Arizona State Preview.
The game tomorrow should be fun for Trojan fans. Usually the Trojans get over the disappointment of defeats by beating the hell out of the next crappy team that they play. (Just like the Stanford Loss – Cal whippin’ of earlier this season.)
Here’s a shot of ASU’s creepy-looking mascot. That thing’s name really is “Sparky” – which was a popular nickname back in the 1950’s. (Now it’s a popular nickname for really old guys.) Notice that he’s making the official Arizona State hand sign, which looks like the “shocker” to me.
Q. What do you get when you drive quickly through the Sun Devil campus?
A. An undergraduate degree.
The “at least we’ve got better academics” line is one I usually stay away from; I leave that one to the ugly Cal Bears fans. In the case of ASU, however, I need to at least mention it. ASU’s academic reputation is somewhere between DeVry and the University of Phoenix. A little research turned up some great stats:
In 2009-2010, ASU admitted 90% of its applicants. Admission is ensured to Arizona residents in the top 25% of their high-school class with at a weighted secondary GPA of 2.5 GPA, or anyone with 24 credits of community college work with a 2.0 GPA minimum. Note that linebacker Vontaze Burfict was committed to USC, but became concerned that he wouldn’t make grades here. Guess where he ended up?
Since I was in the top 10% of my high school class, I actually was offered an academic scholarship for Arizona State. I was never very impressed with either of those “achievements.” After attending my 10-year high school reunion, I was even less impressed.
A search for athletic titles produces some impressive palmares: ASU won national championships in men’s archery 15 times, women’s archery 21 times, mixed archery 20 times, men’s badminton 13 times, women’s badminton 17 times, mixed badminton 10 times… (It actually started the list with those “sports.”) The list continues with fewer championships from sports that you’ve heard of; but is notably missing any mention of football greatness.
A search for “Noted alumni of Arizona State” produced a list that is practically devoid of anyone I’ve ever heard of. (Excluding “actors” – because that’s not really a job.) Barry Goldwater, Barry Bonds, and Reggie Jackson are really the only familiar names to me. I always liked Reggie, hated Barry Bonds, and am completely ambivalent about Barry Goldwater. Although he is a politician… So – never mind – I hate him, too.
Of note is that ASU’s distinguished alumni list boasts 6 mixed martial-arts competitors. I’m thinking that T shirts adorned with Ed Hardy stuff or pictures of shiny dragons are big there.
In conclusion, Arizona State is a glorified “high school with ashtrays.” I won’t gloat after we win – because I expect it. See you at the Coliseum – and keep that swagger!