Arizona State fans might not see the starters coming out of the locker room for the third quarter. After a half of play, ASU leads Colorado 31-7, out-gaining the Buffaloes 350 to 180 in the yards department. Colorado's only touchdown came on a tipped swing pass that was taken to the house, making it 103 minutes of game-time since the Buffaloes have scored an offensive touchdown.
Running back Cameron Marshall looks as refreshed as he claimed to be coming out of the bye, racking up 99 yards on only 10 carries to go along with two touchdowns. Marshall has shown improved burst, busting off multiple 20+ yard runs.
The biggest plus to take away from the game after two quarters is that quarterback Brock Osweiler hasn't had one of his stereotypical mediocre games against sub-par opponents. Looking as sharp as he has all season, Brock has completed a pass to nine different receivers, including arguably his best throw of the season, a 33-yard strike to Kevin Ozier in which Osweiler showed exceptional anticipation. His stat line going into the half reads 13-18 for 230 yards and two touchdowns. The leading receiver for the Devils is Aaron Pflugrad with two catches for 57 yards.
Both times that the Colorado offense has gotten over the 50 yard line (not including the desperation hail mary at the end of the half) the drives have ended in turnovers. First was a fumble recover by Brandon Johnson after a botched hook-and-ladder play. The second was a red zone pick by safety Clint Floyd, his third of the season.
Vontaze Burfict is also having a standout performance despite the linebackers rotating for much of the first 30 minutes. He's tied for the team lead in tackles with Floyd with five including one tackle for a loss. Defensive end Davon Coleman and linebacker Oliver Aaron also have one sack each, the Devils' only two in the half.
For Colorado, not much has been working out offensively. Backup quarterback Nick Hirschman started the game but was quickly pulled after he seemed to be putting too much air under his first six passes. The redshirt-freshman was quickly replaced by starter Tyler Hansen, who was medically cleared after sustaining a concussion last week against Oregon.
Even though his stat-line (13-21, 159 yards, 1 INT) doesn't exactly show it, Hansen has been for the most part relatively erratic, despite complete a few solid passes on the run. The Buffaloes also haven't shown any signs of a run game, totaling only five yards with starter Rodney Stewart out.