Found January 30, 2013 on Fox Sports Arizona:
TEMPE, Ariz. Jahii Carson met reporters in a hallway at the Arizona State practice facility late Tuesday afternoon in a gray sweat shirt, comfy workout pants and bare feet. Not to worry. Carson had just come from a post-practice session in the Sun Devils ice tub, one of the ways ASU is attempting to mitigate the heavy workload for Carson and ASUs 40-Minute Men this season. Carrick Felix, Carson and Jonathan Gilling rank 1-2-3 in minutes played in Pac-12 conference games. Keeping its top talent on the floor is a major reason that ASU (16-4, 5-2) is tied for second place in the loss column as the conference season hits the midway point this weekend. The Sun Devils wrap up the first half with games at Washington State on Thursday night and Washington on Saturday. Our guys have been warriors, ASU coach Herb Sendek said. I like playing, Carson said simply. Felix averages 39.86 minutes a game in Pac-12 play in his breakout senior season, ranking No. 6 in NCAA Division 1. If there has been fatigue, Felix has camouflaged it well. He has been named the league player of the week three times, including last week. He played 83 minutes in victories over USC and UCLA, the first in overtime, and sat out for a total of 109 seconds. Showing that vigilance never rests, Felix broke from his own end to block an attempted layup by Jordan Adams with two seconds remaining in Saturday's 78-60 victory over UCLA -- after Adams ill-advised strip of the ball as the final seconds ticked off. Carson (39.14) ranks No. 10 in the nation and is on pace to break James Hardens record for average minutes by an ASU freshman. Gilling (38.71) ranks No. 14. ASU did not have a lot of experienced depth entering the season, and the suspension of guard Chris Colvin for the last three games made playing the regulars even more of a necessity, but it is not something Sendek frets about. You never know how things are going to unfold, but its the place we are in right now," Sendek said. "There is no sense making too much of it. Those guys are young and in good shape." Syracuse is the only other major program with as many as two players in the top 20 for minutes played this season. The workload certainly has not seemed burdensome for ASU. Carson is sixth in the Pac-12 with a 16.4 scoring average and second in assists (5.0) in league games, and Felix is ninth in scoring and third in rebounding -- the only player in the top 10 in those two categories. He is averaging 15.9 points and 9.6 rebounds and has four double-doubles in seven Pac-12 games. Both Carson and Gilling are in the top five in assist-to-turnover ratio. Both played 81 minutes against the L.A. schools, when Gilling had 20 points, 23 rebounds and 14 assists, including a career-high eight assists against UCLA. Those three are not alone. With Colvin out, shooting guard Evan Gordon played 123 of the 125 minutes available the last three games, and he had 40 points in 83 minutes against the L.A. schools. Gordon is averaging 32.1 minutes per conference game, and center Jordan Bachynski is at 29.3. The only game in which the lack of depth was noticeable was in a 71-54 loss to Arizona, a two-point game until Carson got into foul trouble midway through the second half. It is certainly not a science, and you have to do it by feel," Sendek said. "There are a lot of variables, from everything to how we practice to what is happening in a given game." ASU has reshaped its practices this season, players said, with the focus less on less physical work and more on mental preparation for the next opponent, breaking down offensive and defensive tendencies. "I think Coach Sendek is influenced by the NBA guys (new assistants Eric Musselman and Bill Greer), because I dont think they go really hard at their practice in the NBA during the season," said Gilling, a sophomore forward from Denmark. "It is a little easier this year than last year, but dont tell him." Added Carson: For the most part, he tries to cut it down to us getting a lot of skill and development instead of just pounding in practice. I think it helps the guys who play a lot of minutes." At the same time, the Sun Devils are reaping the benefits of a summer spent doing conditioning work and spending hour after hour in the gym. I try to be in the best shape I can, so I can at least stay out there and make at least 39.9 minutes out of the 40 good," Carson said. "I pace myself to know when the timeouts are coming, and coach Herb knows when to give us blows and give us rest. "Sometimes I dont think Im tired, but he sees there are times when I will take not the shot I was supposed to on offense or miss a defensive assignment, and hell give me a blow." Sendek also uses the designated media timeouts to give his starters more rest. He often removes Carson, Felix and Gilling just before the scheduled timeouts that occur at the first stoppage of play with under 16 minutes, under 12 minutes, under eight minutes and under four minutes remaining in each half. Felix got extra rest during the media timeout with 11:53 left in the first half against USC, and he played the final 36 minutes without a break. The only time he left the UCLA game was at a media timeout, too. Its definitely tough being out there the whole time, but Ive got the lungs for it. Im young, said Felix, 22, with a laugh. Its definitely good to be able stay out on the court the whole time and be a leader and be an example for my guys out on the court, however long I play. "But if I play two minutes, three minutes, 20 minutes, 40 minutes, I am go out there and give it all I got. It could be considered a badge of honor. If you are playing the whole game, that means your coach does not want you off the floor," Carson said. "I take that as a compliment and try to continue to make him let me on the floor. If my minutes start to decrease, that means he is not starting to be as comfortable with me on the court."

A year in, ASU staff sees progress in recruiting

A year ago, the Arizona State coaching staff was still scrambling. Todd Graham was less than two months in to his tenure as the Sun Devils' new football coach, and National Signing Day was imminent. Graham and his still-incomplete staff were working with very little time to assemble their first recruiting class. A year later, ASU has made significant strides in recruiting, putting...

Means to visit ASU

Arizona State has been recruiting Solomon Means for a just a few weeks, but that hasn’t affected the Butte (Calif.) College’s cornerback’s enthusiasm about being pursued by the Sun Devils. Means will be visiting Tempe this weekend and talked to Devils Digest about his recruitment process with ASU.

Carson leads Sun Devils past Washington St.

PULLMAN, Wash. (AP) -- Jahii Carson scored 25 points and Arizona State defeated Washington State 63-59 on Thursday night for its third straight victory. Evan Gordon had 13 points and Carrick Felix had 11 points -- all in the second half -- and 11 rebounds for the Sun Devils (17-4, 6-2 Pac-12), who overcame 4-for-11 free-throw shooting and a nine-point Washington State first-half...

Devils set for Washington road trip

With wins over USC and UCLA last week, the Arizona State men's basketball team vaulted itself right back into the thick of the Pac-12 race, garnering some attention from the national media in the process. Back on the proverbial NCAA tournament bubble and off to their best start in league play since 2008-09, the Sun Devils have their sights set on the Pacific Northwest for their next test.

Arizona St. 63, Washington St. 59

Jahii Carson scored 25 points and Arizona State defeated Washington State 63-59 on Thursday night for its third straight victory. Evan Gordon had 13 points and Carrick Felix had 11 points - all in the second half - and 11 rebounds for the Sun Devils (17-4, 6-2 Pac-12), who overcame 4-for-11 free-throw shooting and a nine-point Washington State first-half lead. Royce Woolridge scored...

Eagerness defines ASU baseball team

When asked to describe the team this season in one word, Arizona State Head Coach Tim Esmay said with a smile, “relentless”. With the team now eligible for the post-season, seeing their in-state rivals capture the World Series, there is no shortage of motivation among the Sun Devil players and coaches.
Sun Devils News
Delivered to your inbox
You'll also receive Yardbarker's daily Top 10, featuring the best sports stories from around the web. Customize your newsletter to get articles on your favorite sports and teams. And the best part? It's free!

Today's Best Stuff
For Bloggers

Join the Yardbarker Network for more promotion, traffic, and money.

Company Info
What is Yardbarker?

Yardbarker is the largest network of sports blogs and pro athlete blogs on the web. This site is the hub of the Yardbarker Network, where our editors and algorithms curate the best sports content from our network and beyond.