Changes are coming and judging from what we saw in the second half of the football season, that’s a good thing for Arizona State.
Including their MAACO Las Vegas Bowl loss to Boise State, the Devils gave up an average of 40 points per contest over their final five games.
Defensive coordinator Craig Bray is out.
In are not one but two defensive coordinators, working under first-year head coach Todd Graham who came over after just one season at Pittsburgh.
One of those new coordinators his Chris Ball who held the same position the last three seasons at Washington State.
He promises you’ll see a much different defense this fall compared to what Sun Devil fans suffered through as ASU lost their final five games to finish the season 6-7.
“We’re going to attack,” Ball explained to Brad Cesmat on “Big Guy on Sports” Friday. “We’re definitely going to be explosive. It’s going to be an exciting brand of football. We’re going to be smart.”
Playing smart is something the Devils must improve. One of Erickson’s biggest downfalls was his lack of discipline, particularly on defense where ASU hurt themselves countless times during his tenure in Tempe with silly personal foul and unsportsmanlike penalties.
Some close to the program wonder if Graham and his staff can competitively recruit in the Pac-12 with perennial powers Oregon, USC, and most recently Stanford, but Ball says the university sells itself.
“When you walk into a [high] school and you’ve got the ASU logo on it, it speaks very loud. You can go anywhere in the country and kids are going to be interested.”
He says he ASU provides a great opportunity for himself and the other new assistants working under Graham.
“I think this is a great job,” Ball told Cesmat. “I think you can win a national championship here. I think it’s set up for that.”
The Devils are tentatively set to open their season August 30th against NAU at Sun Devil Stadium.