Originally posted on Crystal Ball Run  |  Last updated 9/19/13
No. 23 Arizona State (2-0) at No. 5 Stanford (2-0)  Saturday, 7:30pm ET, FOX Line: -7.5 The headline should be two ranked teams going at it early on in the Pa-12 season, unfortunately a group of officials and the end of last week's game between Wisconsin and Arizona State has overshadowed some of the talk heading toward this matchup. ASU won the game in the record books and that is all that matters at the end of the day. What it did prove was that ASU isn't to be taken lightly to say the least. It also sets up a heck of a challenge for two teams that are now considered potential division winners.  A lot is on the line when these two meet in a nationally televised game on FOX network for their first conference game.  For ASU to Win: Taylor Kelly needs to be Taylor Kelly from last week. He was very impressive throwing the football against an untested Wisconsin secondary. Has he stopped throwing and completing back-shoulder fades yet? Stanford is strong up front and if the ASU offensive line keeps Kelly safe his arm is a big time weapon and the receiving Corp (minus some bad open field drops) showed they have some good chemistry together. If they can't get the vertical passing game going that will spell trouble for the Sun Devils' chances. For Stanford to Win: The Cardinal need two things to happen, get a pass rush up front on defense and the same up front. ASU's defensive front got all sorts of pressure on Joel Stave last week and in order for Stanford to win they need to control the line of scrimmage for the power run game and to let Kevin Hogan do his thing. As long as the run game gets going things should be good to go for the Cardinal at home, but it is easier said than done. My suggestion would be to take the tape of the UW game and do what they did to open things up in the 2nd half—run horizontal and make the ASU defense worry about the edges, it opened up the middle of the field for the passing game and slowed the rush a bit.   Key Player (ASU): Marlon Grice, plain and simple. He had four touchdowns last week against the Badgers and if he can get going on Saturday afternoon on the ground it is just another weapon to this already dangerous offense. The only thing that wasn't so great was that he only had 88 yards on 22 carries last week. Yes, the four touchdowns were nice, but averaging under 4 yards a carry with that many carries isn't going to cut it when your passing game isn't working to perfection either. Grice has to have a bigger game in terms of yards this week for ASU to have a chance on the road. Key Player (Stanford): Wide Receiver Ty Montgomery has broken out a bit through the first two games and has 10 receptions in the early season. Montgomery needs to have a big game on Saturday and that means getting open early against a secondary that has played pretty well despite some youth. What the ASU defensive backfield showed last week was a small trend for missing open field tackles and Montgomery can be a slippery receiver in the open field as well. Hogan and Montgomery getting together to any significant degree  Key Stat: 10 or 5 - Someone is going to have their winning streak snapped on Saturday night in Palo Alto as Stanford comes in winning 10 games in a row and ASU 5 (yes, I'm counting last week even if in reality there was no winner-thanks refs). 
MORE FROM YARDBARKER

NFL won’t rule out Ezekiel Elliott being suspended for Week 3

Players with most to prove heading into NBA season

CC Sabathia not worried about booze-fueled celebrations

Bill Belichick defers Aaron Hernandez CTE, lawsuit questions

Brady claims sunburn can be avoided by drinking a lot of water

LIKE WHAT YOU SEE?
GET THE DAILY NEWSLETTER:

Knicks expect Carmelo Anthony to open camp with team

Irving was late to meeting with Stevens after car broke down

Ezekiel Elliott: Cowboys don’t play for ‘the talking heads’

Todd Gurley says Rams believe they can win Super Bowl

Seven players who stood out in Rams' thrilling win over 49ers

Rams WRs Sammy Watkins, Tavon Austin evaluated for concussions

The 'Greatest Show temporarily not on turf' quiz

Separating MLS playoff contenders from pretenders

WNBA Finals preview: Lynx look for revenge against Sparks

The 'Chris Sale joins an elite club' quiz

Three Up, Three Down: The home runs just keep on coming

Building on the NFL's positive changes beyond 2017

NFL Week 3 predictions

The 'MLB is as powerful as ever' quiz

After a decade in the WNBA, MVP Sylvia Fowles is ready for the spotlight

College football 2017 Week 4 predictions

10 teams that can unseat the Warriors in 2018

NFL Referee Hotline: Mike McCarthy is sick of these calls

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!

By clicking "Sign Me Up", you have read and agreed to the Yardbarker Privacy Policy and Terms of Service. You can opt out at any time. For more information, please see our Privacy Policy.

The 'Greatest Show temporarily not on turf' quiz

Separating MLS playoff contenders from pretenders

WNBA Finals preview: Lynx look for revenge against Sparks

Three Up, Three Down: The home runs just keep on coming

The 'Chris Sale joins an elite club' quiz

Building on the NFL's positive changes beyond 2017

NFL Week 3 predictions

After a decade in the WNBA, MVP Sylvia Fowles is ready for the spotlight

The 'MLB is as powerful as ever' quiz

10 teams that can unseat the Warriors in 2018

Today's Best Stuff
For Publishers
Company Info
Help
Follow Yardbarker