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ASU moment of the Year semifinals: No. 1 football wins Pac-12 South vs. No. 4 football crushes Arizona

Two great moments for Sun Devil football fans, but which was the best moment on the gridiron?

Harry How

Saturday, hockey's national championship advanced to the Moment of the Year finals with a convincing win over basketball's upset win against Arizona.


Only one spot left to be determined, and it is a showdown between two great Arizona State football victories.

Seed No. 1: Football wins the Pac-12 South

Throughout the 21st century, Arizona State football has gained a reputation of not being able to take that next step into elite status. Didn't Arizona State have all the makings of a football powerhouse? Large school, great location, good recruiting territories, improving facilities, what was missing?

When Todd Graham was hired in December of 2012, he immediately began talking championships. In his second season, he delivered a Pac-12 South championship when the Sun Devils went on the road and defeated the UCLA Bruins.

It was a game contested on Nov. 23, 2013 between the two preseason favorites in the South. It was a high scoring affair from the start, with the teams combining for 24 points after the first quarter.

In the second, the Sun Devils began to distance themselves from the Bruins thanks to a Carl Bradford pick-six and a Jaelen Strong touchdown reception with five seconds left in the half. Arizona State led 35-13 at halftime.

However, UCLA crept back in the game in the third quarter, outscoring the Sun Devils 14-3 in the third frame to pull within 11 with 15 minutes to play. With just over 11 minutes left in the game, Brett Hundley found Shaquelle Evans on a 27-yard touchdown pass to pull UCLA within five (two-point conversion failed).

In the final minutes of the game, the key plays went the Sun Devils way and thanks to a missed field goal by the Bruins and a crucial sack by Chris Young in the redzone, the Sun Devils came out on top by a score of 38-33. The Sun Devils had won the Pac-12 South and would be playing for a trip to the Rose Bowl.

Seed No. 4: Football beats down Arizona

Is there anything that gives more joy to Arizona State fans than beating the University of Arizona? It's special for the Tempe faithful when the Sun Devils come out on top in any sport, but football is something else.

On Nov. 30, not only did the Sun Devils beat the Wildcats, they demolished them.

When the final whistle blew, the scoreboard read 58-21 in Arizona State's favor, with most of the Arizona fans long gone on the long drive down the I-10. The game was never particularly close, as the Sun Devils took a 30-7 lead into halftime. The Wildcats scored coming out of the half, bringing them within two possessions.

Arizona stopped the Sun Devil offense on the next drive, and looked poised to make it game once again. Then junior Damarious Randall happened, intercepting Arizona quarterback B.J. Denker and taking it 64 yards to the house and essentially ending the game. The next quarter and a half of play was just fans in maroon and gold giggling gleefully while their football team embarrassed their arch-rival.

It was the second straight year Arizona State took home the Territorial Cup, keeping coach Todd Graham undefeated against Arizona in his Sun Devil career.

As an added bonus, the mugging of the Wildcats also gave Arizona State the best conference record, allowing it to host the Pac-12 title game.

Football winning the Pac-12 South (69 percent) beats the Territorial Cup win (31 percent).