Updated Sep 26, 2013 - 9:16 am
Arizona State focused on stopping USC on the ground
Wisconsin and Stanford have combined to gash ASU for 471 yards on the ground in ASU's last two games. While USC doesn't have quite the same rushing attack as those two teams, they are led by sophomore Tre Madden, who's already totaled 455 yards and a pair of scores.
The Arizona State defensive line has made it clear this week that their number one focus is on USC's ground game and forcing the Trojans to turn to the air.
"Once we stop the run and get their quarterback to really start throwing the ball we can get them playing for us," senior defensive tackle Will Sutton said.
Sophomore Cody Kessler is currently USC's starting quarterback, but only after edging out sophomore Max Wittek for the job following a lackluster competition between the two. On the season, USC has thrown for four touchdowns with three interceptions. Star wideout Marqise Lee only has 293 receiving yards through four games after totaling 1,721 yards and 14 touchdowns in 2012.
The Trojans currently rank seventh in the Pac-12 in rushing offense (176.5 yards per game) and ninth in the conference in passing offense (163.5 yards per game.)
"Their weak point is their quarterback," Sutton said. "The receivers are kind of frustrated because they can't get the ball and make plays really."
While they are focused on the run, Arizona State does need to keep its eye on Lee, who torched the Devils for 227 total yards and one TD in USC's 38-17 win in Los Angeles last year.
- ASU AD Ray Anderson: 'The love and the passion for Pat Tillman is palpable'
- Pat Tillman's death remembered 10 years later
- ASU quarterback Taylor Kelly caps spring with successful scrimmage performance
- Todd Graham pleased ahead of ASU spring football game
- ASU's Mo Latu losing weight and gaining confidence
- Ray Anderson, ASU Athletic Director - Tuesday April 22Ray Anderson discusses Pat Tillman's legacy at ASU.
- Ray Anderson, Arizona State athletic director - Thursday April 17Ray Anderson talks about the new athletic fee and what it means for students. Also, what does it mea
- Gary Lane, ASU rugby coach - Friday April 11ASU rugby coach Gary Lane talks about his team's upcoming game against BYU.
- Chris Karpman, ASU Devils.com - Wednesday April 9ASU Devils.com Chris Karpman discusses the new student athletic fee.
- Ray Anderson, Arizona State athletic director - Wednesday April 9Arizona State athletic director Ray Anderson discusses the new student athletic fee.