Sun Devil defense sets the tone

After an early bye week Arizona State came out ready to play against the Louisiana-Monroe Warhawks defeating them, 38-14. Saturday's competition began by the Sun Devils taking control as soon as they hit the field with Omar Bolden returning the kickoff for an 89-yard touchdown.

The 5-10 junior set the tempo early and it allowed the offensive group to take the field with a 7-0 lead, relieving some of the pressure for his teammates.

To wrap up a successful first quarter, Bolden again contributed to the Sun Devil's success with an interception of Louisiana-Monroe's quarterback, Trey Revell.

Saturday was a day for several upsets in college football. The Washington Huskies upset the #3 USC Trojans today to shake up the Pac-10. In a matter of weeks the Sun Devils will face these two teams and many other challenging ones.

"I think we're just focused on the game at hand," commented linebacker Travis Goethel. "Other things happen around us but I don't think we're worried about that at all."

Agreeing with his teammate, Bolden said "I agree but once I saw it, I was reminded that we can't slack off either because upsets happen. There were a couple of upsets today so it was just more motivation for us to be more focused and handle our business."

Having confidence in their team, the Sun Devils came ready to play. As usual, the defensive group did their job to enable the offense to score as much as it did.

"I think we did our job, exactly what were supposed to do coming in," Bolden stated. "We made a couple plays and I didn't think we gave up any big plays so I think we're on the right track especially for next week."

With such gifted players like Vontaze Burfict, consistently making big plays, the rest of the defense feels the urge to go out and do the same. With a teammate with such intensity on the field, it would make sense to think the rest of the unit would strive to perform the same way.

"It kind of makes us all want to get out there and make plays as a whole defense," admitted Goethel. "As a defense you want to get back out there and make a play too, so it gets us all pumped to make plays."

Burfict wasn't the only player to make big plays during Saturday's matchup. Travis Goethel wrapped up the first half of play with an interception and return of 34 yards.

"Their receiver basically dropped it," Goethel said. "It fell right into my hands so it was kind of just luck. I was where I was supposed to be but it was just luck."

The interception looked like it was going to culminate in a touchdown by Goethel until he and his teammate, Mike Nixon accidentally collided, forcing him to fall. Although the teammates were disappointed, there will be other opportunities.

"I saw the end zone but you never know, he was just trying to find a block for me," Goethel commented. "There's nothing you can really do about that. I should have had better vision."

How does a teammate make up for such a collision?

"He's got to take me out to dinner now," Goethel joked.


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