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Sun Devils begin game-planning for New Mexico State

Arizona State head coach Todd Graham speaks at the Pac-12 NCAA college football media day, Thursday, July 27, 2017, in the Hollywood section of Los Angeles. (AP Photo/Mark J. Terrill)

TEMPE, Ariz. — The offseason and training camp grind came to an end for the Arizona State football team on Tuesday. The Sun Devils began game-planning for their first opponent, New Mexico State, which comes to Sun Devil Stadium on Aug. 31.

That was a welcome relief for the players.

“Time to amp it up,” quarterback Manny Wilkins said. “We work for this first Thursday coming out. This is what we’ve been working this whole offseason for, whether it was winter, spring, fall camp, summer… this is the time where it starts to count.”

Coach Todd Graham said the scout teams were in effect on Tuesday and the Devils “got a lot of work done; thought it was a positive.”

While Graham showered the Aggies’ skill positions with praise, New Mexico State hasn’t won more than four games in a season in the last 12 years.

This is an unofficial preseason game to work out the kinks before the Devils face more serious opponents, starting nine days later with San Diego State, which went 11-3 last year, defeated the Pac-12’s Cal Bears in September and defeated Houston in the Las Vegas Bowl to finish ranked among the AP top 25.

“It’s just about getting guys dialed in,” Wilkins said. “I think guys know the importance of honing in on everything, watching film, studying a lot of formations, how they pressure, what they do, how they do it, personnel, all those little things.

“We’ve just got to go out there every single day, take it game by game and go 1-0 every week.”

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