Arizona State football players on the field during halftimeArizona State players regroup during halftime against Utah

In a challenging first half, Arizona State University found themselves trailing the Utah Utes 24-3. It was a tough start for the Sun Devils, as everything that could go wrong seemingly did.

The troubles began early for ASU when they lost their starting quarterback, Trenton Bourguet, in the first quarter. Jacob Conover stepped in but faced difficulties, failing to complete a pass and even rushing for a loss of -2 yards. The ASU offense as a whole struggled, managing just 13 rushing yards and a concerning -1 passing yard throughout the first half.

Although Bourguet later returned to the game, he still had trouble connecting with his receivers and came close to throwing an interception. Despite these offensive woes, the Arizona State defense did their best to hold the line. Despite allowing two early touchdowns to Utah’s Devaughn Vele, they managed to make multiple stops in the red zone, even forcing a missed field goal. However, they still conceded nearly 300 yards and an incredible receiving touchdown by Munir McClain in the second quarter, which extended Utah’s lead to 24-3.

Utah’s quarterback, Bryson Barnes, had a strong first half, completing 15 of 24 passes for 130 yards and three touchdowns. Additionally, Utah’s ground game was effective, with three different rushers accumulating over 50 yards, including Barnes himself.

Despite the relentless pressure on ASU’s quarterbacks throughout the first half, they managed to avoid taking multiple sacks. This impressive feat was accomplished by an offensive line that had only six active players, who held their own admirably.

As the Sun Devils enter the second half, their primary focus will undoubtedly be on reviving their passing game. If they hope to stage a comeback and salvage the game, they must find a way to break through Utah’s defensive lines and generate more offensive opportunities.

Arizona State’s first-half performance against Utah has left them with a significant deficit to overcome. While their defense has shown resilience, their offensive struggles have been evident. The second half will be crucial for ASU, as they aim to turn the tide and make a comeback against the Utah Utes.

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