Dec. 11, 2000
TEMPE, Ariz. - Arizona State Sun Devils vs. Boston College Eagles (6-5)Jeep Aloha Bowl * Monday, Dec. 25, 2000 * 1:30 p.m. MST/10:30 a.m. HSTAloha Stadium * Honolulu, HawaiiABC/Westwood One/Sun Devil Sports Network
Coming off a 30-17 victory over Arizona on Nov. 24, ASU's second straight victory in the intrastate showdown, the Arizona State Sun Devils make a return trip to the Jeep Aloha Bowl on Christmas Day. Their second appearance on the islands in as many years, the Sun Devils (6-5) will take on Boston College which brings an identical 6-5 record into the bowl game. Kickoff is slated for 1:30 p.m. MST/10:30 a.m. HST at Aloha Stadium in Honolulu. With their win over the Wildcats, the Sun Devils (6-5, 3-5 Pac-10) became bowl eligible for the fourth time in five seasons and snapped a three-game losing streak. ASU's 6-5 regular-season record marks the 56th winning season in 89 years of football history. The Sun Devils now have a 490-290-24 (.624) all-time mark.
The Jeep Aloha BowlThis year marks the 19th Aloha Bowl and a Pac-10 team has been represented in all but five of them, posting a 5-8 record. Last season, Arizona State made its first trip to the Jeep Aloha Bowl and its first trip to the United States' 50th state since 1979, falling to Wake Forest 23-3. Since the Aloha Bowl began in 1982, Oregon State is the only conference team that has not played there.
In the SeriesThe Jeep Aloha Bowl will mark the first meeting between Arizona State and Boston College. The Sun Devils are 4-1 against teams from the Big East Conference with the most recent game being a 23-12 win at Miami on Sept. 13, 1997. ASU is 1-1 vs. Miami, 1-0 vs. Pittsburgh, 1-0 vs. West Virginia and 1-0 vs. Rutgers.
ExposureABC will televise the game to a national audience with Brent Musberger, Gary Danielson and Jack Arute (sidelines) calling the action. Westwood One Sports in association with Host Communications will broadcast the game to a national radio audience, while the Sun Devil Sports Network will carry the game live on its 12-station network on XTRA 910 AM and KFYI 550 AM. Tim Healey, Jeff Van Raaphorst, Mark Asher (sidelines), Vince Marotta and Doug Plank (pregame and postgame) will call the action. The bowl game will be heard live on ASU's official web site at www.TheSunDevils.com.
Bowl HistoryThis year's bowl appearance will mark the 19th all-time for the Sun Devils who own a 10-7-1 record in postseason play. Arizona State has qualified for postseason play in four of the last five seasons, while the team's .583 postseason winning percentage ranks second in the conference and its 19 bowl appearances is tied for four among Pac-10 schools. This season, five Pac-10 schools have posted the requisite number of wins to earn bowl berths including Washington, Oregon State, Oregon, UCLA and ASU.
Pac-10 Bowl RecordsSchool W L T Pct.USC 25 14 0 .641Arizona State 10 7 1 .583Washington St. 4 3 0 .571UCLA 11 10 1 .524Washington 13 12 1 .519Stanford 9 9 1 .500Oregon State 2 3 0 .400California 5 7 1 .423Arizona 5 7 1 .423Oregon 5 9 0 .357
Pac-10 Bowl AppearancesSchool Appearances Last 5 YearsUSC 39 1Washington 27 5*UCLA 23 3*Arizona State 19 4*Stanford 19 2Oregon 15 4*California 13 1Arizona 13 2Washington State 7 1Oregon State 5 2** includes 2000 bowl invitations
On the IslandsArizona State has visited Hawaii a total of five times, last year to the Aloha Bowl and to play the Rainbow Warriors the previous four times. The Sun Devils are 3-2 in those five games which were played in 1955, 1959, 1974, 1979 and 1999.
Senior FarewellThe Arizona State squad features 18 seniors including quarterbacks Griffin Goodman and Ryan Kealy, wide receivers Mike Aguirre, Roderick Denetso, Brian Forth and Richard Williams, defensive backs Nijrell Eason, Craig Koontz, Christon Rance and Kenny Williams, fullback Stephen Trejo, linebackers Adam Archuleta and Adam Tanke, offensive linemen Victor Leyva and Kenneth Williamson, tight end Jason Moore and defensive linemen Chï¿½ Britton and Quincy Yancy.
Todd Heap One of Three Finalists for John Mackey AwardJunior Todd Heap was been named one of three finalists for the inaugural John Mackey Award which goes the top tight end in college football. The Nassau County Sports Commission in Manhasset, N.Y., narrowed down the list down to three finalists - Heap, Alge Crumpler of North Carolina and Tim Stratton of Purdue - on Nov. 21, while Stratton was announced as the winner of the award in n a press reception in New York City on Dec. 4. A Syracuse graduate, John Mackey was a five-time Pro Bowl selection. Called the best tight end in NFL history, he is one of two true tight ends to be inducted into the Pro Football Hall of Fame. The selection committee for the award includes NFL greats Mark Bavaro, Keith Jackson, and Kellen Winslow, as well as media members Lee Corso of ESPN, Sean McDonough, Spencer Tilllman and Marc Connolly.
National Award NomineesFour Sun Devils have been named finalists or semifinalists for national awards which are annually awarded to the top player in college football at their respective positions including junior tight end Todd Heap who was one of three finalists for the John Mackey Award. Senior linebacker Adam Archuleta was one of 11 semifinalists for the Dick Butkus Award, which annually recognizes the top linebacker in the country, and one of 15 players nominated for Football News' 2000 Defensive Players of the Year. Junior punter Nick Murphy was named one of 10 finalists for the inaugural Ray Guy award which recognizes the nation's top punter in the nation, while senior Nijrell Eason was one of 12 semifinalists for the Jim Thorpe Award, awarded annually since 1986 to the top defensive back in the nation.
Back on TrackArizona State's victory at Arizona snapped a three-game losing streak which had included back-to-back double-overtime losses to then No. 7 Oregon and USC. ASU's three consecutive losses were the first since the team dropped the last three games of the 1994 season. Including those three consecutive conference defeats, Arizona State has dropped back-to-back conference games just two times in the last four seasons. Since 1995, the Sun Devils' only other back-to-back Pac-10 losses came at Oregon and at Arizona to end the 1998 season.
Last Time OutSophomore kicker Mike Barth kicked three field goals and ran 13 yards for a touchdown on a fake field-goal play as Arizona State beat Arizona 30-17 on Nov. 24 to snap a three-game losing streak and become bowl eligible for the fourth time in five seasons. The victory marked the second consecutive win for ASU in the series and the second time in as many years that the Desert Showdown has determined the postseason future of the two teams.
Freshman defensive end Terrell Suggs recovered a fumble by Arizona's Clarence Farmer in the end zone for a touchdown, while an interception and another fumble by the Wildcats set up two of Barth's field goals. Arizona (5-6, 3-5) lost its fifth straight, its longest losing streak in one season since 1958. Ortege Jenkins, in his final game for Arizona, threw for a touchdown and ran for another. He completed 16 of 31 passes for 176 yards but was sacked eight times.
Arizona led 10-6 at halftime on Jenkins' 3-yard touchdown run, set up by Bobby Wade's 54-yard punt return. The punting game was a major difference in the contest. Junior wide receiver Donnie O'Neal blocked a running, rugby-style punt attempt by Arizona's Chris Palic early in the third quarter to give ASU the ball at the Arizona 15. The Sun Devils weren't able to move the ball, but on a field-goal attempt, holder Griffin Goodman handed the ball to Barth, who ran up the middle for the score to put Arizona State up 13-10 with 12:09 left in the third quarter.
The Wildcats responded with a seven-play, 77-yard drive. Farmer's 44-yard run was the big play in the drive, while Jenkins threw 14 yards to wide-open tight end Brandon Manumaleuna for a touchdown to give Arizona its final lead, 17-13, with 3:40 left in the third. On Arizona State's next possession, Nick Murphy's 45-yard punt went out of bounds at the Arizona 3, but Farmer fumbled on the next play and Suggs recovered and ran the ball into the endzone to put ASU ahead 20-17 and ahead for good with six minutes left in the third. The Sun Devils went 60 yards in 11 plays to make it 27-17 on Tom Pace's 3-yard touchdown run on the first play of the fourth quarter, while Leo Mills' fumble, recovered by Arizona State's Willie Daniel, set up Barth's 48-yard field goal that put ASU up 30-17 with 9:05 remaining in the game. UA outgained ASU 371 yards to 264 in total offense, but the Sun Devils did not turn the ball over in the game to earn the 30-17 victory.
All-Conference SelectionsSenior outside linebacker Adam Archuleta was named the Pacific-10 Conference Defensive Player of the Year, while freshman defensive end Terrell Suggs was named the Freshman of the Year.
Archuleta, who also earned first-team Pac-10 defensive honors, finished the regular season as the conference leader in tackles with 119, a whopping 86 of which were solo efforts. Archuleta has already been named the NFL Draft Report National Defensive Most Valuable Player and has earned first-team All-America honors from Gannett News Services and NFL Draft Report.
Suggs, who was the first true freshman at ASU to make a start in the team's season debut since 1974, was among the Pac-10 leaders in quarterback sacks (third, 10 for minus-60 yards) and tackles for loss (7th, 16 for minus-72 yards). In addition, Suggs forced four fumbles and managed one touchdown on a fumble recovery and another on a 48-yard interception return.
Four Sun Devils earned first-team All-Conference honors, trailing just Pac-10 co-champions Washington and Oregon State (5) in first-team selections, while a total of 10 Sun Devils appeared on the list of all-conference honorees.
Pac-10 Defensive Player of the Year: OLB Adam Archuleta
Pac-10 Freshman of the Year: DE Terrell Suggs
All-Pac-10 Second Team (ASU selections):OL Levi Jones
Through the AirOn the season, ASU's four quarterbacks have already thrown for 2,935 yards which is the second-best single-season passing effort in school history, passing the mark of 2,884 yards in 1996 with 189 passing yards at Arizona Nov. 24. The school single-season mark is 3,077 yards by the 1978 squad. If ASU continues its current pace of 266.8 passing yards per game, the team would also shatter the school record of 259.0 ypg set in 1998 (2,849 yards in 11 games).
With the 314-yard performance vs. the USC Trojans on Nov. 4, the Sun Devils have five 300-plus-yard passing games on the season, the most since the 1989 team had three all season. Prior to the Washington game, ASU's four quarterbacks have racked up 1,159 passing yards in three games including 374 yards against Utah State, 365 yards at UCLA and 420 yards vs. Cal. The last time ASU topped 1,000 yards in three games was in 1990 (1,090 - 374 vs. WSU, 242 vs. Arizona, 474 vs. Houston).
Spreading the WealthThis season's squad features three players who have 500 yards or more receiving yards, marking the first time in 46 years that three Sun Devils have accomplished that feat. The 1964 squad was the last to have three 500-plus-yard receivers in Ben Hawkins (42 catches, 719 yards), Jerry Smith (42c, 618y) and Larry Todd (35c, 633y). This season, junior Todd Heap leads the receiving corps with 45 catches, 617 yards and three TDs, while junior Donnie O'Neal is second with 39 catches for 661 yards and seven TDs followed by senior Richard Williams who has 38 catches for 666 yards and seven TDs.
Fourteen players have caught passes this year for the Sun Devils including six wide receivers, three tight ends, three tailbacks and two fullbacks, while quarterback Jeff Krohn completed passes to nine different players vs. Oregon. Three wide receivers have topped the century mark in receiving yards four times this season, most recently Williams who caught four passes for 124 yards and two touchdowns vs. Oregon.
Noting Jeff Krohn Redshirt freshman Jeff Krohn turned in the best performance of his young career and the best performance in school history by a freshman vs. the Oregon Ducks, completing 21-of-34 passes for 432 yards and five touchdowns. His five touchdown strikes rank third in school history in a single game behind Mike Pagel who threw a school-record seven TDs vs. Stanford in 1981 and Danny White who had six vs. New Mexico in 1971. His 432-yard performance demolished ASU's single-game record for a freshman which was previously held by Ryan Kealy (292 yards, twice in 1997) and is the second-best all-time passing performance by a freshman in the Pac-10 Conference, trailing only Oregon State's Jonathan Smith's 469 yards vs. Washington in 1998. Krohn also put another notation in the ASU record book with his 90-yard touchdown pass to senior Richard Williams in the fourth quarter. The 90-yard strike was the fifth-longest pass reception in ASU history and the longest since Jeff Van Raaphorst completed a school-record 95-yarder to Aaron Cox vs. USC in 1985.
Krohn has notched a 5-3 record as ASU's starting quarterback. In ASU's 44-20 win over Utah State, he completed six of 10 attempts for 248 yards and four passing touchdowns, including 72- and 70-yard TD strikes to senior Richard Williams in his first two completions. At the time, Krohn's four TD passes were the most for a Sun Devil since fellow quarterback Ryan Kealy completed four scoring strikes against Arizona on Nov. 27, 1998. It marked the 18th time an ASU signal caller has thrown four TD passes in a game. While he missed games against UCLA and Cal after being diagnosed with mononucleosis, Krohn returned to action vs. Washington in relief of starter Griffin Goodman, completing 12 of 33 attempts for 170 yards, a TD strike to junior Todd Heap and two interceptions. In his first start back from his illness, Krohn completed 18 of 27 attempts for 214 yards at Washington State despite missing all of the second quarter with a mild concussion, while vs. USC, he completed 17-of-33 attempts for 150 yards before leaving in the third quarter with a deeply cut thumb on his throwing hand.
More on Krohn Already the holder of ASU's freshman single-game passing record, Jeff Krohn is just 30 yards short of the second-best single-season passing mark for a freshman. Ryan Kealy holds the school record for a Sun Devil in his freshman season with 2,137 passing yards in 1997, while Grady Benton is second with 1,707 yards in 1992. Krohn, whose father Jim quarterbacked the Arizona Wildcats from 1976-79, leads the Pac-10's top-ranked passing offense, completing 119-of-244 pass attempts for 1,677 yards and 12 touchdowns.
Passing Into the End Zone Sun Devil quarterbacks have thrown 21 touchdown passes in 11 regular-season games this year including 12 by redshirt freshman Jeff Krohn. Junior Donnie O'Neal and senior Richard Williams have each caught seven touchdown passes and need just two more to tie for fourth place on ASU's lists for single-season touchdown receptions. Morris Owens is fourth all time at ASU with nine TD grabs in 1973, while Doug Allen holds the school mark with 14 TD receptions in 1984.
Last year, the Sun Devils had just 14 TD passes all season, while Williams was last year's leading receiver catching just five TD passes all season. ASU's 21 touchdown passes are the most for the team since Jake Plummer threw 24 on the season in 1996, while the school single-season record is 29 by the 1981 squad.
Turnover TaleIn its last 42 games, if ASU wins or breaks even in the turnover battle, the Sun Devils are 22-4. In that same span, ASU is 1-15 when losing the turnover battle. During that span, the unexpected only happened against UCLA in 2000 (loss), Washington in 2000 (loss), USC in 2000 (loss), Washington State in 1999 (win) and Oregon in 1999 (loss). ASU is second in the Pac-10 and tied for 10th in the nation in turnover margin this season (+8). The Sun Devils had no turnovers in two of their games (Colorado State and Arizona) and won or broke even in the turnover battle in all but two games this season.
Heap Becomes ASU's Career-Leading Tight EndCombine junior Todd Heap's blond hair, hands of glue and nose for the football and you'll know why ASU head coach Bruce Snyder has called his tight end the 'Golden Retriever.' Heap has established himself as the best tight end in the Pac-10 and in ASU history, becoming the first Sun Devil tight end to earn first-team All-Pac-10 honors in 1999 and duplicating that honor in 2000. A 1999 third-team Associated Press All-American last year, Heap has been named a first-team All-American by NFL Draft Report, CNNSI.com and Gannett News Services so far this season andwas one of three finalists for the inaugural John Mackey Award which is presented to the best tight end in the country.
With five catches for 53 yards at Washington State, Heap became ASU's career leader in receptions by a tight end and now has 112 career receptions in three seasons, surpassing Ken Dyer's 88 receptions (1965-67). The junior had already captured the career mark in receiving yards vs. Washington on Oct. 14 and now has 1,658 yards in his career. He needs just one touchdown to tie Joe Petty (1970-72) for ASU's career record in that category as well with 10 TD catches in two-plus seasons.
Last year, Heap set single-season records for ASU tight ends with 55 catches and 832 yards receiving, while the junior has already moved into third this season with 45 catches for 617 yards and three TDs. He is just the ninth Sun Devil to catch 50 passes in a season and became the first tight end to lead ASU in receiving since Ryan McReynolds had 28 catches in 1988. Thirty-nine of his 55 receptions resulted in a first down or TD. He had career highs in receptions (8) at Notre Dame and receiving yards (170) against Arizona. He had three 100-yard games and had at least three receptions in all but two games in 1999 (he was sidelined by injury/illness in both).
CAREER TIGHT END RECEPTIONS Name (Years) No. Yds. TD 1. Todd Heap (1998-present) 112 1658 10 2. Ken Dyer (1965-67) 88 1365 7 3. Joe Petty (1970-72) 81 1352 11 4. Ron Wetzel (1979-82) 67 861 7 5. Ryan McReynolds (1987-90) 65 671 7 6. Kendrick Bates (1996-99) 63 732 4 7. Jeff Gallimore (1983-86) 54 519 5 8. Jerry Smith (1963-64) 51 747 7 9. Herman Harrison (1961-63) 50 753 8 Stein Koss (1983-86) 50 517 1
ASU Tight End Season Records Name Year Rec. Yds. TD 1. Todd Heap 1999 55 832 3 2. Don Kern 1983 49 502 1 3. Todd Heap 2000 45 617 3 4. Jerry Smith 1964 42 618 5 5. Ken Dyer 1967 39 654 4 6. Joe Petty 1971 36 577 6 7. Joe Petty 1972 31 522 4 8. Ken Dyer 1966 29 496 2 9. Ron Wetzel 1982 28 365 0 Ryan McReynolds 1988 28 271 5 Matt Nelson 1994 28 241 3
Top of the HeapThis year, junior Todd Heap leads the team in receiving despite facing double and triple coverage on virtually every play with 45 catches for 617 yards and three touchdowns. Of his 45 catches this year, 31 have resulted in a first down or a touchdown (68.9 percent). In the last seven games, 21 of his 31 catches have resulted in first down or touchdown with four others being a nine-yard catch in a drive that resulted in ASU's second touchdown vs. Washington State, nine- and 10-yard catches vs. the Ducks and an eight-yard catch that set up an ASU field goal at Arizona. Heap has caught a pass in 26 straight games (110 catches in that span).
Archie's BunkerThe Pac-10 Defensive Player of the Year, NFL Draft Report National Defensive Player of the Year and a first-team All-American, senior Adam Archuleta leads the Pac-10 in tackles with 119, an average of 10.8 tackles per game. Of those tackles, 72.3 percent are solo stops (86 of 119). Last season, Archuleta became the first Sun Devil since Scott Von der Ahe to record more than 100 tackles in a season with 111 and is now the first since Brett Wallerstedt (109 in 1990, 122 in 1991 and 119 in 1992) to top the century mark in tackles in consecutive seasons.
Leader of a linebacking corps tabbed the seventh-best in the nation by The Sporting News, he has paced the team in tackles in six of the past nine games (and second to fellow linebacker Solomon Bates in two others) and registered double figures in six of 10 games this year. Archuleta turned in a career-best 16 tackles at UCLA, a total which included 15 solos, and followed that up with 15 tackles (10 solos) vs. Oregon. He then matched that career high with 16 tackles vs. USC. He has had at least one tackle for loss in all but two of ASU's 11 games this year (USC only game without a TFL), including three for a loss of 20 yards at UCLA, and ranks 10th in the Pac-10 with 14 total TFL this season. Archuleta has had at least one tackle for loss in 23 of his last 28 games.
A first-team All-Pac-10 linebacker and ASU's defensive MVP last year, Archuleta recorded double-digit tackle efforts in six of his 11 games, leading ASU six times. Despite missing the season-opener with a hamstring injury, Archuleta ranked second in the Pac-10 with 10.2 tackles per game, trailing only Arizona's Marcus Bell (10.3). His 21 tackles for loss led the league and was the seventh-highest single-season total in ASU history. Since the Pac-10 began keeping track of TFL in 1990, he is only the second Sun Devil to lead the conference (Derrick Rodgers, 1996). In his career, Archuleta ranks fifth in ASU history with 53 tackles for loss.
ASU CAREER LEADERS--TACKLES FOR LOSS Name TFL Years 1. Bob Kohrs 58 1976-79 2. Shante Carver 57 1990-93 Al Harris 57 1975-78 4. Vernon Maxwell 56 1979-82 5. Adam Archuleta 53 1997-pres. 6. Scott Stephen 46 1983-86 7. Albrey Battle 32 1995-98 Pat Tillman 32 1994-97 9. Shawn Patterson 28 1984-87 10. Brett Wallerstedt 27 1989-92
In His CareerAdam Archuleta has 322 career tackles and would need 31 more this season to catch Bob Breuning (353, 1972-74) for fifth all-time at ASU, but the senior has already registered 195 solo tackles in his career, which ranks fifth all-time at ASU surpassing the mark of 192 by Mike Richardson, 1979-82. Archuleta has already etched his spot in the record book for single-season solo tackles and is fourth with 86 in his career. Brett Wallerstedt is third with 87 in 1991, while the school record for unassisted tackles in a season is 114 by Mark Tingstad (1988).
Setting the PaceJunior Tom Pace, a walk-on who was awarded a scholarship by head coach Bruce Snyder in the week before the USC game, leads the Sun Devil team in rushing, gaining 581 yards and five touchdowns on 155 attempts. He has also caught eight passes for 183 yards and a pair of touchdowns on the season.
While he was slowed by ankle and shoulder injuries at Stanford (25 yards on 10 carries), Pace turned in 70 yards and a touchdown on 21 carries as well as a 45-yard TD catch before leaving the USC game with an ankle injury. Pace scampered for 158 yards and a TD on 33 carries vs. Oregon and had a 69-yard TD catch and turned in 103 yards and a touchdown on 26 carries at Washington State, including crucial yardage in ASU's overtime drive.
Pace made his Sun Devil debut against Utah State with 65 yards on 16 carries and followed that up with 19 yards on eight carries at UCLA. He then fell just short of topping the century mark with 93 yards and a touchdown in 17 carries vs. Cal.
A 5-10, 195-pounder out of Mesa (Ariz.) High School, Pace played running back (under ASU offensive line coach George Yarno who was the offensive coordinator in Moscow from 1995-98) and returned kicks for the University of Idaho in 1996 before going on a two-year mission to Brazil. In 1996, he finished second on the Vandal team in rushing with 212 yards and two touchdowns in 41 carries (a team-leading average of 5.2 yards per carries). Even more impressive were his return numbers as he led the team and ranked among the best in the nation with 839 yards on 32 kickoff returns (26.2 ypr). After returning from his mission, Pace played one season at Ricks Junior College in Rexburg, Idaho, before the 22-year-old joined the Sun Devil squad the week before the Colorado State game.
The Century MarkIncluding back-to-back 100-yard rushing games by Tom Pace vs. Washington State and Oregon, the Sun Devils have had three rushing performances top the century mark this season. ASU is 232-41-5 (.844) all time when a player gains 100 yards or more, while the Sun Devils are 33-9 (.786) since Bruce Snyder's arrival in Tempe. Earlier this season, true freshman Mike Williams turned in a 143-yard showing against Colorado State to become the first true freshman to top the century mark since Mario Bates rushed for 161 yards against Arizona at home on Nov. 23, 1991.
Big PlaysASU's offense had been characterized by big plays this season, especially through the air. While the longest play in its first two games was a 21-yard run by junior Davaren Hightower in the season-opener against San Diego State, ASU has had 42 longer plays from scrimmage longer (34 pass, six rush) in the last nine.
More on Big PlaysAs a team, the Sun Devils are averaging 15.4 yards per catch to lead the Pac-10. Nine Sun Devils are averaging double figures in yards per reception.
Three Starters at QBThe Sun Devils have started three quarterbacks in 11 games this year with freshman Jeff Krohn missing action against UCLA and Cal due to mononucleosis and senior Ryan Kealy suffering a knee injury vs. UCLA. That trend isn't as out of the ordinary as it might seem since Arizona State has had three starters at quarterback three previous times in the last 10 years (Paul Justin, Kurt Lasher and Bret Powers in 1990, Troy Rauer, Grady Benton and Garrick McGee in 1992 and Ryan Kealy, Chad Elliott and Steve Campbell in 1998). ASU leads the Pac-10 Conference and is ranked 20th in the nation in passing offense at 266.8 passing yards per game despite the personnel changes.
Turning 50Arizona State's last two victories over Washington State have marked milestones for ASU head coach Bruce Snyder. ASU's Oct. 28 overtime victory over the Cougars marked the 54th Pac-10 victory for the Sun Devil mentor moving him into a tie with Washington's Jim Owens for 10th in career conference wins. Last season, ASU's 33-21 win at Sun Devil Stadium was his 50th victory at Arizona State and his 50th career win in Pac-10 conference play. Combining his record in Tempe and during a five-year stint at California, Snyder is 55-51-4 in conference games. He is just the 12th coach in the 84-year history of the league to plate 50 wins. The other 11 are: Terry Donahue, UCLA, 98 wins, Don James, Washington, 97, John McKay, USC, 70, Howard Jones, USC, 65, O.E. Hollingbery, WSU, 64, John Robinson, USC, 63, Larry Smith, Arizona, 63, Dick Tomey, Arizona, 60, Rich Brooks, Oregon, 56, Bruce Snyder, Arizona State, 55, Jim Owens, Washington, 54, James Phelan, Washington, 51.
Third-Down Defense The Sun Devils are third in the Pac-10 Conference in third-down defense, allowing their opponents to convert on just 31.4 percent of their third downs. Oregon leads the Pac-10 at 25.5 percent. Washington (Oct. 14) finished the game just 3-for-16 in third-down conversions and went 1-for-10 to start the game, not converting a third down until midway through the third quarter, while Oregon was just 3-of-13 vs. the Sun Devils on Oct. 28.
Forcing Fumbles In 11 games, the Sun Devils have forced 29 fumbles, 19 more than the team forced all last season (10), and have recovered 23. Sophomore Solomon Bates and freshman Terrell Suggs each have four to lead the team and tie for second in the Pac-10, while senior Adam Archuleta and junior Kurt Wallin have each forced three which is good for fifth in the Pac-10.
Pick Pockets Arizona State has picked off 13 passes this year with eight players getting into the action, most recently senior Nijrell Eason whose pick at Arizona was CNN's 'Play of the Day' for Nov. 24. Last year, the Sun Devils intercepted a total of 11 passes all season. The Sun Devils snagged three interceptions against Utah State and then again at Washington State, the most since picking off three against USC last year. With two interceptions against UCLA, ASU had at least one interception in its first four games. The 1998 team was the last to pick off at least one pass in four straight games when it had one in each of its last five games that season. Senior Nijrell Eason leads the team and is tied for third in the Pac-10 with four interceptions this year (one at SDSU, one vs. USU, one at UCLA, one vs. USC). Last year, Willie Daniel and Courtney Jackson paced the team with two interceptions each all season.
Walk-Ons Junior Tom Pace was awarded a scholarship by head coach Bruce Snyder in the week before the USC game, joining an impressive group of players who at least began their careers at ASU by walking on. Redshirt freshman Jeff Krohn and sophomore safety Patrick Wilson were awarded scholarships for the 2000-01 academic year earlier this season, while other players on the current squad who earned scholarships after walking on include senior linebacker Adam Archuleta, senior wide receivers Mike Aguirre and Brian Forth, junior offensive tackle Levi Jones and junior linebacker Elza Gennicks.
Lightning Strikes Twice If ASU's overtime victory at Washington State wasn't electrifying enough, the Sun Devils' trip home from Pullman, Wash., certainly was. About 60 miles north of Phoenix, the Sun Devils' team charter carrying players, coaches and support staff was hit by lightning. There was an extremely loud explosion, and bright lights surrounded the plane, startling everyone on board. No one on the flight knew what had happened, and most thought the plane had blown an engine or that there was an explosion of some kind. The interior lights went off for a bit as the flight attendants scrambled up and down the aisles. Several minutes later, there was another boom and flash of orange, yellow and red inside and outside the cabin as the plane was hit again.
After several minutes of not knowing what had happened, the senior attendant informed the team that the plane had been hit by lightning, twice! The pilot then came on the intercom and said that the plane was 40 miles outside of Phoenix and that he would have the team on the ground soon. When the plane finally touched down at Phoenix Sky Harbor Airport (it seemed like 4,000 miles, not 40), everyone on board cheered and clapped. After further examination, ASU's charter company grounded the plane due to damage to rivets in the fuselage.
ASU Retires Mike Haynes' NumberMike Haynes, a two-time All-American cornerback at Arizona State from 1972-75 and a member of the Pro Football Hall of Fame, had his Sun Devil No. 40 retired in ASU's game vs. USC Nov. 4. Haynes' number becomes the fourth retired at ASU. Like the trio of retirees before him, Haynes' name and number will adorn the face of the press box at Sun Devil Stadium. Senior linebacker Adam Archuleta, who currently wears No. 40, will be allowed to retain the number through the 2000 season.
In his ASU career, Haynes was a three-time All-Western Athletic Conference selection. As a junior in 1974, he led the nation with 11 interceptions, second-best all-time at ASU.During his senior campaign, the Sun Devils were a perfect 12-0 and finished second in the wire service polls. The New England Patriots selected Haynes with the fifth overall pick in the 1976 NFL Draft. He went on to play in nine Pro Bowls, the second-most by any ASU player, and earn two Super Bowl rings with the Oakland Raiders.
Upon his graduation in 1951, Wilford 'Whizzer' White's No. 33 became the first number retired at ASU. Bobby Mulgado joined him in 1958 when his No. 27 was honored. In 1997, White's son, Danny, became the third when his No. 11 was retired.
'Half-Season' All-AmericansJunior tight end Todd Heap and senior linebacker Adam Archuleta were both honored in the CNNSI.com 'Half-Season' All-America team. Heap earned first-team honors, while Archuleta was a second-team selection on the list which recognizes the top players in the country at the halfway point of the season.
True FreshmenWhile defensive end Terrell Suggs became just the second true freshman in school history to start the first game of the year for the Sun Devils at San Diego State, he and tailback Mike Williams both started against Colorado State and Utah State, marking the first time since 1995 that the Sun Devils have had a pair of freshmen in the starting lineup. That year, ASU had two freshmen starters in three games including wide receivers Kenny Mitchell and Ricky Boyer vs. UCLA (11/4) and at California (11/11) and Boyer and wide receiver Lenzie Jackson vs. Oregon State (9/23).
Suggs is in pretty good company as the only other Sun Devil true freshman to start the first game of the season was wide receiver John Jefferson in 1974. A four-time All-Western Athletic Conference selection and a consensus All-American in 1977, Jefferson (who changed his last name from Washington to Jefferson following his freshman campaign) went onto a successful NFL career, being selected as a first-round draft pick of the San Diego Chargers (14th pick overall) and appearing in four Pro Bowls with San Diego and the Green Bay Packers. In Bruce Snyder's tenure at ASU, 12 true freshmen have started games, although none until Suggs made his starting debut in the season opener. Six true freshmen have seen action so far this season (Suggs, fullbacks Mike Waddell and Mike Karney and tailbacks Mike Williams, Skyler Fulton and Derick Arnold). Last year, four true freshmen saw action (Solomon Bates, Josh Amobi, Mike Barth and Machtier Clay.)
Recruiting ClassThe Sun Devils are benefitting from a recruiting class that ranks among the best in ASU history. The 2000 recruiting class has been ranked in the top 13 nationally and among the two or three best in the Pac-10. SuperPrep Magazine listed ASU's recruiting class as the ninth-best in the nation and the best in the Pac-10.
Forth, Aguirre Earn Academic All-District HonorsSenior wide receivers Mike Aguirre and Brian Forth were honored last week for their hard work in the classroom when they were named to the 2000 Verizon Academic All-District VIII Football Team.
Aguirre, a Pac-10 representative on the National Student-Athlete Advisory Committee for 2000-01, received first-team honors and is on the national ballot for Academic All-America honors which will be announced Dec. 5. A history major from Mesa, Ariz., Aguirre graduated during the spring with a 3.42 GPA. Forth, a Yorba Linda, Calif. native, earned second-team honors. Forth graduated last spring with a 3.50 GPA. and a major in marketing. He has interned for the Sun Devil Sports Network, and his 'Forth and Goal' articles - providing an insider view of the ASU football season - have been a regular attraction on the Sun Devil website this year.
Both the first and second team honorees were voted on and selected by members of the College of Sports Information Directors of America (CoSIDA) within the District VIII states of Alaska, Arizona, California, Hawai'i, Nevada, Oregon, Utah and Washington, and the province of British Columbia.
Good CitizenSenior wide receiver Mike Aguirre was recently named to the 2000 American Football Coaches Association Good Works Team. The team is made up of student-athletes who successfully balance academics and athletics and go above and beyond in volunteerism and community service. The AFCA selected 11 players from NCAA Division I-A institutions to its Good Works Team.
An honorable-mention Academic All-Pac-10 selection in each of the last two seasons, Aguirre was one of the 17 members of the ASU Athletics Director Search Committee appointed by ASU President Lattie F. Coor this summer. He was the ASU Student-Athlete Advisory Council Chairman in 1999-2000 and will serve as the Pac-10 Conference representative on the National Student-Athlete Advisory Council in 2000-01.