Tempe, AZ – After trailing the entire game, Arizona State (2-0) came back from a 13-3 deficit to upset No. 15 Michigan State 16-13 on Saturday night in Tempe. ASU sealed the deal with a 28-yard Brandon Ruiz field goal as the clock ran out, moving the Sun Devils to 10-0 all-time against Big 10 teams at Sun Devil Stadium.
“I actually didn’t feel that much pressure, honestly,” Ruiz said. “Eno came and said I love you no matter what. I usually get nervous sometimes and I can feel my legs shaking, but nothing this time.”
Both Arizona State and Michigan State struggled early offensively, remaining scoreless in the first quarter. The Spartans jumped on board first, taking a 3-0 lead with a 37- yard field goal at the beginning of the second quarter.
ASU started to connect offensively after senior quarterback Manny Wilkins completed a 23-yard pass to a wide open Brandon Aiyuk, who shakes two defenders before being brought down. But this still wasn’t enough as the Sun Devils remained scoreless and trailing by three going into the half.
“All the mistakes that we made, all the throws that I missed, the interception; at the end of the day we came in at halftime, we made the adjustments we needed to make and we won the game,” Wilkins said. “That’s all that matters at the end of the day, we are 2-0 now.”
The second half was a better start for both teams as Michigan State opened the third quarter with another Matt Coghlin field goal, which was soon followed by the Sun Devils first points of the game. Ruiz made a 49-yard field goal to make the score 6-3.
With just under two minutes remaining in the third quarter, the Spartans score the first touchdown of the game giving them a 10-point lead over the Sun Devils. Ruiz cut the deficit to 13-6 after successfully completing a 24-yard field goal to start the fourth quarter.
The biggest drive for ASU, was a two-play, 65-yard drive in the fourth quarter. One of which Wilkins launched a 27-yard bullet down the field to his superstar receiver N’Keal Harry, who adjusts in mid-air, catching the perfect pass over the defenders shoulder, to tie the game 13-13.
“That touchdown was really just me and Manny being on the same page,” Harry said. “He trusted me to come down with the ball and he put the ball in the perfect spot. He put it in a spot where the defender really didn’t have much chance to getting it.”
As time runs out in the final quarter, Arizona State was first and goal at the six yard line. Instead of going for a touchdown to win the game, the Sun Devils knelt three times to milk the clock to 00:03 remaining, setting up the perfect scenario for Ruiz to nail the winning field goal. Making the score 16-13 Sun Devils.
The Sun Devils will travel to San Diego next week to take on Aztecs