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Predicting Each Loss on Arizona State Football's 2013 CFB Schedule

Head coach Todd Graham needs to get the Sun Devils prepared for one of the nation's toughest 2013 schedules.
Head coach Todd Graham needs to get the Sun Devils prepared for one of the nation's toughest 2013 schedules.Mark J. Rebilas-USA TODAY Sports
Robby BakerContributor IIIAugust 9, 2013

Arizona State has high hopes for 2013 and if all goes according to plan, they will be the champions of the Pac-12 South.

While every college football team enters the season with hopes of finishing undefeated, few teams actually accomplish this feat.

ASU is no different, as they know an undefeated season, coupled with their tough schedule, would mean they have a shot at the BCS National Championship.

It is highly unlikely that ASU runs the table however.

A best-case scenario sees ASU ending the year 10-2 and champions of the Pac-12 South. Realistically, ASU could finish with a 9-3 record and should be in the hunt for the South crown. If they don't sustain significant injuries and play up to their expectations, this is doable.

ASU's likely losses next year will come against Wisconsin, Stanford and UCLA.

 

Week 2 vs. Wisconsin

ASU will take the field in Week 2 donning their all-black uniforms amid high hopes and expectations.

The Sun Devils will be looking to avenge their one-point loss to the Badgers from 2010 and, with a win, could announce their legitimacy to the nation. 

Wisconsin is going through a period of transition, as they lost their star running back and head coach in the offseason. Wisconsin has been to three-straight Rose Bowls however, and provides a major matchup problem for ASU.

Wisconsin is a power team; they like to pound the ball on the ground and run between the tackles.

The Badgers averaged 236.4 yards per game on the ground last year while only throwing for 156.9 yards.

ASU's run defense was suspect at times last year, as the team allowed, on average, more than 200 yards on the ground per game.

This sets up poorly for ASU, as they like to play fast, aggressive football. Wisconsin will want to slow down the game and if they can run the ball, they can control the tempo.

ASU will rely heavily on their quick tempo in 2013, but if Wisconsin can slow them down, ASU won't be able to pull out the win.

Score: Wisconsin 28 ASU 21

 

Week 3 @ Stanford

Not many teams are envious of ASU's 2013 schedule.

One week removed from playing the reigning Big Ten Champs, ASU heads to Palo Alto to take on Stanford in a game that will be ASU's toughest test all year.

Stanford knows how to slow down and beat an up-tempo team as they upset Oregon on the road just last season. They have a great defense and are a very disciplined team lead by head coach David Shaw.

Last season, Stanford had the best scoring defense and best overall defense in the Pac-12. The Cardinal held their opponents to only 17 points per game.

This game is another matchup problem for ASU because Stanford prefers to slow the game down and could take away ASU's strength much like Wisconsin.

The Cardinal can slow down ASU and take them out of rhythm.

If ASU can maintain their fast pace and limit their turnovers, they have a chance at pulling the upset. The sad truth for Sun Devil fans is that Stanford will make moving the ball a nightmare for ASU and will take a win from the Sun Devils.

Score: ASU 10 Stanford 24

 

Week 11 @ UCLA

ASU's Week 11 matchup against the UCLA Bruins will have major Pac-12 South Championship implications. After all, ASU was just a field goal away from beating the Bruins and playing in the Pac-12 Championship game last year.

This game will be an all-out war and a close contest.

The reason this game is one ASU will likely lose is because there is a high chance it could come down to field goals. If that's the case, you can put a fork in ASU.

The last two times ASU and UCLA have played, the game has come down to a field goal. ASU missed their attempt two years ago to win the game while UCLA made their game-winner in Tempe last season.

ASU's kicking game is a major question mark entering 2013.

ASU's head coach Todd Graham told azcentral.com's Doug Haller that he isn't too concerned with the kicking game however:

People ask me about that: But I got a lot of confidence in Matt and I got a lot of confidence in Zane. The guys that are here (junior kickers Alex Garoutte and Jon Mora) have gotten better, but we got two really talented guys coming in. Zane and Matt are really talented, and I think they can handle it. We'll see. It's something I probably should be more worried about than I am.

It's unclear who will be the kicker for the Sun Devils at this time, but it doesn't seem like there is a savior on the horizon.

If this game is as close as expected, and comes down to a field goal, ASU will be on the short end of the scoreboard.

Score: ASU 28 UCLA 31

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