Hargis Improving After Position Switch

The Sun Devils' offensive line struggled to say the least last season and one of the prescribed remedies for the current campaign was to move sophomore Jon Hargis from the defensive line to left tackle. Hargis had to go from rushing Pac-10 quarterbacks to protecting the blind side of one of the conference's best signal callers.

"Defense is a totally different position," said Hargis, "You have one thing to think about, instead of four of five."

Hargis stated that he has certainly had his highs and lows this season, but he knew that was going to be the case. He tries to put the struggles behind him and just focus on improving every day.

"I've had my good plays and bad plays" described Hargis, "more bad plays than good plays. It is all a learning curve and how you take it.

"If you focus on what you are doing bad, instead of good parts, it is getting better. Just seeing the progress I've gotten since the first game, I'm pretty satisfied for where I'm at but have a long ways to go."

Hargis is one of a few new members to the offensive line this season and he says for such a young group, he is happy with the way they have played.

"I thought we have performed pretty well, for a young group," claimed Hargis. "Especially the last few weeks with the injuries."

The injuries have really put pressure on the offensive line this season, but they haven't missed a beat.

"We just have to deal with it," said Hargis, "Everyone was confident with Zach (Schlink) coming in, unfortunately he got hurt. We all knew Garth (Gerhart) and we were all confident in him and be a key role on the line."

In fact, the run game has improved since all of the injuries and line changes have occurred. Hargis doesn't know why the run game has suddenly got on track, because he feels the line was opening up holes all season.

"Nothing really (has changed)," explained Hargis, "I think we just came off the ball harder the last few games. Sometimes the running backs missed their holes.

"I don't think the running game has been struggling that much. From a line standpoint, we weren't missing our blocks; we were making all of them. I don't know how it got back on track, but I'm glad."

Another improvement for the line this season has been keeping Rudy Carpenter upright. ASU has allowed 28 sacks this season, while not great; it is still an improvement from the 55 it surrendered last season.

An improved run game improved has definitely helped ASU to win two straight after losing six in a row. Hargis says the team isn't taking anything for granted at 4-6, but winning certainly fired them up and boosted confidence.

"We are never satisfied with a win. We beat two teams that are a little less," admitted Hargis, "Washington is a better team than their record shows, Washington State is going through a tough time right now. With those two wins we got our confidence up."

But for now the focus is on UCLA and the last game at Sun Devil Stadium. Hargis knows that ASU must send the seniors out the right way with a victory in their last contest in Tempe.

"The talk was a few weeks ago," recalled Hargis. "They told the seniors after the way we played against Oregon, ‘seniors you have two games left, how are going to close it out?' The team took that to heart and we want to send them out with a win at Sun Devil Stadium."

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