tempe on September 26. Last year, USC had it in the bag until Bercovici nailed a game-winning Hail Mary pass to defeat SC. This season, the Trojans will be back with vengeance.

Then there’s Oregon, the defending PAC-12 Champions. Oregon destroyed Arizona in the Championship game right after ASU lost to the Wildcats in Tucson. It would be a shock if ASU pulled out a victory against this team.

The Wilcats, meanwhile, are looking to keep their bragging rights as winners of the Territorial Cup Game. It’s always exciting when this match up takes place at Sun Devil Stadium.

Head Coach Rich Rodriguez has made the Wildcats a competitive team in thelast few seasons, so now it’s always a great matchup of two very talented football teams battling over their state.

On the road, ASU should be aware of UCLA and Utah. These PAC-12 foes, again, will decide which direction the Sun Devil season goes.

JM: The Sun Devils actually have a fairly tough home schedule once PAC-12 Conference play begins. They welcome USC, Oregon, and their in-state rivals University of Arizona. If I were to choose the toughest matchup I might have to go with USC.

Hear me out.

Oregon will be great again but I’m curious as to how they recover from losing Marcus Mariota. USC already has their quarterback in place and he’s a darn good one too. Cody Kessler doesn’t make many mistakes and is a seasoned leader.

If I were to have to choose the toughest road game I would undoubtedly say their first game against Texas A&M is their toughest matchup.

A close second would be UCLA but once again I look at their quarterback situation. They lost Brett Hundley and that’s a huge blow considering all he did for them. Behind a subpar offensive line he was able to keep the Bruins in contention. None of the quarterbacks the Bruins currently have are as savvy as Hundley.

Texas A&M will be coming into the game hyped behind second year starter Kyle Allen. They have speed and the Sun Devils will be in for a shootout.

MH: The Sun Devils have a tough schedule; they host USC, Oregon, and Arizona, while traveling to play Texas A&M, and UCLA. The games I as afan would worry the most about would be the games against Texas A&M and Oregon.

Texas A&M is a pretty good team, they were a team that was on the verge of a National Championship under Johnny Manziel only two yearsago. The Sun Devils are playing on a “neutral” field, which happens to be still within Texas. The Aggies are unranked to start the season, but I would not overlook this game because A&M is still a team that can surprise you. Another thing is the fact that it is ASU’s first game and they have not faced each other, so the outcome is hard to predict.

Oregon is very good; their fast paced offense is very skilled and hard tokeep up with. The Sun Devils will need to stop them early and often in order to get the edge. This will probably be the best game of the season, as two very good offensive units will square off. Since this is a PAC-12 game it may have huge implications on the line.Every game will be a battle for ASU, but it will be rewarding if they can get through it with some wins.

JF: The tough home games are against USC, Oregon, Washington and Arizona. The struggles on the road will be at Texas A&M to open the season, UCLA, and Utah. ASU’s toughest stretch during the season is five games starting September 26th and finishing October 29th, when the Sun Devils play USC and UCLA in back to back weeks and then move on to back to back potential trap games against Colorado and Utah followed by hosting the Ducks to finish out October.

EB: The toughest home game for ASU in my opinion is against USC on Saturday, September 26th. Even though USC is almost always in turmoil, they keep on getting top recruits. They have the opportunity to be scary good and pose a threat to the Sun Devils in the PAC-12 south. The toughest road game for ASU has to be against Utah on October 17th. Utah is going to be a very good team this year and I really feel like they are going to be a scary team at the end of the season.

Next: PAC-12 South Chances