Sep 14, 2013; Tempe, AZ, USA; Arizona State Sun Devils defensive end Carl Bradford (52) celebrates with teammates after beating the Wisconsin Badgers 32-30 at Sun Devil Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Matt Kartozian-USA TODAY Sports

#5 Stanford and #23 Arizona State face off with something to prove

In the lone college football game pitting two ranked opponents against each other on Saturday, #5 Stanford and #23 Arizona State open their Pac-12 season.

Stanford is coming off a lackluster performance against Army last week — but nonetheless  a 34-20 victory – moving them to 2-0 on the season.

“As far as the overall offense and what we want to do, we’re more diverse than we’ve been in years,” Stanford head coach David Shaw told ESPN.com. “We want to be able to change personnel groupings and have the diversity to be good in everything that we do. The emphasis is there because we’ve got the guys to do it.”

Arizona State is coming off perhaps the most controversial win of the young college football season.  The Sun Devils won 32-30 against perennial Big Ten powerhouse Wisconsin, but it was a flub by the officials that let the clock run out at the end of the game — when the Badgers were in field goal range — that ultimately gave ASU the win.

But, don’t tell Sun Devils’ head coach Todd Graham that Wisconsin got hosed.

“We just beat the defending Big Ten champion,” Graham said. “That’s the human element of the game, but at the end of the day, I’m proud of our guys how hard they played. They deserved to win and I truly believe that.”

Look for both teams to have added motivation this week.  Stanford surely wants to come out strong and prove that they belong among the top tier of college football teams – and Arizona State surely wants to prove that last week was indeed not an aberration, but a showing of quality victories to come.

Tags: Arizona State Sun Devils College Football Pac-12 Stanford

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