ESPN: What is Todd Graham’s worst loss at ASU?
Back-to-back 10-win seasons. The 2013 Pac-12 South Title. The 2013 Pac-12 Coach of the Year.
Coach Todd Graham has made his impact felt at ASU, by any measure.
He appeared to be off to his best coaching job yet in 2014, leading ASU to the No. 6 ranking in the College Football Playoff before having arguably the worst loss of his ASU career.
ESPN.com’s Ted Miller listed the worst losses for Pac-12 South coaches Monday, saying the Sun Devils’ 35-27 loss to Oregon State this past season was Graham’s entry to the list.
This could have been the oddly flat performance in the 37-23 Holiday Bowl loss against an overmatched Texas Tech team in 2013, but the oddly flat performance at Oregon State was more meaningful. If the then-No. 6 Sun Devils had not joined Colorado as the Beavers’ only two conference victories, who knows how that might have set things up for the Territorial Cup against Arizona with the South on the line in the regular-season finale? Perhaps the Sun Devils would have played with just an itty-bitty bit more fire against the Wildcats knowing they were in the mix for a spot in the College Football Playoff. Who knows? As it was, ASU simply let up and allowed an Oregon State team riding a four-game losing streak to steal the game in the fourth quarter and end the Sun Devils five-game winning streak. Arizona State managed just three points in the fourth against a defense that yielded 33 points per game.
ASU entered the game with their playoff hopes riding high, only to have them shrivel up in the cold of Corvallis, Ore.
The Sun Devils seemingly couldn’t get anything going all night, highlighted by Taylor Kelly throwing a pick-six to all-but seal the defeat.
The loss dropped ASU out of a college football playoff spot, but dropped them out of control of the Pac-12 South before they eventually lost to Arizona and finished tied for second in the division.