The start of the game was a bit puzzling for those expecting an Arizona State blowout. The Sun Devils punted the ball away on their first drive, then after a quick three-and-out got the ball back in their zone. But it wasn't Taylor Kelly or D.J. Foster or Jaelen Strong who opened the scoring, but kicker Zane Gonzalez, who booted a 33-yarder to put the team on the board with 8:27 to play in the first quarter.
Then the offense clicked. On the third drive (after another defensive three-and-out), Kelly and Foster found each other, and found each other often. The drive was seven plays for 55 yards, and ended in an 8-yard touchdown to pass to redshirt junior wide receiver Gary Chambers. It was Chambers' first career touchdown on his first career catch, and it put his team up 10-0.
The next drive saw a staple from last year's scheme: the back-shoulder fade to Strong for 26 yards. The drive ended with Foster punching in a 1-yard run for the second touchdown in as many drives.
To sum up the first quarter: It was the Foster and Strong show. The running back and wide receiver combined for 160 yards. Everyone else combined for 11.
It was on the next defensive sequence- the fourth drive of the game for Weber State that it recorded a first down for the first time. The Wildcats drove down the field and ended the first quarter in a 2nd-and-goal situation on the Arizona State 2-yard line.
End of the first quarter: ASU 17, Weber State 0
Any hope Weber State had disappeared with a 4th-and-inches stop at the goal line by the Sun Devil defense. The next play: a 35-yard pass from Kelly to Strong. The next: a 19-yard run by Foster. A few plays later, Foster put the Sun Devils back in the endzone and it was 24-0 with 11:35 left in the half. All in all, it was a nine-play, 99-yard scoring drive.
And that was the ballgame.
Weber State showed some life on the ensuing drive, but it ended in a punt. Arizona State took the ball, and moved down the field for another score. Foster, Strong and Chambers all got in on the action, and it was freshman running back Kalen Ballage punched it in for his first career touchdown to go up 31-0.
Strong ended the first half with 10 catches for 146 yards. Foster had 84 yards on the ground, 26 in the air and two touchdowns. In the half, Taylor Kelly also passed Danny White and Ryan Kealy to go into fourth on the all-time passing list at Arizona State, with 6,943 yards
End of the second quarter: ASU 31, Weber State 0