Playing without starting quarterback Cole Gautsche, running back Carlos Wiggins and kick returner Dameon Gambin Saturday, the New Mexico Lobos looked every bit the part of the overmatched host against the visiting Arizona State Sun Devils.
Backed by D.J. Foster’s career day, four first half rushing touchdowns from Deantre Lewis, Kalen Ballage and Taylor Kelly, and two more passing touchdowns from Kelly after halftime, Todd Graham’s squad took care of business at University Stadium by a final of 58-23.
With the win, the Sun Devils improved to 2-0 on the season and 23-5-1 all-time against the Lobos.
Here’s a look back at ASU’s 35-point victory by the numbers:
Held to just one catch in the first half, junior wideout Jaelen Strong got into the pass-catching act early in the third quarter, hauling in a 24-yard touchdown pass from Kelly.
For Strong, the touchdown reception was the eighth of his career.
Ballage, a true freshman out of Falcon High School in central Colorado, put together a two-touchdown performance — the Sun Devils second in as many games to begin the 2014 season.
Foster had three touchdowns in ASU’s 45-14 victory over Weber State on Aug. 28.
All eight of ASU’s touchdowns in the win were scored on drives that lasted less than three minutes. Three of the eight concluded inside of one minute.
Zane Gonzalez was the recipient of a pass on a two-point attempt in the first half, but the Sun Devils place kicker could use a little work when it comes to point-after attempts.
Gonzalez had two PATs blocked and also missed a field goal from 44 yards out — for a total of five points left off the board.
A poor exchange between Kelly and running back Demario Richard midway through the second quarter led to the Sun Devils’ first turnover of the evening.
For the Lobos, the fumble recovery was their first turnover forced since Oct. 5, 2013 — a span of nine games.
Lewis’ touchdown was his first since a 62-41 win over USC back on Sept. 28, 2013 — a span of 10 games.
Foster caught three balls for 54 yards on the evening.
The former Saguaro standout has a reception in each of his 29 career games.
Under the direction of Graham and Mike Norvell, ASU has scored more than 50 points on 10 different occasions.
Lewis’ one-yard score in the opening quarter was set up by a 52-yard run by Kelly four plays earlier. The scamper was the longest of his collegiate career.
Saturday marked the Sun Devils’ 104th program victory against schools that comprise the Mountain West Conference. ASU last loss to a MWC school (Boise State) back in 2011.
While Foster continued to do damage with his hands, the tailback made his biggest impact Saturday with his legs.
The ASU tailback ran for a career-high 216 yards and a touchdown.
Foster is the first Sun Devil to rush for over 200 yards since Delvon Flowers (2001).
The meeting between ASU and New Mexico was the first between the two programs since 1977.