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Spring Practice Notebook: Expectations Rise After Fifth Practice

The Sun Devils are now a third of the way through their spring practices.

TEMPE -- As the temperatures begin to rise, so does the intensity of Arizona State's spring practices. 

The Sun Devils have just completed practice No. 5 of 15, effectively marking their spring practice period one third of the way finished. The introductory window begins to close, and mistakes in practice begin to magnify. 

Now is not the time for any of Arizona State's players to fold, but halfway through the second week of practice is just about where you'll see players begin to separate themselves. 

Like ASU offensive coordinator Glenn Thomas said last week, "You can tell pretty quick who knows it, who's studying and who's on top of the playbook because when they're in there, they already kind of have some convictions and confidence in what's going on. And then those guys can start to separate themselves out sooner than later." 

With 10 practices remaining, the Sun Devils don't have any answers to questions such as who will play quarterback or who will step up in the defensive backfield. However, we are one day closer to uncovering those questions as time in Tempe marches on. 


Spring Practice Notebook: Day 5

  • Quarterbacks will drive the story lines for Arizona State, and rightfully so. On Wednesday, the Sun Devils again saw quarterback Finn Collins take starting snaps with the first team in install periods. Quarterback Paul Tyson also saw reps with the ones later in practice. 
  • Special teams had an upgraded emphasis, with the kickoff return team seeing a devoted unit of install. Returners for ASU included Daniyel Ngata, D.J. Taylor, Elijah Badger and Giovanni Sanders. Taylor received criticism from coaches after fumbling a kickoff, something he struggled with last season and was a large reason why receiver LV Bunkley-Shelton took over duties towards the end of 2021. Kicker Jace Feely missed a handful of kicks in individual drills ranging from 40-50 yards. 
  • One of the more attention-grabbing drills at ASU practice has been the involvement of medicine balls, which have been used for running backs to test their agility and make defenders miss. 
  • Although short and sweet, we did get a taste of team action. The first-team defense stepped up in a major way, shutting down ASU's lone rushing attempt and forced quarterback Trenton Bourguet to keep his passes short. Tyson did get an opportunity to air it out against the second-team defense, but had a well-placed pass fall to the ground after Badger couldn't quite get his hands on it. 
  • Fullback? We've seen a lot of pistol since the beginning of spring practice, but on Wednesday the Sun Devils installed a classic I formation with a running back led by a fullback. That fullback? Tight end Jalin Conyers, who received a handoff and scored on a short-yardage scenario against nothing but the wind. Could Conyers be coming to an end zone near you? We'll have to find out. 

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