Positions Grades: Utah vs Arizona State

Grading out the position groups after the devastating loss to Arizona State

Quarterback: D-
We can't put it all on Travis. The offensive line was as effective as the Obamacare website and that makes it hard on a QB. He did run/scramble well, but 6 of 21 for 121 yards and 2 late 4th quarter picks? C'mon. His head is wrecked right now.

Running Back: C-
Why didn't we see more Kelvin York? While he didn't put up big stats, York was still the best runner on Saturday and blocked better than the other backs. Poole didn't have this best day, but the line, and the lack of a passing game can be blamed for that as well. A combined 29 carries for 82 yards isn't terrible, but that's still only 2.8 yards per carry. No catches out of the backfield.

Wide Receiver and Tight End: C-
Two receivers caught balls. TWO!!!!! The Sun Devil corners did a good job, but the inefficiencies in the passing game were mostly due to Wilson and the offensive line. Dres did what he could with four grabs, a touchdown, and the long grabs in the fourth quarter, but they really locked him down. This is mostly an incomplete grade.

Offensive Line: F
Yuck. In every phase, it was terrible. You have to wonder how a team could have such a bad performance against USC, have a bye week, and then play just as bad in their next game. Changes need to be made. The one bright spot? Penalties were minimal.

Defensive Line: A
If there were any doubts as to whether or not Trevor Reilly was an All Pac 12 guy, he smashed those on Saturday. 9 tackles, 2.5 for loss with a sack and a half will get the job done. When he wasn't bringing someone down in the backfield, Reilly was in Taylor Kelly's face. Nate had a tremendous game as well with 8 tackles including 1.5 for loss. Throw in Jacoby Hale (who played a lot of rush end) with 8 tackles, 1.5 for loss, and 1.5 sacks, and you have unreal production from the ends. Palepoi and Tuipulotu owned the interior of ASU's line for 3 quarters.

Linebackers B
Jason Whittingham was everywhere with 14 tackles, 2.5 for loss, and sack. Hale and Reilly played both end and linebacker, and both were studs. Norris didn't do a ton on Saturday as ASU seemed to go away from him.

Cornerback: B+
Keith McGill made more money on Saturday. He shutdown everyone who lined up across from him. When you have more pass breakups than tackles, you had a good day. If only McGill had held on to one of those 'should have been' picks. Thomas looked much better than Orphey in getting the start this week. He's a much better tackler (save the final touchdown) and should be the option going forward. Honeycutt was solid on the blitz throughout.

Safety: B-
ASU didn't go deep a ton and the line and linebackers did a lot of work upfront, so the safeties didn't have a ton of work. Eric Rowe was very good until the final quarter and Michael Walker continued to show that he's the team's best safety.

Special Teams: B-
Andy Phillips looked like he has regained his groove knocking in both of his field goal attempts with one coming from 43 and the other from 51. Geoff Norwood had a nice 31 yard punt return, but the Utes didn't cover kickoffs very well, allowing a 28 yarder and a 44 yarder.

Coaching: C
The defensive gameplan was awesome for the first 45 minutes. Then they got conservative and ASU made it look easy. The offensive gameplan was conservative from the beginning, and turned into Rand Paul in the fourth quarter with. The special teams gaffe by Jay Hill that forced Utah to burn a timeout was inexcusable.

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