Originally posted on Fox Sports Arizona  |  Last updated 1/23/12
After a 64-43 pounding Saturday at the hands of a Utah team that has lost 11 games this season by 14 points or more, Arizona State forward Carrick Felix was asked the obvious question. Have the Sun Devils hit rock bottom? "If this is not it, I don't know what is," the junior said. Playing without Trent Lockett -- their best player and one who also had become, by default, their point guard -- the Devils were blasted twice on their first trek to play the Pac-12's two newcomers. ASU lost 69-54 to Colorado on Thursday. Things will get somewhat better when Lockett returns from the ankle sprain that sidelined him for the trip. However, he still will be playing out of position, and Arizona State is just overmatched on most nights. "It's been hard," coach Herb Sendek said of the team's plight without a point guard. "If you want to oversimplify things and try to put an understanding on this season's journey, it might begin and end with that commentary, because let's face it: That's arguably the most vital position on the court. "It just has been one thing after another, and it's forced everybody to have to adjust." To review, the Sun Devils expected incoming freshman Jahii Carson to shine at the point, but he was never cleared academically by the NCAA. Junior-college transfer Chris Colvin was the backup, but he lost the job to shooting guard Keala King. When King was booted from the team for "unacceptable conduct" on Jan. 5, Lockett was shifted. Lockett turned the ball over a lot, but he helped get his teammates good shots, and they made enough of them to beat USC on the road and Oregon State at home. He sprained his right ankle against Oregon, though, and after that, the Sun Devils faced long odds against a Colorado team that is very good at home. "We talked about everybody carrying a little bit of extra water," Sendek said after the loss at Colorado. They spilled most of it at Utah in perhaps the team's most disappointing result of the season. "I need to get my head out of the gutter," Felix said. "I just have to keep chopping wood." NOTES, QUOTES -- The Sun Devils, who had a season-high 22 assists in the Oregon State win the week before, had just nine Thursday in the loss at Colorado. -- Arizona State's 43 points against Utah were a season low. The 21-point margin tied for the sixth worst under coach Herb Sendek. -- Arizona State never led at Utah. The Utes turned the ball over on their first possession, then made their next five shots for a 12-0 lead, and the rout was on. BY THE NUMBERS: 15 -- First-half points for the Sun Devils scored against Colorado, which had 31 points at the half. QUOTE TO NOTE: "I don't have an easy answer for it. It's something that right now doesn't offer easy explanation other than the fact that we did not play a good basketball game. We didn't put the ball in the hole, and we didn't defend." -- Arizona State coach Herb Sendek, after his team was blown out 64-43 at Utah. PLAYER NOTES -- Junior F Carrick Felix had 13 points and five rebounds in the loss at Colorado, then scored 13 more at Utah. -- Junior PG Chris Colvin scored 15 points against Colorado, but he had just five points, six assists and four turnovers before fouling out at Utah. He missed all three of his 3-point tries. -- C Ruslan Pateev, a 7-foot junior, did not score at Utah despite going against a team that had just one healthy player taller than 6-foot-6.
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