Todd Graham discussed ASU's scrimmage from Friday and more after the team's Monday practice

Arizona State coach Todd Graham spoke with reporters after the team's seventh practice of spring football on Monday. Here's what he had to say on a variety of subjects.

On ASU's first true scrimmage of the spring from Friday after watching film:

"Up front, I think we're being pretty simple but lots of good signs as far as running the football. On the other side, giving up too much run yardage. We're not doing a lot of movement, being pretty basic too, which helps with that. The physicality has been really good too. It's been back and forth. I thought we took care of the ball really well, didn't turn the football over. In the secondary, we have some guys who are missed, but getting better, didn't give up any cheap ones. Just trying to focus on those things that we're trying to get better on, most importantly, who are we? Really focus on our relentless tempo and effort. I think we're much faster, our tempo is faster. We're running the ball, our guys are giving great effort. I like the synergy, it's been great synergy for seven practices now."

On where the team is at midway through spring ball relative to his expectations going in:

"We're right where we need to be. You've got people that just got here that obviously have lot of things they need to do to catch up, but as far as the overall team and the unit, I like where we're at. The things we set out to do is to be faster, we talk about speed, physicality and finish, and we wanted to be faster with our tempo and guys giving an unbelievable effort on and off the field. We're doing that better than we ever have, and so I like that. I like that guys every day are laying it on the line for the team. I like the attitude and effort that they're giving. And then I think we're getting better. We've got a lot of work to do. The areas where we've got to replace a lot of people are progressing along at a good pace."

On the defensive line's capability up front:

"If you asked me, are we better at our individual pass rush than we were last year? Yes we are. I think JoJo is a guy who can beat 1-on-1 pass rush, I think Smallwood has been outstanding as far as his progression. And then some newcomers like Crump have looked really good rushing the passer. I think Malik Lawal has done some good things. Ami, Smallwood, JoJo, Renell Wren has been better rushing the passer. Obviously Jalen Bates, that's his strong point, we've got to get him better against the run. I think all those guys are a little better in their technique. We should be but we'll wait and see."

On getting Cameron Smith back this year at wideout:

"He had more explosive plays than anybody on the offense. That's the big thing is his ability to have one play touchdowns. He had more explosive plays than Jaelen did. That was obviously something we missed tremendously last year. He doesn't say much, works hard, a guy who has had a really good spring."


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