Arizona State Sun Devils Basketball Should Be Considered A Final Four Threat
Sitting pretty at 9-0, the Arizona State Sun Devils are the best team in the Pac-12. It’s a good bet nobody gave that prediction going into the season. In fact, I’ll guarantee nobody had them ahead of Arizona and UCLA in November. How has Bobby Hurley got this team to such a fast start?
Last season, the Sun Devils went 15-18. A losing record isn’t going to garner you much fanfare going into the next year. Hurley had his work cut out for him. Thankfully, everything has worked out for him in 2017. Arizona State has 4 players who score 14 or more points.
It’s this kind of scoring that has propelled Hurley and his team. Last season, the Sun Devils managed 78.6 points per game. This year they are scoring an average of 91.8, a school record. This includes two 90+ point outbursts against two Nationally ranked teams in Xavier and Kansas.
A lot of the scoring load falls on four players, Tra Holder (21.2 ppg), Kodi Justice (14.1 ppg), Shannon Evans II (19 ppg), and Romello White (16.1 ppg). This is a veteran group of talent. Aside from Romello White ( Sophomore), all the team’s leading scorers are Seniors. This includes Evans II, a graduate transfer from Buffalo, Hurley’s previous school.
The Pac-12 is still going to be tough to compete in. We know Arizona, who haven’t looked nearly as good as most thought, will be in the thick of things come March. UCLA has 5 double-digit scorers. Colorado, Utah, Washington, Oregon, Oregon State, all have talented team’s as well. But none of these rosters have the scoring of Arizona State, who can beat you with four different players.
It’s a toss-up as to who the leading scorer for ASU will be. Holder is the most impressive scorer, but there’s no shortage of playmakers on the roster. And while the team’s defense leaves little to be admired, the scoring attack has more than made up for that.
It’s too early to call the Arizona State Sun Devils a Final Four favorite. We still need to see them play a tough Pac-12 schedule. Although, with the way they’ve handled it so far, things are definitely pointing in the right direction. Thus, the Sun Devils should be a threat, and they should strike fear into anyone who plays them.[DanielTwitter]