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ASU Football: Five things we noticed from Pac-12 Media Day

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Things are mostly the same

NCAA Football: Pac-12 Media Day Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports

Pac-12 Media Day took place in Hollywood on Wednesday and we wanted to note a few items from head coach Herm Edwards, running back Eno Benjamin and center Cohl Cabral.

Even with his new role as a professor, Herm is still Herm

Earlier in the offseason, it was announced Edwards would join the faculty of ASU’s Walter Cronkite School of Journalism and Mass Communications. Although, as Media Day proved, Herm is still Coach Herm. Keeping it simple and wise.

Here’s his wisdom on life:

“I just have an attitude every day that can be your best friend or your worst enemy And the great part about it, you get to choose that. It’s a choice. And I think sometimes we get sidetracked because we start listening to outside people, and all of a sudden that becomes the attitude we’re going to take that day. I just try to end every day on a positive note. I’ve had some struggles in my life like anyone else. I’m not perfect by any stretch of the imagination. But when I lay my head to rest, I always ask myself this question: Did I do something or say something to help somebody? And if I’ve done that, I’ve done my day’s work. That’s important to me.”

ASU seems to earn respect after last season

In Edwards’ first year, the media picked ASU to finish last in the South of the Pac-12. After nearly winning the division a year ago, ASU was picked to finish third in the South this season behind Utah and USC. That’s somewhat of a statement with ASU not knowing its starting quarterback and losing its most talented player, N’Keal Harry from last season. Although, Edwards doesn’t think much of the higher selection in the polls.

“That’s always difficult for people to make polls,” Edwards said. “I don’t get into polls, I just get into coaching the football team. I don’t worry about all that stuff. I worry about what people said, I wouldn’t leave my house. So I don’t get into all that. I coach the football team and coach the players. I’ve got a great staff, and I think going into year two, we’ve established some things that makes it a lot easier for me to coach. The fact that players know what to anticipate, coaches know what to anticipate. Your first year, players don’t know who you are and the coaches really don’t know who you are. So I think it takes some time to earn their trust. That’s what I asked them to do for me, let me earn your trust, and I think I’ve done that, and now we can continue to build a program.”

The Pac-12 seems pretty open

In those polls, Utah, the reigning South Champion, was the favorite for the entire conference. They received 33 of the 35 first-place votes with USC getting the other two. In the North, Washington wasn’t seen as the favorite, instead it was Justin Herbert and the Oregon Ducks. However, there doesn’t seem to be a clear cut favorite and the conference seems to be anyone’s for the taking.

People know Eno Benjamin is really good

Benjamin, who has had a plethora of preseason accolades, was ASU’s lone first-team Pac-12 representative. There are plenty of good running backs in the Pac-12, but the opinion showed that people believed Benjamin to be the best of the group, and for good reason. Benjamin seems to be the only person trying not to make a big deal of his stardom.

“I try not to (hear that stuff). I feel like that type of stuff consumes you and then you begin to focus and only think about stuff like that,” Benjamin said. “I’m the type of guy who just likes to keep my head down and start working. Whatever God has in store for me, it’s already there. So I’m just going to play football and once you play football, those things will happen so just take care of that part and good things will follow.”

Year two is just trying to build on year one

Fans may complain that ASU’s 2020 recruiting class doesn’t have all the star power they want, but ASU seems to stick with their plan. The Sun Devils have focused on reloading the offensive line and getting guys that fit the mold they want. The biggest thing about the leap to year two for Edwards is to him there’s less time spent into who they want to do what. Such as in terms of leadership as he commented on in LA:

“It’s been good. Last year we had more players involved,” he said. “This year it’s only six. They’re chosen for a reason. They have a voice on that team, in that locker room, and they have a platform that they can directly come to me, things that concern them or things that they feel would be in the best interest of the football team. I’m like any player or anybody else; everything I’ve learned I’ve actually learned from somebody else. So the more I can gain knowledge, the more efficient I’ll be and the better coach I’ll become. But the players especially.”