Jayden Daniels threw for 236 yards and ran for two touchdowns, Rachaad White added rushing touchdowns and touchdowns, and Arizona State beat Colorado 35-13 on Saturday night in the Pac-12 opener for the two teams.
Arizona State (3-1, 1-0 Pac-12) rebounded from last week’s loss to BYU that resulted in the withdrawal of the AP’s Top 25 program. The Sun Devils never hung around, controlling the flow of the game with constant attack. and strong defense.
They sealed the game early in the fourth quarter when Daniels threw a full-back across the field to Ricky Pearsall, who then unleashed a forward pass back through the field to White, who ran 30 yards for the touchdown and a lead 28-10.
Daniels topped Arizona State with a 15-yard touchdown run.
Colorado (1-3, 0-1) moved closer for a few minutes, reducing the deficit to 14-10 early in the third quarter by scoring their first touchdown in more than nine quarters. Alex Fontenot managed a score of one meter on the third try.
But Arizona State responded with its own impressive practice, needing just six plays to move 71 yards down to make it 21-10. Freshman Elijhah Badger capped training with a 17-yard touchdown run, using a convoy of blockers to score for the first time in his college career.
White hit an 11-yard touchdown halfway through the second and Arizona State took a 14-3 lead at halftime. Colorado’s Cole Becker hit a 51-yard field goal 13 seconds before the break, ending the team’s scoreless streak that has lasted more than 120 minutes of football.
Colorado had one of its worst offensive performances in school history last week, gaining just 63 total yards in a 30-0 home loss to Minnesota. The Buffaloes moved the ball a bit better against the Sun Devils but couldn’t find the end zone in the first half.
Becker’s long field goal gave Colorado some momentum heading into the break. The Buffs responded with the touchdown early in the third quarter, but couldn’t continue.
Colorado’s Brendon Lewis threw for 67 yards, completing just 7 of 17 passes.
Take it away
Colorado: It was still an offensive fight for the Buffs, but they showed a little improvement in the second half. Colorado is painfully one-dimensional and the passing game needs to improve if it is to secure conference victories.
Arizona State: The Sun Devils had a good rebound, improving offensively as the game progressed and Daniels put in a non-rotating performance. A much more difficult test will take place next week when they travel to face UCLA.
Arizona State looked solid in their victory but would have to overtake several teams to return to the Top 25.
Colorado hosts USC next Saturday.
Arizona State travels to face UCLA next Saturday.
More AP College Football: https://apnews.com/hub/college-football and https://twitter.com/AP_Top25
Sign up for the AP College Football Newsletter: https://apnews.com/cfbtop25