It is always nice to write position grades after a 54-13 victory, as the Sun Devils dominated the Colorado Buffaloes in every facet Saturday night. The Sun Devils outgained the Buffaloes 532-268 and the Arizona State defense forced four turnovers.
Here is how we graded the Arizona State football team in their 41-point victory over the Buffaloes.
Despite only completing nine passes, Taylor Kelly threw for 223 yards and two touchdowns in just a half of play. The junior signal caller was relieved by Mike Bercovici in the second half, who went 2/3 for 23 yards.
In total, Arizona State quarterbacks combined for 256 passing yards and 75 rushing yards against Colorado. Neither quarterback threw an interception, and under Kelly in the first half, the Sun Devils scored on eight of nine drives.
Running Backs: A
In the first half, Marion Grice looked like the running back we saw at the end of last season. Grice carried 13 times for 88 yards and two touchdowns. Most importantly, Grice averaged 6.8 yards per carry last night, the highest average of the season for the senior.
Arizona State completed just 11 passes on the night so the receivers did not have much of an opportunity to shine. Jaelen Strong once again had over 100 yards receiving and a touchdown, this time on just three catches. The only other player to catch more than one pass against Colorado was Grice.
Offensive Line: A
The Sun Devils only gave up one sack against Colorado and Arizona State averaged 4.8 yards per carry. Taylor Kelly was rarely in any danger and the running game had plenty of holes to run though.
Defensive Line: B+
The entire Sun Devil defense held Colorado in check all night. The Buffaloes had just 94 yards of offense in the first half. Davon Coleman had perhaps his best game of the season, racking up 2.5 tackles for loss and half a sack. The rest of the defensive line was relatively quiet, Jaxon Hood had two tackles and Will Sutton had two assisted tackles.
Carl Bradford and Chris Young were both dominant last night. Bradford had four tackles, 2.5 tackles for loss and 1.5 sacks. Young finished with seven tackles, two tackles for loss and a sack. Salamo Fiso finished tied with Young for the team in tackles with seven.
The Sun Devils held Colorado's star wide receiver Paul Richardson without a catch in the first half. He finished with a season low in both catches and yards. Arizona State picked off three passes and held Colorado to 169 passing yards.
Special Teams: A
Zane Gonzales went 3-3 in field goal attempts last night and the freshman kicker has hit six consecutive field goal attempts. The Sun Devils punted just twice last night, averaging 36.5 yards per kick.