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Arizona State head coach Todd Graham pleased with progress

The first-year Sun Devils head coach reflected on Saturday's big win over the in-state rival Wildcats.

Christian Petersen

First-year Arizona State Sun Devils head coach Todd Graham spoke to Arizona Sports' Burns & Gambo on Monday and was still feeling good about his team's victory over its in-state rival on Saturday.

"It was special," Graham said. "No doubt about it, this was the game for us. We had it up year-round in the locker room."

The Sun Devils pulled off a 41-34 upset win over the Wildcats, then ranked No. 24, and came up big on the road. ASU finished just 7-5 on the year and struggled on defense for much of the season. At one point, they gave up 36 or more points in four straight games. But Graham has been largely credited for righting the ship, and beating UA is a big step toward making things right in Tempe.

ASU finished second in the country in both sacks (48.0) and tackles for a loss (106.0). They ranked third in interceptions with 20 and were 27th in the nation in total defense. They are currently awaiting word on which bowl they will play in come December.