Tuesday, July 24, 2007


Premature Premonitions, Part III: The Schedule

You think you can do better? be my guest. At the end of the year I'll be sure to point out every one I get right and ignore every one I get wrong.

9/1, San Jose State: Former UA coach Dick Tomey has a knack for beating ASU and this will be closer than most think. Expect a tough defense, volumes of trick plays, and for this game to still be in doubt at halftime. SJSU was a bowl team last year, and after scaring the piss out of me the Devils will pull away in the second half. ASU by 17

9/8, Colorado: The Buffs went on the road last year and almost pulled off an upset at Georgia, but I think they're still playing intramurals, brother. Too much offense on our side of the ball and the crowd should be good. ASU by 21

9/15, San Diego State: SDSU returns 4 defensive starters from a 3-9 team. While that may help, it won't help enough against Ryan Torain and a senior-laden O-line. The defense should be starting to gel by now. ASU by 24

9/22, Oregon State: Nobody in Corvallis realizes how much they're going to miss departed QB Matt Moore. He was the heart and soul of the team that beat USC and I don't expect them to be in fighting shape by week four. ASU by 14

9/29, at Stanford: I can't believe the Devils haven't won a Pac-10 roadie in Cali since 1999. Coach Erickson has the team playing with confidence and Dirk Koetter is a distant memory. ASU by 30+

10/6, at Washington State: The first serious road trip will be close- it's WSU’s homecoming and QB Brink's a gamer. They have some quality receivers but their run game is a bit suspect. ASU by 7

10/13, Washington: Trap game! ASU returns home at a 6-0 mark and there's a buzz building around town causing the best crowd of the year. UW will be anywhere from 2-3 to 0-5 and hungry for a win. If Dirk's still coaching this is a loss. ASU by 13

10/27, Cal: The Devils will be fresh off of a bye week and seeking redemption after last year's embarassment in Berkeley, but ASU's secondary + DeSean Jackson = bad news, even on Homecoming. Cal by 4

11/3, at Oregon: I'm not sold on QB Dennis Dixon despite last year's statstical beat down in Tempe (lots of screen passes that went long) and Coach Belotti will probably be shuffling Leaf the younger in by this point in the season. ASU by 9

11/10, at UCLA: 20 returning starters for the Bruins, holy freaking God. Their strength last year was the run D and that won't change. Expect Torain to have his worst day of the year. UCLA by 12

11/22, USC: Arizona State has a hard time getting a good crowd on Thanksgiving Day and it's freakin' USC. The young Trojan talent is firing on all cylinders by now and the tryptophan leaves the Devils flat. USC by 27

12/1, Arizona: The premier matchup will be UA's defense against ASU's offense, but the game will be decided by Air-izona vs. the Devil D. If concussion prone Willie Tuitama still has his head on his shoulders by week 12, the kittycat offense will be decent but not good enough. ASU will be trying to save face after two consecutive losses and Erickson won't let them come out flat. ASU by 10

Once again we’re the best of the rest of the Pac-10 at 9-3. We still don’t have the horses to run with the big boys but we’re not beating ourselves against the other dwarves. With this schedule we should be better but it’ll take a minor miracle to run through the final five games with two or fewer losses. The only chance is that the players adapt and buy into Erickson’s schemes quickly and all of the outstanding questions are answered with good fortune.

Bowl game, Nebraska: Sam Keller throws for 600+ yards and 6 TD's in a Husker rout. He then goes into the stands and fucks half of ASU's women, yet mysteriously all women present become pregnant and give birth to coked-up, rocket-armed cyborgs that destroy the earth. Far fetched, yes, but it's as close to anyone's bowl prediction made before fall camp.

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Not bad Big Jon - I like the way you have the schedule shaking down - I hope we don't have one of those bad games that we should win but don't in the early half. Likewise I would love to see no blow outs in the games - if ASU can be competitive I'll be happy - the blow outs hurt worse than the 2 point loses for me. Per your prognostication we only go down in fames to USC which is understandable. If I am truly playing the wishes card _ I want to beat a ranked team. Looking at our schedule that might mean only USC and CAL for this to happen, but who knows, UO or OSU could be there. Nice work.
I toyed with the idea of throwing in one of those games that we should win but don't, but I think those were more a symptom of the Dirk Koetter era. After watching his Miami and Oregon State squads, I can't ever remember an Erickson-coached team coming out flat.

UCLA is going to be a monster but they're not unstoppable. They'll almost definitely be ranked in November unless they suffer a Koetter-style fate from Karl Dorrell, but most likely their senior leadership will get them through those traps.
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