December 21, 2004
Arizona State offensive line coach Brent Myers must feel like Bill Murray in “Groundhog Day.'' He's lived through this scenario before — more than once.
For the third time in the last five years, Myers will coach his last game of the season against Purdue in a bowl game when ASU meets the Boilermakers in the Dec. 31 Sun Bowl. And if the score winds up being 34-24, he'll really start to wonder.
Myers, who spent three years at Washington (2000-02) before joining the Sun Devils in 2003, was the Huskies’ offensive line coach when they squared off with Drew Brees and Purdue in the 2000 Rose Bowl — which was won by Washington, 34-24. Two years later, the two teams met up again in the 2002 Sun Bowl and this time the Boilermakers won by the same 34-24 margin.
“Every time I see Purdue, it seems like there's a month to get ready,'' Myers said. “I'm looking at this film and saying, ‘I've done this before.’
“(Purdue defensive coordinator) Brock Spack is doing some different things now; they are a little bit more of a 4-3 (alignment) than they used to be, but it's the same basic principle. He has a talented group of kids who play very hard.''
Despite losing seven defensive players to the NFL after last season, Purdue ranked 15th nationally in scoring defense (allowing 16.3 points per game) and all 11 starters are expected back next season.
“They've done a good job recruiting and a good job keeping the kids and developing them,'' Myers said. “We have a lot of respect for what they do.''
GOING TO IOWA
ASU freshman Max Hall will depart for his two-year Mormon mission after the Sun Bowl. The Mountain View High School product will be operating out of Des Moines, Iowa, until December 2006, when he will return to school and rejoin the Sun Devils for spring football in 2007.
“I am happy about staying in the (United States). There will be places where I can work out and eat well. But for a guy who grew up in Arizona, it's going to be cold there,'' Hall said. “I'm looking forward to it. There is a new requirement for the missionaries to work out every morning, so I'll get a chance to throw the ball and keep my arm in shape.''
The Sun Devils on Monday began to put in the game plan for Purdue. ASU will practice again today and Wednesday, take two days off for Christmas and head to El Paso Sunday for the Sun Bowl.
“We've been in kind of a dysfunctional state with coaches being gone recruiting and the players finishing up finals, but now we have nothing to worry about except football,'' ASU coach Dirk Koetter said.