It's that time of year again. A tradition unlike any other is back for another year, bringing back the 12 best plays from the regular season in the form of the House of Sparky 12 plays of Christmas series. For the next 12 days, we'll recount one play each day from the 2014 season.
We began the 12 plays of Christmas two years ago, and we're bringing it back with even more holiday cheer. We've slightly modified our points system from last season, as we try to ensure as little subjectivity in the process as possible. Here is how our 2014 point system looked:
1 Point: The play occurred in a Sun Devil loss
2 Points: The play changed the momentum of a game
3 Points: The play occurred in a Sun Devil victory
4 Points: The play led to a Sun Devil touchdown
5 Points: The play was a Sun Devil touchdown
6 Points: The play was a Sun Devil touchdown scored by the defense
7 Points: The play went for 40 or more yards (Big Play Factor)
8 Points: The play occurred in the 4th quarter of a Sun Devil victory
9 Points: The play was a touchdown in the 4th quarter of a Sun Devil victory
10 Points: The play occurred in overtime
11 points: The play itself actually won ASU the game
Let's not wait any longer, here is the first selection in the 12 plays of Christmas:
Play No. 12: D.J. Foster 57-yard touchdown run vs. Weber State
3 points: The play occurred in a Sun Devil victory
5 points: The play was a Sun Devil touchdown
7 points: The play went for 40 yards or more
Total: 15 points
Arizona State was in full control against Weber State in the third quarter, leading 31-0 early in the third quarter. Taylor Kelly had been pulled and Mike Bercovici was in at quarterback for the Sun Devils first play of the second half.
After an incomplete pass to Cameron Smith on first down, Foster got the ball on a stretch play run to the right side. Christian Westerman pulled from the left guard spot and threw a key block. Foster then spun, making three Wildcats collide and beat the rest of the defense with his speed.
It was Foster's longest touchdown of the season to date and was his third rushing touchdown of the night, in which he finished with 147 yards on 15 carries. It was an important run for his confidence too, as he headed to New Mexico the next week and went for 216 yards on the ground with another touchdown.
The run also truly put the game out of reach for the Wildcats, putting the Sun Devils up 38-0 with 10:46 left in the third quarter. Hindsight is of course 20/20, but its interesting to note that little did Foster and Bercovici know, they would be working with each other a lot more this season than either originally planned.
ASU would score just one more touchdown, but that's all they would need to go on and beat Weber State 45-14. Todd Graham went on to say in practice the following week that he was, "raising nine kinds of cane" when Foster was still in the game in the third quarter, but I'm sure the Scottsdale Saguaro graduate was happy he could break a long touchdown run early in the season.
See video of the play below: