ASU’s offense can’t get anything going in road loss to Oregon State
A depleted Arizona State Sun Devils team couldn’t quite get it going in a 24-10 loss to the Oregon State Beavers in Corvallis on Saturday night.
ASU came into the contest without two of its biggest contributors in senior linebacker Darien Butler and senior tight end Curtis Hodges, the latter of which is the team’s second-leading receiver.
The LB missed due to an undisclosed injury — which DC Antonio Pierce said was a doctor/head coach’s decision — while the TE didn’t make the final regular-season road trip because of the two-car accident he and four other teammates were involved in on Thursday.
Unfortunately for Sun Devil fans, the reoccurring theme of ASU beating itself showed its ugly head at Reser Stadium.
ASU committed a whopping 10 penalties for 64 yards, seven of which were false starts.
“Well I mean any time you go backwards offensively, you do it to yourself,” head coach Herm Edwards told reporters postgame. “It’s amazing to me because last week when you looked at Washington, they did the same thing — (the D-line would) shift. It wasn’t really a factor.
“All of a sudden we get here and it becomes a factor. We practice against it, we talk about it, they know it. And for some reason they still find a way to move when they can’t move. … We went on silent count. You can’t move. That’s the bottom line. Just can’t move, can’t flinch or they’re going to call it.”
Perhaps it was the fact that both teams knew what was — or wasn’t — still on the line for their respective seasons, as Utah’s 38-7 win over Oregon clinched the Pac-12 South title for the Utes while simultaneously keeping the North Division crown up for grabs.
But it was a few key plays that ASU couldn’t capitalize on that dictated the scoreboard on Saturday night.
Both of Arizona State’s kickers Cristian Zendejas and Logan Tyler missed field goals in the first half, a 32-yard field goal and 49-yarder, respectively.
“We bogged down too many times offensively. … You have to move the ball,” Edwards said. “You just have to move the ball. College football allows you to move the ball. We have to move the ball better than that. We can’t bog down and go two or three possessions and not move the ball.”
“There’s no consistency in our offense right now and that’s what you need — you need some consistency,” he added. “You have to move the ball. You can’t stall out. You can’t go three or four plays and punt. You just can’t do that. We have to do a better job there.”
And after scoring their only touchdown of the game to cut the deficit to 17-10 — which came in the fourth quarter off a fumble recovered inside the Beavers’ five-yard line — the Sun Devils allowed a 47-yard touchdown run to Oregon State’s Jack Colletto on 4th-and-2 to seal the game.
OSU finished the night with a total of 325 yards on offense (235 rushing) en route to a perfect 6-0 home record on the year.
“Defensively, our gap integrity on a couple of those runs hurt us too,” Edwards said. “We talked about it all week. We talked about these guys are gonna run.
“You’re going to have to have the right gap responsibilities and a couple times on a couple long ones, on the one (Colletto) ran, we’re just not in our gap and he hit us on the run. And that’s the shame of it all. These guys work that hard all week and all it takes is one little mistake like that and all of a sudden the game changes on us.”
Senior cornerback Chase Lucas made his 48th career start, the most ever in Arizona State history.
ASU will finish the 2021 regular season at home against the Arizona Wildcats in the Territorial Cup on Saturday.
Kickoff is set for 2 p.m. Catch all the action on ESPN 620 AM / 98.7 FM HD-2.