The 'intangibles' don't favor Arizona State

September, 20, 2008
9/20/08
7:37
PM ET

Posted by ESPN.com's Ted Miller

TEMPE, Ariz. -- About the only thing that favors Arizona State tonight against No. 3 Georgia is the temperature, which stands at 99 degrees an hour before kickoff.

Not that it's difficult to imagine how the Sun Devils might beat the Bulldogs.

1. ASU quarterback Rudy Carpenter picks apart a fair-to-middling Georgia secondary.

2. Georgia's young offensive line makes enough mistakes that quarterback Matthew Stafford and running back Knowshon Moreno never establish their rhythm.

3. The Bulldogs give up a bunch of turnovers. The Sun Devils do not.

4. This is college football. Anything can happen.

But, if you watched UNLV mount an 18-play, 88-yard drive and a 10-play, 73-yard drive to force overtime in Sun Devil Stadium, it's hard to imagine that Moreno and Stafford won't be able to consistently make plays, even though ASU gets linebackers Gerald Munns and Morris Wooten and defensive end Jamarr Robinson back.

On the other side of the ball, if the Sun Devils can't run against UNLV, then how can they be expected to run against an SEC defense?

And if Carpenter is forced to pass just about every play, how can the questionable offensive line protect him against an athletic front with its ears pinned back?

As for the heat: This isn't Colorado coming to Tempe. The Bulldogs are used to the heat and humidity of the deep South. They won't lose because they're sweating.

Moreover, the Bulldogs are expecting 10,000 fans -- maybe as many as 15,000, according to some estimates -- to show up to support their beloved Dawgs.

And it's not like, in any event, that UGA is unfamiliar with hostile stadiums. They are 26-4 on the road under coach Mark Richt and are 9-2 vs. ranked teams.

This is college football. Anything can happen.

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