Carpenter Looks to Rid Off Distractions

The game of football is just as mental as it is physical. Yes, that's another worn out cliché but a notion that ASU quarterback Ryan Carpenter has experienced in a strong way.

"It's (the quarterback position) one of those rare positions that might be the hardest position in all of sports," said Rudy Carpenter. "You have to know of what everyone is doing at all times and if something gets in your head everything can get messed up. That might have had happened to me these past few weeks."

It has definitely been a struggle for the sophomore quarterback. In a loss to California two weeks ago, he threw for four interceptions, two of which were returned for scores. Last week against Oregon, he completed just six passes for 33 yards. Carpenter knows that he can reverse his fortunes quite quickly, and equates it to a play in his other favorite sport. "Quarterbacking is like hitting in baseball above the neck," he stated. "One big play or one big series is what gets everyone going. Maybe it's like a hitter in baseball where all he needs is a hit to get on base. That might be very well what it takes."

Carpenter noted that besides improving on his mechanics, he is also working on trusting his wideouts to make the catch when he delivers the ball. "That's the thing I was lacking in the first few weeks and I'm getting better at that this week in practice," he said.

The Sun Devil signal caller seems to have put his struggles in the rearview mirror, and is eager to face one of the best teams in the nation on the road. "Last year we had them down and out," he recalled. "USC is a great team and they battled back (to win). "I'm just happy to go back home to California and play in the Coliseum. I'm very excited for that."

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