ASU’s Wilkins, Aiyuk connect for touchdown to take first quarter lead
Arizona State struggled to get going against San Diego State in the first quarter, but quarterback Manny Wilkins began connecting with receivers who had room to run in their final drive.
With 41 seconds remaining in the quarter, he completed a pass to wide receiver Brandon Aiyuk, who took it 12 yards to score a touchdown and take a 7-0 lead.
Despite the touchdown, the two hadn’t connected throughout the drive. Aiyuk got behind his defender, but Wilkins couldn’t get the deep pass into the proper spot and Aiyuk couldn’t grab it.
That put ASU at third-and-10 near midfield.
But Wilkins spread the ball and used different playmakers at his disposal.
He got a first down on an 18-yard pass to running back Eno Benjamin, and later connected with receiver Kyle Williams for a 12-yard gain.
Williams, who led the team against Michigan State with seven receptions and 104 yards, had three receptions for 26 yards in the first quarter Saturday, both of which led all ASU players.
At the 12-yard line, Wilkins hit Aiyuk on a curl route. The receiver attempted to stiff-arm the defender, who fell and couldn’t wrap up Aiyuk’s ankles.
He scampered into the end zone to put ASU on top.
Strolling into the end zone. @ASUFootball strikes first!
Manny Wilkins finds Brandon Aiyuk for the TD. pic.twitter.com/4FyS7Cn3O8
— CBS Sports Network (@CBSSportsNet) September 16, 2018
It was the end of a nine-play, 60-yard drive that lasted 2:16.
The Sun Devils led 7-0 at the end of the first quarter.