Arizona State University fell well short of its bid to appear in the team's first appearance in the Rose Bowl game since 1997.
Stanford beat ASU 38-14, in a classic case of déjà vu.
ASU lost the regular season match-up between the two, 42-28 on September 21, and this game was remarkably similar.
Stanford had very little trouble moving down the field, especially in the rushing game, while ASU was the exact opposite.
The first time around, Marion Grice was the Sun Devils' leading rusher with 50 yards. This time, it was DJ Foster, with 62 yards. Although Foster was injured in this game (Grice already was out with an injury) one of his rushes was for 51 yards. Going down ASU's running-back totem pole, Deantre Lewis had 36 yards on 21 carries, and De'Marieya Nelson had 10 yards on five carries.
Again, Stanford got out to the early lead, and again, the kicking game suffered. Alex Garoutte's opening kickoff for ASU was a pooch kick to keep the ball away from Stanford's Ty Montgomery, but we're guessing the objective was not a 27-yard kickoff, giving Stanford the ball at its own 38. Garoutte would later follow up with a 16-yard punt.
Foster was really the only guy keeping ASU in the game, but he suffered some sort of gruesome knee injury that involved his leg bending a way that it's not supposed to. He tried to return to the game, but just wasn't the same. Foster, a Scottsdale native, accounted for both ASU touchdowns, one on the aforementioned 51-yard rush, and another on a screen pass that was good for 65 yards.
The defensive tandem of linebacker Carl Bradford and tackle Will Sutton just weren't the one-two punch they have been all season long, and except for a few motivated defensive stands, Stanford had no problems on offense.
ASU will still get into a decent bowl this season, but it won't be the bowl fans had in mind.
Keep Phoenix New Times Free... Since we started Phoenix New Times, it has been defined as the free, independent voice of Phoenix, and we would like to keep it that way. Offering our readers free access to incisive coverage of local news, food and culture. Producing stories on everything from political scandals to the hottest new bands, with gutsy reporting, stylish writing, and staffers who've won everything from the Society of Professional Journalists' Sigma Delta Chi feature-writing award to the Casey Medal for Meritorious Journalism. But with local journalism's existence under siege and advertising revenue setbacks having a larger impact, it is important now more than ever for us to rally support behind funding our local journalism. You can help by participating in our "I Support" membership program, allowing us to keep covering Phoenix with no paywalls.