Blog

Rush another embarassment for ASU

TEMPE – So we all know ASU will never be called the Harvard of the West.

But its students’ decision to rush the field and behavior on it makes those promos playing during Saturday’s game touting ASU as the Arizona school with the most Flinn Scholars this year, for once, seem pretty ridiculous.

Not that anybody on that football field knows what a Flinn Scholarship is.

First of all, Sun Devil fans rushed the field on a 5-7 team that hasn’t been to a bowl game in nine years and has a propensity to choke in big games. Against a rival they have beaten seven times in nine years.

That one’s certainly not on my list of when it’s appropriate to rush the field.

Can you imagine Arizona basketball fans EVER rushing the court after defeating ASU? The football rivalry may not be that one-sided, but there’s not even a chance.

ASU fans can make the argument that they thought their Devils would be invited to the Tostitos Fiesta Bowl – as one fan I ran into outside the stadium was hoping for with a bag of Tostitos chips in hand – but after then-No. 1 Missouri lost in the Big 12 Championship Game, that scenario was unlikely.

Then again, as pointed out above, we are talking about ASU fans, who will be going to the Holiday Bowl instead.

Although some could call me hypocritical for applauding Arizona’s students for rushing Nov. 3 for Homecoming against UCLA, at least the Bruins sat near the top of the Pacific 10 Conference at the time of the game, even if that rush was a bit of a stretch.

On Saturday, the ASU students formed an ugly ketchup-and-mustard blob and then proceeded to the goal post on the opposite side of the playing surface with security just kind of sitting in the middle of the field.

As a veteran of five field rushes during my time at Arizona, I understand security’s plan of letting the mob celebrate before blocking off five yards at a time, eventually reaching the end zone and forcing the rushers off the field. At ASU, the security personnel seemed as clueless as the fans, with people running around everywhere.

Also, Arizona Stadium’s public address announcer typically repeatedly calls for students to leave the field. At Sun Devil Stadium, the announcer made two announcements – after calling out the winner of the Ben Goo MVP trophy – while chaos reined on the field.

Then another sea of students formed around the goal posts while a bunch of drunken fools danced on the uprights. If, God forbid, those goalposts collapsed, a bigger calamity than the end of Arizona’s football season would have taken place on that field.

A few fights broke out below the goalposts, with security personnel throwing a few punches in the fracas.

If only the Wildcats had showed that much fight in getting into the end zone, maybe Sun Devil fans would have been saved from acting like hooligans.

Than again, there’s a reason they went to ASU.

From the stands

Anybody want to know how to get an ASU female to flip you the bird?

Just walk by their student section waiting to enter the stadium, while dressed in full Arizona attire. …

With most ASU chants involving a combination of swearing and something about U of A, nobody had anything too creative to say. But somebody should give them a geography lesson that Tucson and Nogales are two different cities – and not a very close drive at that. …

One good sign shown on the Jumbotron, though, pleaded for Arizona not to fire Stoops based on his 1-2 – soon to be 1-3 by the end of the night – record against the Sun Devils. It looks like President Robert Shelton and athletic director Jim Livengood are listening.

-Michael Schwartz, assistant sports editor