September 13, 2004
Having defeated a Big Ten team on the road Saturday, Arizona State is eager to play another Big Ten team in Sun Devil Stadium this weekend.
The Sun Devils will try to start the season 3-0 for the first time since 2000 when they play 16th-ranked Iowa (2-0). Last year at Iowa, the tough Hawkeyes’ defense shut out the ASU offense in a 21-2 victory.
"It's going to be payback next week," said Derek Hagan, ASU's junior wide receiver.
"I can't wait to play them," said safety Riccardo Stewart. "It's going to be a great game, and we're obviously going to be fired up and ready to go after what happened last year."
ASU defeated Northwestern 30-21 behind three touchdown passes from quarterback Andrew Walter.
Coach Dirk Koetter characterized the Devils' performance in the win as having more negatives than positives.
He cited too many dropped passes, the inability to finish drives with touchdowns, and a roughing-the-kicker penalty.
"We know we'll have to play better to beat a team like Iowa," Koetter said.
"We haven't played our best game. But we haven't had to play our best game yet."
Sophomore running back Loren Wade had a career-high 24 carries, getting 108 yards.
"Loren is a good runner, and he showed it," Koetter said.
The consistency in the ground game against Northwestern made Walter's job much easier. ASU will need that kind of balance against Iowa.
"When we can do that," Walter said, "that makes us a lot more versatile on offense."
The Devils are hoping to get starting center Drew Hodgdon back for the game. Hodgdon, recovering from a broken foot, was walking around Saturday without a boot.
"I'll have a feel (for his status) on Friday," Koetter said smiling.
ASU finished the game with guard Grayling Love having to play tackle for Chaz White, who injured an ankle.
Zach Krula replaced Love at right guard.
Cornerback Josh Golden again suffered cramps and missed the second half.
Redshirt freshman Chad Green and junior Mike Davis Jr., who was victimized on a touchdown pass last year against Iowa, substituted for Golden and occasionally gave Chris McKenzie a rest.
"Chad and Mike stepped up," Koetter said, "did what they had to do."