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ASU Football: The Good, the Bad, and the Ugly

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It was ugly for Arizona

NCAA Football: Arizona State at Arizona Mark J. Rebilas-USA TODAY Sports

In a year of uncertainty, it’s nice to experience a shred of normalcy in between the adverse situations that have been presented in 2020.

Since Herm Edwards took over the reigns of Sun Devil football in 2018, he hasn’t lost to Kevin Sumlin and his Wildcats, and with every win the margin of victory becomes bigger and bigger for Edwards and his program.

With a lost season due to the coronavirus pandemic, Edwards and the Sun Devils can leave this enigma of a season in the rearview mirror and still walk away with the territorial cup.

The Good

Rachaad White

A week after white fumbled twice, and turned in an overall lackluster performance, the shifty running back found the end zone three times and rushed for 133 yards on ten carries. Paul Rhoads had no answer for White, and for that matter the entire Sun Devil backfield. When Zak Hill gets White the ball in space, it opens up the offense and keeps opposing defenses honest.

Daniyel Ngata and Chip Trayanum both turned in solid nights, both running for 41 hard yards and a touchdown. Neither could outshine White, who has been the best offensive player for the Sun Devils in 2020, should be the focal point of the offense going forward. A backfield of White, Trayanum, and Ngata can be dangerous. If Hill can commit to running the ball, ASU can dominate teams in old school fashion.

D.J. Taylor

One return. 100 yards. One touchdown. Taylor broke whatever spirit the Wildcats had from the opening kick off.

Need I say more?

Defense

If you face three different quarterbacks in the same game, odds are you played pretty well. Antonio Pierce’s unit allowed 113 rushing yards, and 185 passing yards. From the get go, the defense made life miserable for Grant Gunnell, Will Plummer, and Rhett Rodriguez, picking off three passes and recovering four fumbles.

While the offense played their most complete game of the year, the defense gave Jayden Daniels great field position all night and made life easy for Hill.

Jackson He

He scored the touchdown that gave the Sun Devils the record for the most points scored in a territorial cup game. Not only did He’s score set the record, but it was also the first touchdown by a Chinese born player in FBS history.

The Sun Devils not only set records yesterday, but He broke down a few barriers as well.

The Bad

The Arizona Wildcats

The Ugly

Kevin Sumlin’s coaching tenure at Arizona.

The Wildcats looked uninspired, defeated, and dead from the opening kickoff.

If a team dominates a rivalry so much, it isn’t a rivalry anymore, it’s just a game. That’s what Herm Edwarda has turned this rivalry into, just another game on the schedule.