ASU football pulls past Oregon State, winning soundly 52-24

The Sun Devils earned their first Pac-12 win

The ASU football team soundly defeated the Oregon State Beavers 52-24 on Saturday night.

The Sun Devils (3-2, 1-1) were able to have a dominating offensive game after two straight weeks of struggling to move the ball. 

The team was able to put 52 points and 558 total yards on an Oregon State (1-4, 0-2) team that allows the third most yards in the country. The mind-boggling stat is from the running game for the Sun Devils. Sophomore running back Eno Benjamin rushed for a school record 312 yards. 

He was able to add three scores on the ground, and he picked up an eight-yard receiving touchdown from senior quarterback Manny Wilkins

Not only did Benjamin break off for two 40-plus touchdown runs, but he became the first 300-yard rusher in Sun Devils history. He said it was a great feeling and the team knew they were going to be able to run the ball on Oregon State.

"We went through practice, we executed," Benjamin said. "If you saw the way we practiced this week, you would have known that is was going to happen and that's a testament to our offensive line." 

Benjamin said that he learned a lot as he sat last year behind the two headed monster of senior running backs Kalen Ballage and Demario Richard. 

"I learned a lot from those two," Benjamin said. "That's one thing that I really enjoyed and really appreciated. I think last year really set me up for something like this. Just going out and being hungry on the field." 

On the defensive side of the ball, the Sun Devils have allowed 743 rushing yards the last three games after being ranked as the number one team in stopping the run earlier this season.

Oregon State freshman running back Jermar Jefferson torched the Sun Devils defense for 254 yards and two scores. His playmaking ability kept the Beavers in the game, but his ability alone could not keep the team in the game. 

Oregon State was able to convert on some key third and fourth down plays that kept them close through three quarters. 

"The DB''s are doing their jobs, but we are not getting enough pressure," redshirt junior linebacker Malik Lawal said. "Sometimes it's just coverage mistakes and it's just one of those issues where we give the quarterback the right reads in order to make the right plays to make the first downs. It's still a process to work on. We will just have to go over it in film and figure it out." 

Lawal said the linebackers have to be relentless throughout the game, and on Saturday, they were able to force five sacks and four fumbles.  

ASU as a team was only penalized once for a delay of game after a week where crucial fouls hurt the Sun Devils chances on the road.

"We expect to play like that," Lawal said. "When you just lose your cool, your composure, thats how you're playing, but we expect to play with poise all the time. No penalties, that's a testament to what we do day in and day out."

The Sun Devils are a completely different team at home then on the road. Head Coach Herm Edwards has said that the running game and defense travels, but for Wilkins, it is all about the little details that can help the team win a road game moving forward.

"Little details, little things that make the difference in football games, like holding the football," Wilkins said. "Little things like the quarterback making the correct read, receivers running the right route at the right depth. You can't on the road, you can't give the opposing team gifts." 

Wilkins said the team can't wait until the third quarter to get rolling offensively, and that it needs to happen next week when the Sun Devils are on the road.

"We have to get momentum and start rolling," Wilkins said. "You got to start fast. You can't wait until the third quarter to get rolling. We got to start rolling in the first quarter, especially against a team like Colorado. They're going to go fast."

ASU not only earned the first conference win of Edwards' career, but they continue to try and turn the tables in a positive note. Going into Colorado, and to take a win from an undefeated Buffaloes team (4-0, 1-0) on Oct. 6th, the Sun Devils will have to be ready for the tough road task. 

Reach the reporter at or follow @SebastianEman5 on Twitter. 

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