Kenny Dillingham shoots down talk of QB controversy at Arizona State
Kenny Dillingham said Arizona State had 99 problems in its Week 2 loss to Oklahoma State, but Jaden Rashada wasn’t one of them.
The Sun Devils were held scoreless in the second half over the weekend. A 15-10 halftime lead gave way to a 27-15 loss as the ASU offense stumbled through another clunky day. Arizona State gained just 277 yards of offense. It went 6-for-15 on third downs and then 1-for-5 on fourth downs. Three times the offense failed to convert a third-and-short.
Rashada had bright spots early and a rough close. He finished the day with 16 completions on 29 attempts for 167 yards, one score, and one interception. At one point in the fourth quarter, he missed six consecutive passes.
But Dillingham defended Rashada on Monday when he met with reporters.
“Jaden has done such a phenomenal job,” Dillingham said. “If you watch him play the football games, he has one turnover in two games, he steps up in the pocket, gets hit in the face, delivers throws. The growth he’s made in those two games is incredible. Absolutely incredible. I really could not be more pleased with how he’s played.
“There’s no doubt his future is extremely, extremely, extremely bright.”
Drew Pyne is expected to be available this week, though he’s not yet 100%. He and Rashada were battling for the job before the year, but Pyne hasn’t practiced since a hamstring injury midway through preseason camp.
The first-year ASU coach said he has never been a fan of using multiple quarterbacks in a game. It’s not conducive to maintaining an offensive rhythm, or to keeping a quarterback in rhythm.
Dillingham said ASU needs to be able to run the football better to set up its vertical shot game. The offensive line is also a growing concern. The last thing on his mind, he said, was a quarterback change.
“This has nothing to do with the quarterback,” Dillingham said. “This is a unit that we’ve got to figure out. … It’s a recipe of success, and one person might be so great at all these things but because you don’t have these other things at your arsenal now, this person may not be as successful with this current recipe. You’ve got to be able to adapt to what you have, and then be as successful as possible with it.”
The Sun Devils (1-1) host Fresno State (2-0) at 7:30 p.m. PT on FS1 on Saturday.