The Territorial Cup in the Graham-RichRod era: By the numbers

Nov 24, 2016, 10:00 AM
Arizona Wildcats RB Nick Wilson in the 2014 Territorial Cup against the Arizona State Sun Devils....
Arizona Wildcats RB Nick Wilson in the 2014 Territorial Cup against the Arizona State Sun Devils.

The Arizona State Sun Devils (5-6) and Arizona Wildcats (2-9) will face off on ESPN to compete in the annual Territorial Cup on Friday night.

ASU coach Todd Graham will go head-to-head with Arizona coach Rich Rodriguez for the fifth year in a row. Both coaches were hired in 2012 and Graham holds a 3-1 advantage in the series.

Here’s a look at the ASU and Arizona rivalry from the past four seasons.


The Sun Devils and Wildcats have collectively been nationally ranked three times in their matchups since the 2012 season. ASU was ranked in 2013 and 2014 while Arizona was ranked in 2014. This year is a bit different. Both teams have losing records entering the Territorial Cup, which has not happened since 2003. In addition, ASU and Arizona are on a combined 13-game losing streak. ASU has lost their last five games and Arizona is on a larger eight-game skid. Regardless of the outcome, both teams will be greatly out of reach for winning the Pac-12 South division title with Colorado on top at 7-1.


The last four matchups have featured a Sun Devil offensive onslaught with an average of 46.5 points per game. ASU has scored a total of 186 points compared to Arizona’s 134 total points and 33.5 average. In each of their three wins, the Sun Devils have tallied at least 40 points.


The Wildcats have tallied 1,207 total yards in their three losses compared to ASU’s 1,883 yards. In Arizona’s only win, it still got beat by 47 yards on the stat sheet.


The number of turnovers for the Wildcats and Sun Devils, respectively. In addition to Arizona nearly  doubling ASU in turnovers, eight of the Wildcat turnovers have been interceptions. Arguably the most significant statistic in football, the turnover margin played a key role in determining the outcome of the past few games.


Going into Friday night’s matchup, the Wildcats will have used a total of five different quarterbacks compared to ASU’s two. The difference has a direct correlation in nearly every quarterback-relevant statistic.

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