The Arizona State Sun Devils kick off the season on Thursday night against the Southern Utah Thunderbirds and hope to start the season 1-0.
This will be the last ASU game before sports betting launches on September 9, meaning bettors will be able to bet on the Devils’ next game, which will take place on Saturday, September 11, against UNLV. But with Daily Fantasy Sports live in Arizona, those in the state can play along with ASU on Thursday night using the DFS app on FanDuel or DraftKings.
ASU usually starts off the season with a pretty easy game and they are the clear favorite for this game with BetMGM listing the Sun Devils at -44.5. And no, that isn’t a typo. The Devils are expected to win the game easily, but there are still some players to keep an eye out for on the Thunderbirds.
Southern Utah Thunderbirds Preview
The Thunderbirds have only won four games in the last two years and lost its first game of the season last week against San Jose State. Quarterback Justin Miller went 15 of 29 with no touchdowns or interceptions in the 45-14 loss. But don’t let that fool you. Miller threw five touchdowns against NAU last season and has 15 touchdowns and over 1700 yards in just six games.
One player that could be trouble for the Devils is Southern Utah’s Kaho’ohanohano-Davis. In just six games, he has seven sacks and 57 tackles. And the Thunderbirds’ defense did stand firm in the second half of the San Jose State game, limiting the team to just seven points in the half. But, he is the only pass rusher threat, so if ASU can stop him, it shouldn’t be a problem for ASU’s quarterback, Jayden Daniels.
ASU Sun Devils Preview
Of course, we are all going to be looking at quarterback Jayden Daniels. It is his second year under offensive coordinator, Zak Hill, so this could be one of Daniels’ best years. Especially with Herm Edwards still leading the team as head coach.
It will also help that Daniels has a dynamic trio at the running back position. DeaMonte Trayanum, Rachaad White, and Daniyel Ngata could be trouble for Southern Utah’s defense.
White racked up 420 rushing yards in 42 attempts last year, averaging 10.0 yards per carry. He also had six touchdowns in four games.
ASU’s defense is full of veterans, even though they gave up too many yards last season. And with Jermayne Lole’s season-ending injury, it could hurt the Sun Devils this season. But luckily they have plenty of talent on their roster to fill in the holes. Shannon Forman has been with ASU since 2017, so we will be looking at the experienced player to lead the defense this season. Tyler Johnson will also be a defensive player to track. He had five sacks in just four games last year. Add in LSU transfer Travez Moore, and the Devils could be putting a lot of pressure on Southern Utah’s quarterback.
How To Watch/Listen To The ASU Game
- Date: Thursday, September 2
- Time: 7:30 PM MST
- Location: Sun Devil Stadium in Tempe, AZ
- TV: Pac-12 Network