TOP STORIES OF THE DAY: Go to the TOP RIGHT HAND CORNER FOR CONFERENCES STORIES
STATS PERFORM TOP 25
|1||North Dakota State (43)||2-1||1,334||1|
|T-2||South Dakota State (5)||2-1||1,267||2|
|14||William & Mary||3-0||610||15|
|23||Stephen F. Austin||1-2||131||21|
|25||North Carolina Central||3-0||104||NR|
Others Receiving Votes (schools listed on two or more ballots): Furman (2-1, 1-0 Southern) 99; Southeastern Louisiana (1-2, 0-0 Southland) 98; Kennesaw State (0-2, 0-1 ASUN-WAC) 93; Southeast Missouri (2-1, 0-0 Ohio Valley) 93; Austin Peay (3-1, 3-0 ASUN-WAC) 87; UC Davis (1-2, 0-0 Big Sky) 82; ETSU (1-2, 0-2 Southern) 46; Elon (2-1, 0-0 CAA) 28; Fordham (3-0, 0-0 Patriot) 27; Dartmouth (1-0, 0-0 Ivy) 23; New Hampshire (2-1, 2-0 CAA) 19; Northern Arizona (1-2, 0-0 Big Sky) 5; Youngstown State (2-1, 0-0 Missouri Valley) 5; South Dakota (1-2, 0-0 Missouri Valley) 2
EXCEL H SPORTS TOP 25 COLLEGE FOOTBALL RANKINGS (NEW) SEPTEMBER 25, 2022
Preseason Rankings were released July 2, 2022
1. Georgia 4-0 1
2. Alabama 4-0 2
3. Ohio State 4-0 3
4. Clemson 4-0 4
5. Michigan 4-0 5
6. Southern California 4-0 6
7. Oklahoma State 3-0 7
8. North Carolina State 4-0 9
9. Utah 3-1 12
10. Kentucky 4-0 10
11. Baylor 3-1 13
12. Mississippi 4-0 14
13. Penn State 4-0 15
14. Oklahoma 3-1 8
15. Arkansas 3-1 10
17. Minnesota 4-0 20
18. Washington 4-0 24
19. Pittsburgh 3-1 22
20. Tennessee 4-0 25
21. Cincinnati 3-1 21
22. Oregon 3-1 25
23. Florida 2-2 23
23. Washington State 3-1 16
25. Wake Forest 3-1 25
25. Kansas State 3-1 NR
25. Texas A & M 3-1 NR
Just below the 25:
Mississippi State, Kansas, Notre Dame, Louisiana State, Texas San Antonio, Air Force, Texas, Florida State, UCLA, North Carolina, Iowa State, West Virginia, Fresno State, Central Florida, Boise State, Louisville, Oregon State, Appalachian State, Coastal Carolina, Texas Christian, Texas Tech, Syracuse, San Diego State, Maryland, California, Southern Methodist, East Carolina, Georgia State, Liberty, Stanford, Memphis, Marshall, Tulane, Miami of Ohio, Troy, South Alabama, Brigham Young, Michigan State, Miami of Florida, Wisconsin, Middle Tennessee State, South Carolina, Northern Illinois, Western Michigan, Toledo
Devastating Loss for ASU
by: Doug Seagrave/Excel H Sports West
The Arizona State Sun Devils returned to Frank Kush Field at Sun Devil Stadium on Saturday after a rough trip to Oklahoma last week where the Cowboys of Oklahoma State easily triumphed 34-17. The Eagles of Eastern Michigan traveled from Ypsilanti to Tempe for a PAC-12 vs. MAC matchup. Both squads entered the game with a 1-1 record. ASU Head Coach Herm Edwards entered the game with a career record of 26-20. Eastern Michigan is coached by Chris Creighton. Creighton is 35-58 in his 9-year tenure at EMU and is 177-104 overall. The Sun Devils were a heavy favorite to win (20.5).
Another beautiful night for football in the desert. 91 degrees at kickoff with low humidity. The football performance by the Sun Devils was dismal. Eastern Michigan never trailed in the 30-21 victory and became the 1st Mid-American Conference to beat a PAC-12 team in regular season play.
The Eagles took the opening kickoff, and their first drive went 12 plays and 56 yards. Jesus Gomez kicked a 27-yard field goal to lead 3-0. The Sun Devil offense went 3 and out on their first possession.
The Eagles 2nd possession mixed the powerful run game with quarterback Taylor Powell connecting on several pass plays. Jaylon Jackson capped the drive with a 4-yard touchdown run and Gomez added the PAT giving EMU a 10-0 lead. The drive was 11 plays, 80 yards, and took 5:37 off the clock. ASU again followed the scoring drive with a short 3 and out possession.
The ASU defense provided a glimmer of hope in the next series. Kejuan Markham intercepted a pass from Taylor Powell at the ASU 46-yardline with 40 seconds left in the 1st quarter. Sun Devil quarterback Emory Jones quickly capitalized by completing a 3-yard touchdown pass to WR Andre Jones. Carter Brown added the PAT to cut the Eagles lead to 10-7.
Eastern Michigan’s offense responded with another dominating drive. Starting QB Taylor Powell was injured during the drive and replaced by Austin Smith. The Eagles did not miss a beat with Smith at the helm. Smith capped a 13-play 75-yard drive with a 6-yard TD pass to Hassan Beydoun with 8:11 remaining in the 2nd quarter to make the lead 17-7.
QB Emory Jones led the Sun Devils to a touchdown on the next possession. ASU converted a big 3rd -down play when Jones hit Andre Johnson with a 15-yard completion on 3rd and 10. Jones capped the 11-play drive with a 3-yard touchdown run. Brown kicked the PAT to close the gap to 17-14.
The storyline of the half, and the night, was the inability of the ASU defense to stop the Eagles offense, especially the ground game led by running back Samson Evans. EMU quickly responded by scoring a touchdown with 1:16 left spurred by a 42-yard pass from the backup QB Smith to Tanner Knue and culminating with a 3-yard touchdown run by Samson Evans. The Eagles led 24-14 at halftime.
The Sun Devil nightmare continued in the 2nd half. Gomez tacked on an Eagle field goal with 7:04 left in the 3rd quarter to extend the lead to 27-14.
The ASU offense did give the home fans hope when Xazavian Valladay scampered 42-yards for a touchdown with 10:55 left in the game to make the score 27-24.
The Sun Devil defense could not stop the Eagles when it mattered most. EMU battered the ASU defense on the next possession with a powerful ground game. They went 9 plays and chewed up 5:44 off the clock before kicking a 19-yard field goal with 4:26 left in the game to take a 30-24 lead.
ASU took their final possession of the game with a chance to take the lead. Several penalties stifled hope for a positive outcome. Fittingly, all hope ended when Emory Jones completed a 10-yard pass to Jalin Conyers only to have him fumble. The Eagles recovered with 2:11 left in the game. They ran the clock out for the 30-21 victory.
It was a frustrating day in Tempe. ASU came into the game as heavy favorites. The Eagles punished the Sun Devils with their physical ground game. RB Samson Evan had a career game with 257 yards rushing on 35 carries. They dominated the line of scrimmage and the time of possession.
Emory Jones finished 20-32 for 185 yards passing with 1 TD. X Valladay had 16 carries for 127 yards rushing.
The Eagles improve to 2-1. The Sun Devils are now 1-2 and will host a good Utah team on 9-24.
Sun Devil fans are not happy, as evidenced by the booing during the game, and the calls for Coach Herm Edwards to be fired. Tough times in Tempe.
SUN DEVILS SCORE BIG WIN
by: Doug Seagrave/Excel H Sports West
The Arizona State Sun Devils football team opened the 2022 campaign on Frank Kush Field at Sun Devil Stadium on a warm Thursday Night (103 degrees at kickoff) against the Lumberjacks from in-state rival Northern Arizona University. ASU routed the Lumberjacks 40-3.
The Sun Devils came into the season with as many questions as any program in the country. Last year’s 8-5 record was a disappointment after starting the season with high expectations. The end came with a 20-13 loss to the Wisconsin Badgers in the Las Vegas Bowl. Assistant coaching changes, along with 43 new players in the program, make a positive start important for the faithful in Tempe.
Coach Herm Edwards is in his 5th season (25-18) at the helm in Tempe and has maintained his optimism while teaching the Sun Devil way. A key to success is the play of QB Emory Jones, a transfer from the University of Florida, as he replaces veteran Jayden Daniels after the latter’s transfer to LSU.
The NAU Lumberjacks were 5-6 last year. The highlight of their season was a 21-19 win over the Arizona Wildcats. Head Coach Chris Ball is a former ASU assistant coach. The Lumberjacks would find themselves overmatched.
The Lumberjacks received the opening kickoff and managed to get a first down before having to punt. QB Emory Jones started his ASU career with a scoring drive that ended with Kicker Carter Brown connecting on a 27-yard field goal. Jones looked sharp in his 1st drive connecting on 4 of 5 passes, utilizing 6’8 wide receiver Messiah Swinson on 2 of those connections. The drive went 11 plays for 69 yards and took 5:07. 3-0 Sun Devils. It was the only score in the 1st quarter.
The Sun Devils were able to sustain a methodical drive from their own 28-yard line to score their 1st touchdown of the 2022 campaign. QB Jones scored on a 1-yard sneak on 4th down to put ASU up 10-0 with 8:05 left in the 2nd quarter. The TD drive took 9 plays, 72 yards, and 4:42. Brown added the extra point.
A targeting call with 4:22 left in the half led to a 17-0 lead for the Sun Devils. QB Emory Jones completed a 3rd down pass that fell just short of the line to gain, and the punt team took the field. However, the officials put the prior play under review. NAU defensive end Eloi Kwete was called for targeting because of helmet-to-helmet contact with Jones on the pass. The result was a 1st down for the Devils and an ejection for Kwete.
ASU capitalized on the penalty. Running back Xazavian Vallady scored on a touchdown run. The drive went 6 plays, 75 yards, and took 2:39.
Things quickly worsened for the Lumberjacks on their next possession. QB RJ Martinez was picked off by Linebacker Kyle Soelle. The Sun Devils scored after just 2 plays when QB Emory Jones kept it himself for a 17-yard touchdown with 2:19 left in the first half. Brown was successful on the PAT and the lead was 24-0. The drive was only 2 plays covering 45 yards and took only :45.
NAU had a glimmer of hope as the next ASU possession ended with Emory Jones being sacked and fumbling. NAU recovered the ball deep in ASU territory. The Lumberjacks could not move the ball, but kicker Collin Robbins was able to kick a 47-yard field goal to make the score 24-3 with :05 left in the half.
ASU dominated the 1st half scoring and statistics. The Sun Devils had 276 total yards to 82 for the Lumberjacks. ASU had 15 first downs to 5 for NAU. QB Emory Jones was efficient as he completed 10 of 12 passes for 120 yards. He did not throw an interception.
ASU received the 2nd half kickoff and continued the dominance. X Vallady capped a short drive with a 27-yard TD run. The PAT was good, and the Sun Devils took a 31-3 lead. The drive was 5 plays, 68 yards, and took 2:28.
The Lumberjacks then quickly returned the ball to the Sun Devils as QB Martinez threw an interception to Safety Chris Edmonds, who returned it 36 yards into NAU territory. ASU kicker Carter Brown connected on a 36-yard field goal to make the score 34-3.
The Sun Devils began running the clock in their next drive with a 10-play drive that took 5:14 and resulted in Brown kicking a 44-yard field goal to make it 37-3 with :14 left in the 3rd quarter. Brown would cap the scoring by adding another 44-yarder with 7:54 left in the game to make it 40-3.
ASU outgained NAU 419 yards to 120 for NAU. Quarterback Emory Jones completed 13-18 passes for 152 yards. Running back X Valladay had 15 carries for 116 yards and 2 touchdowns.
Beating a team like NAU might not provide many predictors of future success. We do know Emory Jones had a solid game with both his arm and his feet. The running game was good. The defense was stout. Special teams play was very good. ASU will find many more answers about their program when they travel to Oklahoma State for their next game on September 10.