The 2013 schedule for Arizona State football looks daunting.
The Sun Devils will face three teams that were featured in BCS bowl games last year, including both Rose Bowl teams and the National Championship runner-up.
Long gone are the days of two to three light games to ease into the schedule, as the Sun Devils welcome Wisconsin to Sun Devil Stadium in Week 2 and then travel to take on the Pac-12 Champion Stanford Cardinal in Week 3.
The buzz around head coach Todd Graham and the future of the Sun Devil program is huge. It begins with the Pat Tillman Pac-12 Defensive Player of the Year, Will Sutton, returning to play his senior year, and it continues with the solid National Signing Day class of 27 new recruits, including three early enrollees that will participate in the Maroon and Gold Spring Game on April 13.
If the Devils are going to be the best, they are going to have to beat the best, and ASU Vice President for University Athletics Steve Patterson couldn't be happier:
With the loaded non-conference schedule and the always tough Pac-12, I think our football team has one of the marquee schedules in the nation. I'm looking forward to the chance to prove ourselves against some of the toughest teams in the country, and this is yet another reason for Sun Devil fans to be excited about the 2013 season.
Here is my breakdown of the 2013 schedule for the Arizona State Sun Devils along with predictions for each contest.