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Arizona State trainer Herm Edwards made his first look at Pac-12 media day.
Doug Haller, azcentral sports activities

LOS ANGELES – At his first Pac-12 Media Day, Herm Edwards sat down on a small level and shifted into tv mode.

“Am I supposed to be looking at you?” the first-year Arizona State trainer stated to a digicam guy. “They got all these cameras, I don’t know who to look at.”

While he’s no longer positive, everybody else is ready. Pretty a lot, all of the convention – possibly all of faculty soccer – is looking at the experiment Arizona State introduced final December, hiring the 64-year-old Edwards, then an NFL analyst with ESPN, to exchange Todd Graham.

Former Pac-12 trainer and longtime analyst Rick Neuheisel on Wednesday known as the Edwards rent some of the season’s 3 maximum intriguing tale strains, becoming a member of LSU trainer Ed Orgeron and Oklahoma quarterback Kyler Murray, who will depart the game after this season to pursue skilled baseball.

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“Because it’s so out of the box,” Neuheisel defined to azcentral sports activities. “And for me, it’s such great news because the fired football coach, or the old-man football coach, had been a forgotten deal. A dinosaur. They’re extinct, and now Herm gets this chance.”

These are atypical instances for the Pac-12.

Since final season’s dismal bowl efficiency, the convention has taken a countrywide beating. The Pac-12 Network – nonetheless providing restricted viewing – has no longer delivered to colleges the money that was once anticipated. Late kickoff instances stay an issue of dialogue.

Asked the place the Pac-12 may well be missing at the box, Pac-12 Networks analyst and previous Oregon defensive coordinator Nick Aliotti stated the convention lacks “big-body guys,” which hurts towards big-time fighters. Just glance again to Washington in the 2016 College Football Playoff, he stated.

“Against Alabama, they had no chance to get any plays started because of the big-body guys up front,” Aliotti stated, referring to the Crimson Tide’s 24-7 win.

Five Pac-12 colleges open with new coaches. UCLA’s Chip Kelly – an offensive genius right through his training days at Oregon – was once the largest catch. Arizona’s Kevin Sumlin may have made probably the most sense, however Edwards may well be taking pictures probably the most consideration.

Halfway thru Wednesday’s match, Arizona State senior quarterback Manny Wilkins was once requested which matter he have been requested about probably the most.

“Coach Herm,” he stated.

Outside of Kelly and Southern California’s Clay Helton – the native college coaches –Edwards attracted the largest media scrum on the major level, abnormal taking into account Pac-12 media picked the Sun Devils to end final within the South department, trailing (so as) USC, Utah, Arizona, UCLA and Colorado. It’s the lowest Arizona State has been slotted because the convention break up into divisions in 2011.

About that.

Edwards – who spent 30 years within the NFL as a participant and trainer – knew how to play the media ballot. He acted as though he weren’t mindful.

“Somebody’s got to be first, somebody’s got to be sixth,” Edwards stated. “OK. That’s great. Doesn’t matter to me. We got our own aspirations.”

Will the Sun Devils use that as motivation?

“I would hope that if you need someone else to motivate you – that’s not good,” Edwards stated.

Perhaps the most efficient information: Unlike the North department – the place Washington is an amazing favourite – the South isn’t as transparent. Five groups won a minimum of one first-place vote, the 1st time that’s came about. The forecast is so murky that after requested to identify a department darkish horse, Fox analyst Joel Klatt to start with discussed 3 groups – Utah, Colorado and Arizona – ahead of selecting Colorado.

“They’re an interesting team,” Klatt stated.

Others sided with Arizona, merely as a result of Sumlin and Khalil Tate, perhaps the game’s maximum dynamic quarterback. It makes for an impossible to resist pairing.

“I’m going to get to interview Kevin here in a little bit,” stated Neuheisel, status close to radio row.

“And my biggest question for him is this: The (Arizona) opportunity presented itself so he jumped. Was he looking forward to letting a little time pass? Because if you reverse what happened at Texas A&M and take his last season and make it his first season and make his first season his last, we’re talking about one of the hottest coaches in football. The problem was that (11-2) in Year 1, and it created these wild expectations.”

Those within the basement haven’t any expectancies, a minimum of no longer externally. And in many ways, that gets rid of drive. Neuheisel’s questions for Edwards:

Given his absence from the varsity recreation, how a lot has the sport modified? And possibly extra vital, how will he do in recruiting? It’s transparent Edwards will do neatly in dwelling rooms, however can ASU get within the proper dwelling rooms?

“That’s what makes Chris Petersen so good,” Neuheisel stated, referring to the Washington trainer. “I don’t know if he’s a great salesman, but he gets in the right living rooms.”

Up on level, Edwards gave the impression unfazed.

“I’ve been good enough in my lifetime to bet on me because I know the work I’m going to put in and what it takes,” he stated. “And if it doesn’t turn out that way, I can live with that. … But I’m going to bet on me because that’s all you can bet on.”

IMAGES FROM PAC-12 MEDIA DAY

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