With all the attention being paid to the Oregon Ducks, the UCLA Bruins, and the Stanford Cardinal this offseason, it’s easy to forget the Arizona State may have the most dynamic and dangerous backfield in the Pac-12 (yes, and I say that as a Duck fan). Both D.J. Foster and Mario Grice are threats to score whenever the ball is in their hands, and I wouldn’t be surprised to see the Sun Devils make a run to the conference title game thanks to those two phenoms.
Foster, whose Sun Devils have a bye week and won’t begin their season until next Saturday, recently sat down with ESPN’s Kevin Gemmell to discuss the improvements he’s made to his game this offseason:
My body has matured a lot. I put on a lot of weight — healthy weight — that I needed to be a Division I running back. I’m in a lot better shape and I feel like a more durable back.
Body-wise, I can always improve everything. My quickness, my speed, my strength. That’s always an ongoing process. As a football player, my pass blocking. That’s another challenge I’m trying to step up this year and be more reliable this year and get better at that.
The Sun Devils will be a team to keep your eye on this season. They have the best defensive player in the nation in Will Sutton, and their offense returns Taylor Kelly and Chris Coyle. The Sun Devils will play Sacramento State on Sept. 5 before a brutal four-game stretch against, in order, Wisconsin, Standford, USC, and Notre Dame.