All preseason, ASU football coach Todd Graham praised sophomore running back D.J. Foster.
Graham could barely go a practice without talking about Foster’s improvement in size and ability, but that didn’t translate into results in the season opening 55-0 victory over Sacramento State.
Foster carried the ball only once for five yards and caught four passes for 29 yards.
Foster isn’t worried, though, and said his lack of touches was just a factor of the offense.
“Every week, it’s just the game plan to put the offense in the best position, and sometimes guys just have to come out,” Foster said.
Foster played only half the game because of the blowout and offensive coordinator Mike Norvell said he had opportunities, but the execution wasn’t there.
“He was targeted on a few routes that we didn’t connect on, and that’s part of it,” Norvell said. “Plus he only played half the game.”
Norvell said Foster is a large part of the Sun Devils’ offensive plan and that he wants Foster to get 18-20 touches per game, starting this week against Wisconsin.
Foster’s presence could be a game changer offensively against the Badgers, so Norvell is making sure those touches happen.
“D.J. is an X-factor every week just because of his versatility and the things we can do,” Norvell said. “We want to keep him active in every game plan. We definitely think he’s going to be a big part of it this week.”
Norvell and Foster both said the offensive game plan this week is to run the ball, so Foster’s involvement will become even more crucial.
“Coach Graham is really emphasizing that the team that can run the ball is going to win the game,” Foster said. “So we are going to run the offense outside and inside.”
Foster knows what his increased presence can do for the offense, especially its pace, and said he is ready for Saturday.
“Most definitely,” Foster said. “We know that’s our thing, our explosiveness as an offense. We’ve got to use our athleticism in this game and push the tempo.”
-Freshman safety Marcus Ball was out of his sling for the first time since suffering a shoulder injury during the scrimmage on the final day of Camp Tontozona. He was still the only Sun Devil in the green no-contact jersey.
-As of 11 a.m., there were less than 6,000 tickets remaining for Saturday’s game, according to Director of Media Relations Doug Tammaro.
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