This year was a disappointment on every single level. From the sky high expectations of greatness to the bottom-feeding attitude we succumbed to in the last stretch of the season, 2008 was the first year in a long time that fans were truly disenfranchised.
Sure, we've seen bad teams at ASU, but never with such certainly of greatness has such ill befallen us. Our final record was 5-7... we didn't even get into a bowl game! Had you told me this after we drubbed Stanford in September, I would have laughed heartily. Tucson is laughing now.
Nonetheless, we have a commitment to sustain the football program into perpetuity, rather than focus forever on the lost 2008 campaign. It is now time to look ahead at the schedule, and meter our expectations accordingly.
Sept. 5 - IDAHO STATE
Sept. 12 - BRIGHAM YOUNG
Sept. 26 - at Georgia
Oct. 3 - OREGON STATE
Oct. 10 - at Washington State
Oct. 17 - WASHINGTON
Oct. 24 - at Stanford
Oct. 31 - CAL
Nov. 7 - USC
Nov. 14 - at Oregon
Nov. 21 - at UCLA
Nov. 28 - ARIZONA
First thing I notice is that we have moved the season a week forward and end a week sooner, thus losing two possible bye weeks. We usually play our first game at the end of August, and the Territorial Cup has lately been earned in December. As it stands, we play 10 consecutive weeks. That is insane.
Our only bye week comes two weeks into the season, and this can be indicative of the tightening of athletic monetary belts by cutting the season short and saving money. Playing 10 weeks in a row, our team WILL crap out. This is a certainty, like taxes.
Idaho State is a winnable game at home. We will have a new quarterback under center, and hopefully a new offensive mentality. ASU wins.
The next week, Brigham Young comes to town. Max Hall, former ASU player and current BYU stalwart, will come looking for blood, and I imagine he will get it. ASU will not win this game. Record: 1-1.
We then have to go to Georgia... brutal. Record: 1-2.
What a stupid season for a strong OOC schedule.
Oregon State will be great next year, but we have a chance if we can gel as a team. I say no, though. Record: 1-3.
We go into Pullman, and come out with the win. Record: 2-3.
We play Washington at home, and Locker runs his way to victory. Record: 2-4.
Stanford in Palo Alto might be a tough game to win, but I will give it to the boys. Record: 3-4.
Cal is going to be good next year. Record: 3-5
USC is obviously going to kick our ass. Record: 3-6.
Oregon in Autzen is a nightmare. Record: 3-7.
UCLA will be retooled and better than this season. Record: 3-8.
Arizona will be a tossup game. Give it to the Devils! Record: 4-8.
Wow. I hope I am wrong, but this upcoming season could be absolutely horrendous. Hopefully some new skill players emerge in Carpenter and Herring's absence, or else it will be a long, hot fall in the desert.