With USC facing Arizona State in their second Pac-10 game of the season, we brought in Vince Marotta of Fanster.com to break down the Sun Devils and Saturday's matchup.
Q: The Sun Devils have been a bit of a surprise early this season as evident by their 10-3 record. How has this been possible?
A: Most of it has been schedule. ASU has played quality opponents like Duke, BYU and Baylor, but they are 0-3 against those teams. They do have some "o.k." wins, including victories against San Diego State, TCU and LSU, but the majority of their wins have come against teams like Western Illinois, Texas State, Delaware State and USC Upstate.
Q: The Pac-10 is clearly in a down year and with ASU's strong start, how confident are the fans in Tempe regarding the Sun Devils' chances of competing for the conference crown?
A: I think there's a guarded optimism about the Sun Devils' chances. I think most people still think that Washington and Cal are the teams to beat in the conference, and that USC and UCLA could hit their stride. But the rest of the conference is pretty even, so if ASU can win the close games it will certainly have a share of, they should be in the top four or five of the conference.
Q: How have the Sun Devils replaced the scoring production of James Harden?
A: It's been by committee really, but nobody can be counted on to be the go-to guy that Harden was in his two seasons in Tempe. Derek Glasser has taken on a more active role in scoring, as has junior guard Jamelle McMillan, but nobody on the team scores more than 11.8 points per game (Kuksiks and Glasser).
Q: What are your thoughts on the point guard matchup of Mike Gerrity-Derek Glasser?
A: Should be a good one. Two undersized, heady point guards who can score, both play a ton of minutes and rarely make mistakes.
Q: When it's all said and done, who do you see winning this one?
A: USC's been tough since Gerrity joined the fold, and have become a more confident team with wins over Tennessee and UNLV in the last couple of weeks. USC should win this won at the Galen Center.