FSU Football: Opponent preview and breakdown of Arizona State

FSU Football will be taking the field come this Tuesday against a team that they have not seen in three and a half decades, the Arizona State Sun Devils.

After a season off from the world of postseason play, the FSU football team is back in the world of bowl games – and welcoming them back to the world will be a giant stuffed cereal mascot as the Seminoles are going to be in El Paso for the…yes, I’m going to have to write this…the Tony the Tiger Sun Bowl.

It will be a reunion of sorts for the Seminoles as they are in the bowl for the first time in over half a century – and also because they will be facing off against an Arizona State Sun Devils team for the first time since the 1984 season, the second game of back to back meetings that were both won by the Seminoles.

Head coach Herm Edwards has his team coming into the game with a 7-5 record on the season – a record that could have been better with a couple plays going differently – as well as a freshman quarterback that FSU football needs to be aware of at all times in the game.

Here’s a look at what the Seminoles will be facing in El Paso.

Offense

When it comes to passing the ball, the Sun Devils have been blessed this season with quarterback Jayden Daniels avoiding any freshman issues and throwing for over 2,700 yards as well as 17 touchdowns along with, and this is the most impressive thing considering what we’ve seen the last few seasons with the Seminoles, just two interceptions.

Where Daniels is going to be hurt is that fact that both the leading receiver and leading rusher, Brandon Aiyuk and Eno Benjamin, are missing this game and heading to the NFL early. The two stars combined for over 2,500 yards of total offense – and the Benjamin departure hurts the most because the next highest yard total for a running back is under 50 yards.

Defense

Arizona State finished with seven wins and could have gotten at the most three more – and most of that has to do with a defense that has two players, linebacker Darien Butler and defensive back Evan Fields, each leading the team with 77 tackles on the season.

The defensive line has several playmakers, including defensive lineman Jermayne Lole and his team leading five sacks. Defensive back Jack Jones leads the team with three interceptions on the season – a number that shows the problems in the secondary as just nine interceptions have been made this season.

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We Meet Again

FSU football and Arizona State are playing for the fifth time in history – and the second in a bowl game, after the Sun DEvils won the first meeting between the teams in the inaugural Fiesta Bowl in 1971. Since then, the Seminoles have won the last three games between them – in 1979 in a game in Tampa along with the afore mentioned games in Tempe in both 1983 and 1984.

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