Don Hansen

“2014 Holiday Party 12 Pack of Plays” – Play #11


Once again . . . The ASU Devils Den has come back . . . for Holiday Parties!

Every December weekend is full of Holiday Parties, and this year, the ASU Devils Den happily and merrily brings back its “Holiday Party 12 Pack of Plays”. These are the top 12 plays from the Arizona State season that you can enjoy talking about over delicious holiday cocktails with friends and family. Our tip this year is to watch out for the Santa’s slurring out “Happy Hollandaise” as those Santas tend to get grabby toward the end of the night.

This year, the “Holiday Party 12 Pack of Plays” will count down from Play #12 to our #1 Play as voted on by the ASU Devils Den team.

Previous Play: #12 – Brown’s One Handed Interception

Play #11

Heading into 2014, no player had bigger shoes to fill than true freshman Tashon Smallwood. Not only did the Fresno, California Central East High School star take over two-time Pac-12 Pat Tillman Defensive Player of the Year Will Sutton’s “Tiger” defensive line position, Smallwood wore Sutton’s popular jersey #90. Smallwood made no bigger play than his tremendous effort during the first quarter against Notre Dame. Smallwood’s sack, forced fumble, and fumble recovery is our “ASU Devils Den Holiday Party 12 Pack of Plays” Play #11.

With the game tied 3-3, Smallwood, used his tremendous quickness to loop around the offensive line, trip up Notre Dame quarterback Everett Golson forcing a fumble, and Smallwood swiftly recovered the ball. This play happened in the southern part of the stadium directly in front of the student section and the South End Zone bleaches full of Mustache Nation, Everyday I’m Devilin, and Section 40. The stadium excitement was building, and on the very next play, quarterback Taylor Kelly found Jaelen Strong for a touchdown to put the Sun Devils up 10-3.

It was an up and down year for Smallwood as he spent the first part learning not just the Arizona State scheme but college football in general, but Smallwood finished the year strongly, looking like the hyped prospect. Smallwood finished the year with 17 tackles, 5.5 tackles for loss, and two sacks. However, in just the last four games of the season, a time when true freshman often start to tire out, Smallwood had 10 of his 17 tackles, four of his 5.5 tackles for loss, and the two sacks. The “ASU Devils Den Holiday Party 12 Pack of Plays” Play #11 was not just critical to the Sun Devils defeat of the Fighting Irish, but it was a key play to energize the end of the Smallwood’s true freshman season.


About Don Hansen

Don Hansen

Don is a 2003 graduate of Arizona State University where he spent four years sitting in the front rows of many ASU athletic events leading the rowdy student section. Now, Don co-hosts the "ASU Devils Den" podcast covering every detail of ASU football. Don works and resides in Gilbert, Arizona with his beautiful Sun Devil wife and their two beautiful daughters!

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