NCAA

Weber State vs Arizona State Preview

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arizona state footballTUCSON, Ariz. – The Weber State Wildcats went 2-10 in 2013 with a 32-7 win to close out the year and hit the road to start 2014 to play the No. 19 Arizona State Sun Devils who went 10-4 after a 37-23 National University Holiday Bowl loss to Texas Tech.

The Wildcats’ offense managed only 16 points per game in 2013 and will return a key contributor in senior running back Bo Bolen who is a muli-faceted threat. Bolen rushed for 616 yards, had 27 receptions for 213 yards, and had 335 return yards for Weber State last season. Sophomores Jadrian Clark and Billy Green are competing for the starting quarterback spot while Cam Livingston and Shaydon Kehano will try to fill the huge hole left at wide out by Erik Walker’s (62 catches, 658 yards, 3 TD) departure.

The defensive unit lost its best player in Anthony Morales to the NFL. Junior linebacker Roman Valenzuela will be a key player at linebacker while the defensive secondary will be held down at the corners by junior Adam Padilla and senior Deon’tae Florence as the unit attempts to erase the memory of 41 points allowed per game last season.

On the other hand, the Arizona State offense was in high gear in 2013 averaging 40 points a game led by quarterback Taylor Kelly who threw for 3,635 yards and 28 touchdowns while rushing for 608 yards and 9 touchdowns. This type of production is common for a Rich Rodriguez-style offense but the team must fill the gap left by leading rusher Marion Grice’ 996 yards rushing and 14 touchdowns to go along with 50 catches for 438 yards and six more touchdowns. DJ Foster and Deantre Lewis combined for more than 600 yards and seven touchdowns a year ago and will look to make up for that production. Jalen Strong looks for a repeat of his 75 catch, 1,122 yards and seven touchdown performance last season.

The Sun Devils’ defense will need to get production from new places with only a couple of starters having seen extended playing time last season. Sam linebacker Salamo Fiso will be a key player on the defense that hopes to not have a drop off from allowing 27 points a game last season.

Keys for Weber State Win

The defense will have to force a lot of turnovers and Bo Bolen will have to be a huge factor.

Keys For Arizona State Win

Taylor Kelly needs to keep the offense churning with the running game flowing through new hands. Defense needs to make stops.

Key Injuries :

None

Favorite:

Latest Line, N/A

Conclusion:

Arizona State should be able to take care of business in this match-up.

About Mark West

Mark West grew up playing and loving baseball. In college, he found an interest in writing and reporting on sports. He graduated from Arkansas State University in 1999 with a Bachelor of Science in Radio and Television Broadcasting with a News emphasis and a minor in Political Science. Mark began writing a few years ago informally about politics and sports on various blogs, but has focused primarily on baseball writing for the last two years. He loves Arkansas State Red Wolves baseball and writes about the games and the players for the Red Wolves and the Sun Belt Conference. Mark is a member of the National Collegiate Baseball Writers Association, giving him official votes in the Dick Howser Trophy, Regional Players of the Year, and NCBWA All-America voting.

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