2011 Arizona State Sun Devils College Football Preview

Arizona State Sun Devils
2010 record:  6-6 overall, 4-5 conference
2010 Bowl Game:  N/A
2010 ATS:  8-2-2
2010 O/U:  8-4
Returning starters:  20 total (11 on offense, 9 on defense)

Arizona State scored 85 points in the final two games of the 2010 season

Over the month of August, our team of writers will be previewing the top teams heading into an exciting 2011 campaign.  The college football handicappers at Maddux Sports are also preparing and have season-long packages readily available for clients.

Let’s take a look at a program that is expected to make some major noise in the Pac-12 South division this year under head coach Dennis Erickson.


Arizona State returns the most starters of any Pac-10 team with 19 returnees, among those is junior quarterback Brock Osweiler.  He came up with big performances in the final two games, completing 49 passes for 647 yards and five touchdowns.

Headlining the returners on offense is a dynamic duo in the Sun Devil backfield, junior Cameron Marshall and sophomore Deantre Lewis.  The two combined for 1,326 yards and 13 touchdowns in 2011.

Marshall is undoubtedly the featured back, leading the program with 787 yards on 150 carries and rushing for nine touchdowns.  He is a powerful runner with 4.4 speed that defenses must account for each week.

Receiving targets are plentiful and led by senior wideouts Gerell Robinson, Mike Willie and Aaron Pflugrad, combining for 94 catches, 1,158 yards and 13 touchdowns in 2010.

Only one Pac-12 team returns its entire starting five from a season ago and the unit will be anchored by senior center Garth Gerhart, as he has started 22 of 26 games he has appeared in.


The 2010 Sun Devil defense led the Pac-10 in rushing defense, allowing 120.2 yards per game.  It marked the second consecutive season that the program led the conference in defense against the run.

Leading the charge for the defense is preseason All-American junior linebacker Vontaze Burfict, who will try to compensate for the unit losing two of its three best defensive players over the summer.

Senior safeties Eddie Elder and Clint Floyd will be in charge of leading a secondary, as the group will be challenged on a weekly basis with quality signal-callers littering Pac-12 rosters this year.

Special Teams

A huge loss is found in the kicking game with the graduation of first-team All-American and Lou Groza Award winner Thomas Weber.  The job is likely to be handed to redshirt freshman Alex Garoutte.

Another solid contributor is no longer found in punting situations, as Trevor Hankins has left the program after ranking fourth in the conference with a 44.6-yard average.  At this time, Josh Hubner is listed as his replacement after a solid spring performance.

Arizona State led the Pac-10 in kickoff returns last year, averaging 27.5 yards per return, while returning three for scores.  No other team in the conference had more than one kick return for a touchdown.

Against the Spread

Few teams were better against-the-spread last year, posting a 8-2-2 ATS mark, including a 2-0 ATS record when playing as a home underdog.

Bet On

Arizona State is likely to be getting points when traveling to face USC on Sept. 24, which should be money in the bank due to covering four of the last five meetings.  Check the college football lines page closely during Week 4 of the season.

Fade Away

Don’t even think about playing the Sun Devils in Eugene against the Ducks on Oct. 15, as the team is 0-9 ATS as underdogs of two or more points in the second of back-to-back road games.

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