Wouldn’t you know the 2012 version of the Territorial Cup would turn out to be a wild affair?
Arizona State and Arizona always have heated, yet entertaining games, and this years contest was no different.
Down 27-17 heading to the fourth quarter, the Sun Devils decided to kick it into another gear, scoring 24 in the final frame to blow past the Wildcats 41-34.
The win gives the Sun Devils bragging rights for a year, and more importantly, it gives them a 7-5 record on the season (same as the Wildcats), which should sweeten the bowl pot just a bit for them.
“I want to do it right this time,” Graham said. “This is my last stop. These kids had a choice, to buy in or not, and they did. This was a good game.”
It was the Ka’Deem Carey show pretty much all night, as the Wildcat running back ran 25 times for 172 yards and one touchdown. A great majority of his yards came early on, when it seemed like Arizona State’s defense had no answer for him.
Carey would go in and out for a good portion of the second half, which slowed down his momentum, but not Arizona’s offense as a whole.
For the game, the Wildcats had 522 yards of offense, 292 of that on the ground. The Sun Devils had 460 yards overall, 269 of it from their running game, which was led by junior Marion Grice. Grice had 156 yards and three touchdowns on just 18 carries.
Quarterback Taylor Kelly looked very poised overall, going 16-of-29 for 191 yards.
Kelly said he kept his teammates up on the sidelines, even when things looked bleak heading into the final 15 minutes.
“I kept pacing the sidelines, telling my guys to keep the intensity up and stay focused,” Kelly said. “The game isn’t over until the fourth quarter clock hits 0:00. We had to keep grinding and our guys did that and pulled the energy to get the win.”
One of the big keys to victory for Arizona State was its play defensively. They intercepted Wildcat quarterback Matt Scott three times on the night, coming up big when they had to.
“Turnovers are huge,” linebacker Brandon Magee said. “When we get a turnover, the offense has to capitalize, and that is exactly what we did. All I can say is that I am so proud of all the interceptions and fumbles that we caused.”