With defensive linemen Kyle Caldwell and DeWayne Hollyfield out of the lineup due to injury and academic issues, respectively, Arizona State had to lean on its depth during Saturday’s 35-31 loss to Louisiana State.
Standing out among those who saw time along the defensive front was end Mike Talbot. In his first start since lining up at fullback in a 2003 game against Utah State, the senior out of Avondale Agua Fria High School recorded a careerhigh seven tackles, including two for losses out of Caldwell’s end spot.
He had a total of five tackles in 11 games last fall. It was his first season on the defensive side of the ball.
"The fact that Mike stepped in, in that caliber of a game and had that much production . . . I was real pleased," ASU coach Dirk Koetter said. "For a guy who’s been in your program for (four) years and has done all the things (you ask), I’m happy for him.
"We’ve been very fortunate. When we’ve had guys have to step up, they’ve done a nice job. That’s a sign that your team’s getting deeper and your guys are getting better. Mike’s a good example of that."
D IS FOR DALE
Linebacker Dale Robinson was named Pac-10 defensive player of the week for his performance against LSU. The senior had a game-high 15 tackles, 11 solo, including 2 1 /2 tackles for losses, one quarterback sack and one forced fumble.
"If you saw the game, Dale was all over the field," Koetter said. "I’m impressed with the Pac-10. The Pac-10 does not usually award the player of the week to a team that loses a game. I just can’t imagine that many people played better than Dale, win or lose, because he was everywhere."
Cal wide receiver Robert Jordan was named the conference’s offensive player of the week. Among those he beat out for the award was ASU quarterback Sam Keller.
Robinson and Keller were the team’s defensive and offensive players of the game, respectively. The team did not name a special teams player of the game. Scout team awards for the week went to quarterback Derek Shaw on offense, end Tyrice Thompson on defense and receiver Jeff Gray on special teams. Robinson was selected as the team’s weekly single-game captain.