Despite finishing last season with a 62-28 blowout win over Navy in the Kraft Fight Hunger Bowl, Arizona State University football goes into the season unranked in USA Today’s preseason coaches’ poll.
However, ESPN analyst Travis Haney, in an Insider piece, listed the Sun Devils as one of the underrated programs to look out for in 2013.
Not ranking Arizona State might have been a bigger mistake than not ranking Miami. The coaches must have missed the end of Todd Graham’s first year in which the Sun Devils blistered Washington State, upset rival Arizona on the road and put up 62 points on Navy in the Kraft Fight Hunger Bowl.
Haney also praises ASU’s defensive front — anchored by Will Sutton, Marcus Hardison and Carl Bradford — saying those three “make up quite possibly the top D-line in the Pac-12.”
Haney says coaches shouldn’t be surprised if the program makes its way into national rankings during the year.
The difficulty of the schedule could keep the Sun Devils shuffling up and down the polls, but there are also big non-conference opportunities such as Wisconsin and Notre Dame. A lot of coaches I’ve talked to said they wouldn’t blink if Arizona State represented the South in the Pac-12 title game.