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Arizona State opens as an 11-point underdog against USC Trojans

This Thursday, Aug. 29, 2019, file photo, shows the Pac-12 logo during the second half of an NCAA college football game between Arizona State and Kent State, in Tempe, Ariz. (AP Photo/Ralph Freso, File)

The Arizona State Sun Devils are double-digit underdogs against the USC Trojans in Los Angeles on Saturday.

That’s the takeaway from the early betting line for the contest, however, as the Sun Devils opened as 11-point underdogs, according to Circa Sports.

The Sun Devils are 13-23 all-time against the Trojans and have lost four of five to USC, dating back to 2015.

ASU last defeated the Trojans 38-35 in 2018, when running back Eno Benjamin racked up 185 rushing yards and two touchdowns on 29 carries.

The Sun Devils are coming off an 8-5 season that included a 20-14 victory in the 2019 Sun Bowl. The Trojans also went 8-5 a year ago, falling to Iowa, 49-24, in the Holiday Bowl.

ASU lost to USC, 31-26, last year in a game that saw backup Joey Yellen throw for 292 yards and four touchdowns after starter Jayden Daniels got injured.

The Trojans were picked by the media last month to win the Pac-12 South Division with the Sun Devils expected to finish second in the six-team division.

The Sun Devils will be pressed to slow down former Desert Mountain quarterback Kedon Slovis, a year after Slovis threw for 3,502 yards and 30 touchdowns as a freshman in 12 appearances.

The Trojans also bring back second-leading receiver Amon-Ra St. Brown, who had 1,042 yards on 77 receptions with six touchdowns as a sophomore in 2019.

The Sun Devils bring back Daniels, who threw for 2,943 yards and 17 touchdowns as a freshman. They must replace 1,000-yard rusher Benjamin and 1,000-yard receiver Brandon Aiyuk.

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