As the holiday season becomes more and more commercialized, it is often easy to forget the true meaning of the season and focus on material goods.
On Christmas Day, the Sun Devils took a break from football and reminded themselves of all the often overlooked blessings. For a few hours the ASU football team, which was away from their families in preparation for the upcoming Kraft Fight Hunger Bowl against Navy served food to the homeless at Glide Memorial Church in San Francisco.
“It was great, really humbling,” junior tight end Chris Coyle said. “It’s great to see those happy faces and help out the less fortunate on Christmas. It definitely humbles you.”
Redshirt senior linebacker Brandon Magee is no stranger to community service. Although Magee regularly gives back to the community, he enjoyed seeing the reactions of his teammates who were not as familiar with serving.
“The part I like most is when we were back on the bus and everyone was talking about how good it felt,” Magee said. “To come out here and serve like that was huge for us. Hopefully it changed some peoples lives and put things in perspective.”
Both Magee and senior running back Cameron Marshall have had memorable careers in Tempe.
During his time at ASU, Magee accumulated plenty of on field accolades and achievements. This season he eclipsed 100 tackles, including 17 in the Sun Devils’ win over UA. The California native also played baseball for the Sun Devils and signed a contract with the Boston Red Sox earlier this season.
However, Magee has never played in a bowl game as he missed the 2011 game with a torn Achilles. In the final game of his collegiate career, Magee will finally get to play in the postseason and feels winning Saturday’s game would be among his best moments as a Sun Devil.
“It would rank number one,” Magee said. “A bowl win would mean a lot to me. Getting that eighth win for the program and for the team. I’ve been through a lot and it would mean a lot to get that win.”
Although Marshall was able to play in ASU’s 2011 bowl game, he has never won a bowl game either and wants to go out a winner.
While freshman running back D.J. Foster and junior running back Marion Grice stole a bit of the spotlight from Marshall this season, his accomplishments as a Sun Devil were numerous. Marshall’s 18 rushing touchdowns in 2011 tied him with Terry Battle and Woody Green for the most rushing touchdowns in a season at ASU. He is also 12th in career rushing yards and fourth in rushing touchdowns.
There is no denying Marshall’s individual successes, but the running back, who has always been a strong team player, wants to make sure his final game is about the entire ASU team.
“(We need to end the season) with the message we’ve had the whole year in terms of strong character and all the off the field stuff, character, work ethic, things like that” Marshall said. “But, obviously we want to finish strong and win the game.”
Grice is back
After his brother was murdered last week, Grice left the team to spend some time with his family. The junior running back rejoined his teammates in San Francisco and was greeted with a warm reception.
“Our team is pretty close,” coach Todd Graham said. “Marion, if you know him, is a man of few words. If you watch Cam (Marshall) he’s been going everywhere with him, taking care of him. That’s what our guys do. That’s one thing I’m proud of. In a short amount of time we have become a very close team.
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