There is always that chance. The opportunity for a team to stumble after winning a gigantic game on the schedule. It has happened before to other teams and the recipe is correct for it to happen to Arizona State this week against Oregon State in Corvallis, where the team hasn't won since 2005.
While the fan base has the right to be legitimately concerned, head coach Todd Graham isn't.
"When you're dealing with 18 to 22 year-old young men, you reap what you sow," Graham said Tuesday after practice. "I think we've sown really strong relationships with them. I think they understand-they're very humble."
Humility and a work ethic will be key to taking down the Beavers. OSU is an inferior team this season, that's not in question. But the Sun Devils still have to go into the game thinking that the team opposite them on the line of scrimmage could beat them on any given night.
"They also respect the opponents they're playing," Graham said. " It doesn't matter what you did the last time you went there, it doesn't matter who they had 20 years ago, none of that stuff matters."
These kinds of games have been littered all over the Pac-12 this season. Utah barely pulled a win out over OSU and also upset UCLA. Utah lost to Washington State at home while Arizona went into Eugene and beat Oregon. There is no reason to think that Arizona State isn't immune from these types of losses. Graham added that the team knows with success also comes a target on their backs.
"They know they've got to win the next game in front of them," Graham said. "They also know because you win and become successful, you get everybody's best game because people are looking to knock you off."
• Ezekiel Bishop remains in a green no contact jersey
• Laiu Moeakiola and Jordan Simone were in gold "limited contact" jerseys
• Demario Richard, D.J. Foster and Deantre Lewis all got first team reps at running back