With the dark cloud of Todd Graham’s potential firing hanging over the team, Arizona State went into its biggest game of the season against bitter rival, Arizona. Down by ten at halftime, the Sun Devils needed a spark coming out of the break and they got one from an unlikely source.
The Wildcats lined up to punt the ball away from their own 29-yard line after their first possession of the half, but ASU’s Curtis Hodges had other ideas.
The freshmen wide receiver and special teams player burst through a gap in Arizona’s offensive line and blocked the punt, knocking the ball out of bounds at the five-yard line.
(The play begins at 1:11)
Two plays later senior tailback Demario Richard ran in the ball for a touchdown that pulled ASU within three. That ended up being the start of a 28-7 run for the Sun Devils that sealed their 42-30 victory.
Hodges was part of another blocked punt later in the game, but he fumbled the recovery, giving Arizona the ball back. Despite that mistake, his play on special teams throughout the game proved crucial to ASU’s win.