Not even No. 22 ASU (9-3, 0-1 Pac-12) could have predicted the outcome of last Sunday; an upset loss to rival Arizona (11-1, 1-0) 51-39 in Tucson.
Already off on the wrong foot in conference play, the Devils will have to rebound starting Friday in Utah against the undefeated Utes (12-0, 1-0), and then head to Boulder on Sunday to face the Buffaloes (10-2, 0-1).
While neither of the two opponents are seen as a threat at the national level, Arizona wasn’t necessarily a threat either given the two teams’ history, but anything can happen. So what is ASU getting themselves into?
Like U of A, Utah faced a simple slate of non-conference opponents with the most notable being Alabama and Florida. Utah defeated Colorado in its first game of the conference schedule 76-61 last Sunday.
Utah is led by senior Megan Huff, who has averaged 19.8 points per game. She’d equate to Kianna Ibis on ASU as a high-scoring forward. Senior Daneesha Provo and freshman Dre’Una Edwards are the other double-digit scorers with 13.5 and 12.5.
Utah is the only team in the Pac-12 that is undefeated and is one of just seven teams remaining in NCAA Division I women’s basketball that hasn’t lost a game. Will the Devils hand the Utes their first loss of the season?
The game will tip-off at 7 p.m. in Salt Lake City. It can be viewed on the Pac-12 Network or heard on NBC Sports Radio AM 1060.
Colorado’s most notable opponent to date has been the formerly ranked Miami, in a game they lost 73-58. The common opponent between CU and ASU is Colorado State; both of whom defeated the Rams.
The leading scorers for the Buffs are senior Kennedy Leonard with 13.8 points and sophomore Mya Hollingshed with 11.8. Leonard will likely matchup with Reili Richardson at the point. Leonard is also CU’s all-time assist leader (615).
This will be the conclusion of a 7-game homestand for the Buffs as ASU will look to be coming off of success against Utah.
In its lowest-scoring performance of the season, ASU looks to return to form as a team that is averaging 68.9 points per game. It not only will help their confidence, but their presence in a talented conference.