On Halloween, the Golden Bears and the Sun Devils faced off in a Pac-10 battle that would either make or break the season.
There was a good 40,000-plus in attendance for the game that started at 12:30, and believe it or not, for the first time all season the crowd sounded alive.
If Halloween is what pumped up our crowd, we should think about celebrating it more often.
Even after Cal took a quick 14-0 lead in the first quarter, the Devils kept focused and recovered a fumble in the red zone. As the Devils offense came onto the field, a new No. 10 came out instead of a No. 15. Samson Szakacsy, the redshirted sophomore quarterback, came in for the goal line offense, and believe it or not, he threw his first collegiate touchdown.
The Devil fans were pumped and you could feel the momentum switching to the Devils side even though they were still down a touchdown. It was also great to see another quarterback have success to maybe help salvage ASU's disappointing season. On the next offensive drive Sullivan came back out, and that was the last we saw of Samson.
Just when you think you are going to see more of another QB, Sullivan always finds a way to redeem himself—for instance, in the Cal game by throwing an 80-yard touchdown to Kyle Williams.
Going into halftime ASU's defense had held Heisman candidate Javhid Best to only 38 yards rushing and one receiving touchdown.
Other than that, the theme of the day was, where did Samson go? After throwing a touchdown pass and having momentum and confidence on his side, he was nowhere to be found on the field. Our favorite freshman Brock Osweiler didn't even see playing time.
Another bright star that looks to have a promising future is true freshman Cameron Marshall. He had a great day with 71 yards on the ground to go along with a TD.
Everyone on the Sun Devils sideline played their hearts out, but a win was not in the script for this game.
After the game concluded, yes, the Sun Devil fanbase was disappointed, but at least we were in this one till the end. Unlike the week before, when much of ASU was stomach-sick after the beatdown from Stanford, a lot of people went out on Saturday night despite the loss.
As people were dressed up in ridiculous costumes, partying and trying to forget the loss, I could hear side conversations about the game. People kept asking, "What is Danny Sullivan doing for Sun Devil football?"
Honestly, I have no answer. The season is almost over, and he is going to graduate. Why not start a new experiment with our younger quarterbacks that are decently mobile? Why not play the younger players and see what we have in store for years to come?
A bowl game is still not out of the picture, but with three of the next four games against nationally ranked teams, it doesn't look promising.
This week the Trojans come to Tempe after a defeat by Oregon. Look for ASU to come out fired up with a chip on their shoulders to show that they aren't the same team that got dominated on both sides of the ball by Oregon State and Stanford.