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5 Must-Watch Arizona State Football Games in 2014

5 Must-Watch Arizona State Football Games in 2014

Todd Graham WIll Sutton
Mark J. Rebilas-USA TODAY Sports

Excitement around the Arizona State football program hasn't been higher since the late 1990s. Todd Graham has given a jolt to the desert, winning the Pac-12 South in just his second year. The Sun Devils are ranked No. 18 preseason and return their major playmakers on offense in 2014. Here are the five must-watch games for ASU.

5. Arizona State at Arizona (Nov. 28)

Arizona State
Mark J. Rebilas-USA TODAY Sports

5. Arizona State at Arizona (Nov. 28)

Arizona State
Mark J. Rebilas-USA TODAY Sports

Arizona State is 39-47-1 against Arizona in the Territorial Cup. ASU curb-stomped the Wildcats last year in Tempe 58-21. This year’s game is in Tucson, where the Devils have pulled off nail-biting victories the past two trips down south. Rich Rodriguez has been feeling the pressure to finally beat ASU for his first time from the fans all offseason.

4. Notre Dame at Arizona State (Nov. 8)

Notre Dame
Matt Cashore-USA TODAY Sports

4. Notre Dame at Arizona State (Nov. 8)

Notre Dame
Matt Cashore-USA TODAY Sports

The Notre Dame Fighting Irish travel to Tempe for the first time since 1997. The two teams met in Dallas last October where Notre Dame won 37-34. The Irish tried to cancel this game due to their ACC scheduling agreement, but ASU made Notre Dame honor their commitment. Notre Dame will return Everett Golson to lead Brian Kelly’s best offense since he has been at ND.

3. Arizona State at USC (Oct. 4)

Deantre Lewis
Matt Kartozian-USA TODAY Sports

3. Arizona State at USC (Oct. 4)

Deantre Lewis
Matt Kartozian-USA TODAY Sports

There used to be a time when Arizona State feared facing the fierce Trojans, but ever since Vontaze Burfict stepped on campus that fear has disappeared. Well, at least that fear in Tempe has long gone. ASU has won the past two matchups at Sun Devil Stadium, but they haven't won at the Coliseum since the Jake Plummer days of 1996.

2. Stanford at Arizona State (Oct. 18)

Stanford
Matt Kartozian-USA TODAY Sports

2. Stanford at Arizona State (Oct. 18)

Stanford
Matt Kartozian-USA TODAY Sports

Todd Graham has been selling his fans and his players on trying to win championships, both at the conference and national level. If Graham expects everybody else to be drinking his kool-aid, he will need to prove he can defeat Stanford. The Cardinal beat the Sun Devils early last fall 42-28, but the scoreboard didn’t tell the full story as ASU was soundly outplayed. When the teams met in Tempe for the Pac-12 Championship game, ASU lost 38-14.

1. UCLA at Arizona State (Sept. 25)

Arizona State UCLA
Jayne Kamin-Oncea-USA TODAY Sports

1. UCLA at Arizona State (Sept. 25)

Arizona State UCLA
Jayne Kamin-Oncea-USA TODAY Sports

While the Stanford Cardinal are a better team than the UCLA Bruins, this game is must-watch because it will go down to the wire and also decide who wins the Pac-12 south for the fourth straight time. Heisman candidate QB Brett Hundley and his 8th ranked Bruins return a lot from last year’s 10-3 team.