Arizona State went into the 4th quarter with a 28-22 lead, led by Cameron Marshall and Brock Osweiler. In a stunning performance, the Sun Devils went from six point lead to 21-point victory, dominating the Trojans in the final minutes.
61,495 fans watched the Sun Devils finally defeat the Trojans, a victory 12 years in the making. This game was a huge relief for ASU fans who had big dreams for the maroon and gold before the season, only to see them fall 17-14 on the road in Illinois last week.
Matt Barkley and the Trojans started the quarter on offense with the ball on their own 37-yard line, quickly driving into Sun Devils territory. They made it all the way to the ASU 14-yard line before Barkley was sacked, in the process fumbling the ball -- recovered by the Sun Devils.
Once again, the Trojans had a costly turnover in a key spot. Two fumbles recovered and an interception by Vontaze Burfict gave the Devils a lot of momentum in this game.
Off the turnover, the Devils drove down the field, gobbling up 3:33 of game time and scoring a big touchdown. They added the two-point conversation to take a commanding 36-22 lead with only 6:48 left in the game.
ASU kicker Alex Garoutte sent the ball out of bounds on the kickoff, giving the Trojans the ball at their own 40-yard line. On the first play of the drive, Barkley was wrapped up and made an ill-advised pass that was intercepted for a touchdown by Shelly Lyons. With 6:37 left in the game, ASU was up 43-22.
The Trojans were unable to come up with any kind of rally, going four-and-out with 4:58 left in the game. The ball was turned over to the Devils on the USC 30-yard line, where they ran the clock as much as they could through the use of running plays.
With the win, the Sun Devils move to 3-1, with a 1-0 record in Pac-12 conference play. They are now in the driver's seat in the Pac-12 South, as they and UCLA are the only teams with an undefeated mark in the division (Colorado has yet to play a conference game, and Arizona, USC and Utah have all lost once).
There were a lot of key performers in tonight's game, and we could spend all night recounting the dominating performances from the Sun Devils, but we will go with a "Three Star" format for the victory.
Third Star: Brock Osweiler. The ASU field general led an efficient offense all night long, completing 25 of 32 passes for 223 yards and 2 touchdowns. Osweiler picked up key yards on the ground on several occasions, giving up his body for the cause. He is the best quarterback to play for Arizona State since, well, it's hard to say. Did anyone like Rudy Carpenter?
Second Star: Jamal Miles. The shifty back was exciting to watch all evening, from kick returns almost broken free to swing passes turned into touchdowns. Miles made a career-high nine catches against USC, picking up 55 yards and scoring a key touchdown in the second quarter.
First Star: Cameron Marshall. The horse of the Sun Devils did not disappoint against the Trojans, torching USC for 141 yards on 25 carries. His 70-yard touchdown run in the first quarter set the tone for the game and put the wheels into motion for a successful night. His epic performance is reminiscent of Ryan Torain.
For more on the Sun Devils and to celebrate with the home fans, check out House Of Sparky.