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Three Presents Santa Should Deliver Arizona State on Christmas

While people across the globe awake early on Christmas morning to unwrap their presents, here's what the Arizona State Sun Devils are hoping to get from Santa this year.
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Here's to hoping Sparky left cookies and milk out for Santa. 

The Arizona State Sun Devils, much like many others across the planet, have woken up from their slumber in hopes of Christmas morning magic. 

Whether that be new cleats, visors or shooting sleeves, the Sun Devils are sure to have at least gotten something from their wish-list. 

While we're sure to see what some players receive on Christmas on social media, what the overall university will receive from Santa moving forward still remains unseen. 

So, what should the jolly old man leave for Arizona State to prosper in the next year? 

There's a few items that are obvious on the list, for both the football and basketball programs. 

However, like anyone else, realistic gifts should be requested, although it doesn't hurt to shoot for the moon on a few ideas. 

While five presents may seem like a bit much (after all, Santa has over 100 other college programs to get to throughout the night), three is the perfect number following an . . .  interesting calendar year for Arizona State. More presents may find their way under the tree next year. 

Three Presents Santa Should Deliver Arizona State on Christmas

A healthy Marcus Bagley: ASU's basketball team continues to build chemistry together in the absence of their best player, as Bagley builds his way back from a knee injury that's now kept him out for over a month. 

The Sun Devils, enduring a tough stretch of games to begin the 2021-22 season, are now battle-tested and their play in recent games shows despite the end result on the scoreboard now telling the full story. 

However, results only matter in the end. Arizona State needs Bagley back as soon as possible to rebound from a poor start and find themselves as competitors when tournament time nears. 

The Sun Devils perhaps got lucky when games against ranked Pac-12 foes USC and UCLA were postponed thanks to COVID issues from the two California schools. Can Bagley be back for their next game against Arizona on Jan. 8?

Relaxed punishment from the NCAA: Make no mistake, the NCAA's investigation initially beginning in June is still ongoing against Arizona State's football program as this is written. 

Potential punishments for the Sun Devils are currently unknown, and can range from a variety of factors. Is there actually evidence for ASU to be found guilty? How cooperative has the school and president Michael Crow been during the process? 

The NCAA has been very inconsistent with recent punishments, and with no guidelines for any school committing violations during a COVID recruiting period, there's really no guidelines for what to expect when the investigation is concluded.

However, one could argue a black eye has already presented itself in terms of ASU's recent recruiting woes. What's a handful of scholarships lost and maybe even a small bowl ban in the grand scheme of things? 

Success in the transfer portal: A lack of recruiting class and top talent leaving the program either through the portal itself or simply departing for the NFL Draft leaves a lot of holes for Arizona State to fill. 

Head coach Herm Edwards knows exactly what will be pivotal for ASU to maintain a baseline of success heading into 2022, and that's another season of hitting on players that transferred in. 

Guys such as Jalin Conyers, Kellen Diesch, DeAndre Pierce and Henry Hattis are transfers that were able to pay dividends, and in order for the Sun Devils to have any hope of competing in 2022 with a severely impacted recruiting class, incoming transfers will indeed be looked at for contributions right away. 

With a team returning players such as quarterback Jayden Daniels and defensive lineman Jermayne Lole, the Sun Devils feel as if the roster is still very much held together despite significant losses across the board. 

However, should players arriving fresh into Tempe via the transfer portal be able to hit the ground running, Arizona State will again be in business at the beginning of the season.