ASU Coach Todd Graham Lauds Strength of Pac-12 South


Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports

It’s no secret that the Pac-12 South has become one of the nation’s toughest divisions in college football, as seen with a host of contenders like USC, UCLA and both Arizona schools.

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Just look at last season, when UCLA was expected to be a national title contender and USC was ranked in the top 10 at one point. Yet, Arizona win the division with a 10-2 regular season record.

Plus, four of the six teams in the division are in the preseason Coaches Poll, released Thursday.

ASU head coach Todd Graham echoed the sentiments of the division’s prowess on Thursday at Pac-12 Media Days, speaking to how tough it is to coach in the conference’s southern division.

“There’s not a team in the Pac-12 that can’t beat another team,” said Graham, who saw his team’s national title hopes crumble last season on the road against lowly Oregon State in Corvallis.

“You look at that south, and it’s a battle ground. Then we kickoff with USC and UCLA. Then obviously on the road to Utah pretty early there.”

“But we signed up for it,” said Graham.

The Sun Devils are picked to finish second in the Pac-12 South behind USC. That makes for what could be an early divisional title decider when the Trojans head to Tempe on September 26th.

ASU beat USC at the death last season, with Mike Bercovici completing a 46-yard Hail Mary pass to Jaelen Strong as time expired.

While Bercovici told reporters he’d rather not throw any more of those, Graham spoke with a bit of hyperbole. He called it the greatest moment in ASU history.

If USC wants to prevent the Sun Devils from winning another division title, the Trojans will need to avoid another historic moment, proving Graham’s sentiments about the toughness of the division.

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