Game Analysis - Arizona State

Another week and another bad offensive performance for the Huskies. The weather definitely didn't help things, but in a game where even a below-average output on the offensive side of the ball would have won the game, Washington was unable to get anything going until very late in the contest. Here's a look at what went right and what went wrong in UW's 24-10 loss to ASU at Husky Stadium...

Turning Point/Play of the Game: While Washington’s offense struggled mightily for pretty much the entire game, after a botched hold that resulted in no points for the Sun Devils when they were inside the Husky 20, the Dawg offense marched down the field behind the running of Shaq Thompson (7 carries for 47 yards) and Deontae Cooper (4 carries for 26 yards) to the Arizona State two. However, on 3rd-and-goal from the two, the Huskies, who had gashing ASU up the middle the entire drive, decided to pitch the ball to Thompson who was stopped for a four-yard loss. If the Huskies score on that play, the entire tone of the game changes, but instead they had to settle for a 26-yard field goal by Cameron Van Winkle which tied the game at 10 apiece with just over seven minutes left on the clock.

Offensive Player of the Game: Thompson had 98 yards on 21 carries and generally was the only consistent threat for the Huskies on offense.

Defensive Player of the Game: DE Hau’oli Kikaha. I could have gone one of two ways on this one, but seeing as he set the career-sack record and tied the season-sack total during the game, it has to go to Kikaha who also chipped in with six tackles and four tackles-for-loss to along with his two sacks. The senior now has 31.5 sacks, overtaking Daniel Teo Nesheim’s 30, in his career and 14.5 on the season which ties Jason Chorak’s total in 1996.

Handouts to the standouts: Cooper was solid carrying the ball in the limited carries he got, finishing with 70 yards on 11 carries. He also had two receptions for 16 yards as well; Kendyl Taylor had a couple of nice catches on the night that he turned into first downs, hauling in three receptions for 30 yards; Hudson had a huge night, probably his most prolific as a Husky, posting 10 tackles, two sacks and two tackles-for-loss; John Timu had a pick six, giving the Huskies new life, late in the third quarter while also racking up eight tackles and a forced fumble; Keishawn Bierria got the start on defense in place of Shaq and finished with six tackles, one sack and two tackles-for-loss; Danny Shelton had eight tackles and half a tackle-for-loss.

Stats of the game: The two most important stats that seemed to stick out are three turnovers – two interceptions, one fumble – while the Huskies only forced one – the Timu interception. The other is Washington’s 2-for-14 effort on third down. Now, ASU wasn’t much better (3 of 15), but if the Huskies could have converted more first downs, it likely would have changed the field position battle and could have made a huge difference in the game.

Needs work: There shouldn’t be any question – the offense. This team needs to figure things out on that side of the ball before this season gets away from them. As I’ve noted before, in order to win in the Pac 12, you have to score points on offense.

Bottom line: If the Huskies get any modicum of decent offensive production, they likely win this game by 10 or more points. The defense is playing well enough for the Huskies to win out the rest of the way, but the offense has to give them more than three points in a game. Chris Petersen has already said that Cyler Miles will start against Colorado next week and the hope has to be that he can be the spark the offense needs to get more points on the board. Top Stories