Arrow-right Camera
Go to e-Edition Sign up for newsletters Customer service
Subscribe now
Sports >  WSU football

Recap and highlights: Washington State cruises to 34-21 win over Arizona State after commanding first half

UPDATED: Sat., Oct. 30, 2021

Washington State lineman Carter Carlson (63) lifts his quarterback Jayden deLaura (4) in the air after deLaura threw a touchdown pass against Arizona State during the first half of an NCAA college football game, Saturday, Oct 30, 2021, in Tempe, Ariz.   (Associated Press)
Washington State lineman Carter Carlson (63) lifts his quarterback Jayden deLaura (4) in the air after deLaura threw a touchdown pass against Arizona State during the first half of an NCAA college football game, Saturday, Oct 30, 2021, in Tempe, Ariz.  (Associated Press)




Washington State’s defense forced three turnovers on Arizona State’s first three possessions and the Cougars were able to mount a 28-point lead in the first half before cruising to a 34-21 win at Sun Devil Stadium in Tempe.

Saturday’s result moves the Cougars (5-4, 4-2) one victory shy of bowl eligibility and keeps them squarely in the race for a Pac-12 North title. WSU is still one game behind both Oregon schools in the Pac-12 standings, but the Cougars will have a chance to hand Oregon (6-1, 3-1) its second conference loss and steal the head-to-head tiebreaker when the teams meet on Nov. 13 in Eugene. WSU already has the tiebreaker on Oregon State (5-2, 3-1).

The Sun Devils coughed up the ball twice on their first three plays, with defensive tackle Amir Mujahid and linebacker Justus Rogers recovering fumbles in ASU territory. The Cougars capitalized on the second turnover and quarterback Jayden de Laura secured an early 7-0 lead with a 1-yard touchdown run.

The turnover-prone Sun Devils committed another error on the third possession when quarterback Jayden Daniels was intercepted by WSU cornerback Chau Smith-Wade. Six plays later, de Laura hit wide receiver Travell Harris in stride in the end zone for a 28-yard touchdown.

Deon McIntosh punched in a 1-yard touchdown to make it a three-score game and the Cougars established a 28-0 lead on de Laura’s 45-yard strike to Calvin Jackson Jr., just three plays after ASU’s Daniyel Ngate committed the Sun Devils’ fourth turnover of the game, losing a fumble at the 49-yard line.

For the first time in his career Jackson Jr. went over 100 receiving yards, hauling in eight passes for 139 yards and one touchdown. The senior from Florida is now up to 667 yards on the season with five touchdowns. Harris caught three passes for 49 yards and recorded his sixth touchdown of the year.

De Laura, who entered the game as the Pac-12 leader in touchdown passes, finished 17 of 27 passing for 234 yards, two touchdowns and one interception. ASU’s Daniels was 23 of 35 for 228 yards, one touchdown and two interceptions.

WSU came into the week tied with Oregon for the conference lead in turnovers forced but grabbed sole possession of that category with five takeaways against ASU, improving the season total to 21.  Jahad Woods led the Cougars with 10 tackles while Daniel Isom contributed nine more with a forced fumble and half tackle-for-loss. Ron Stone Jr. had six tackles including two tackles-for-loss and one sack.

First quarter

14:11 - WSU 0, ASU 0: Justus Rogers forces a fumble on the second play of the game, recovered by WSU at the Sun Devil 39.

12:33 - WSU 0, ASU 0: Jayden de Laura completes a screen pass to Calvin Jackson Jr. on fourth-and-3, but comes up short for a turnover on downs. No first down for the Cougs after the fumble recovery. ASU starts on its 31.

12:22 - WSU 0, ASU 0: WSU forces ANOTHER fumble on the next Sun Devil play. Justus Rogers, who forced the first fumble, recovers to the ASU 20.

10:40 - WSU 7, ASU 0: Jayden de Laura keeps a speed option for a 2-yard rushing touchdown. De Laura completed a 5-yard pass to Travell Harris to the goal line to set up the play. Cougs capitalize on the turnover this time. 

9:35 - WSU 7, ASU 0: Jayden Daniels picks up a big first down on third and long with a 14-yard completion to Curtis Hodges.

4:50 - WSU 7, ASU 0: Jayden Daniels completes a 6-yard pass to LV Bunkley-Shelton for a first down on fourth-and-5 to the WSU 30. 

4:16 - WSU 7, ASU 0: Chau Smith-Wade intercepts Jayden Daniels pass at the WSU 13 for the Cougs’ third turnover of the quarter. Ideal start for the WSU defense.

3:15 - WSU 7, ASU 0: Jayden de Laura completes a 30-yard pass over the middle to a wide open Calvin Jackson Jr. Big play as the Cougs are driving with momentum.

1:15 - WSU 14, ASU 0: Jayden de Laura lofts a perfect pass 28-yards into the endzone to Travell Harris for a touchdown. Harris has six on the year.


 Second quarter

12:33 - WSU 14, ASU 0: Daniel Isom drops DeaMonte Trayanum for a 2-yard loss on fourth down and the Cougar defense comes away with another big stop. WSU ball on its 18.

11:44 - WSU 14, ASU 0: Jayden de Laura tries a shovel screen to Max Borghi on third down and it bounces off the running back to ASU’s Merlin Robertson for an interception. Sun Devils start on the WSU 12.

10:50 - WSU 14, ASU 0: A false start moves the Sun Devils back, and Cristian Zendejas misses a 32-yard field goal. Cougars defense doesn’t budge after the turnover and ASU is unable to capitalize on prime field position.

8:02 - WSU 14, ASU 0: Deon McIntosh powers ahead to convert a fourth-and-1 run. Cougs drive continues at the ASU 40.

7:26 - WSU 14, ASU 0: Calvin Jackson Jr. makes a great adjustment in the air to come down with a 34-yard pass from Jayden de Laura down the left sideline to the ASU 6.

5:09 - WSU 21, ASU 0: Deon McIntosh punches in a 1-yard score after a defensive holding penalty gifted the Cougs a first down on third and goal.

2:37 - WSU 21, ASU 0: A holding penalty calls back a long ASU touchdown and on the next play Kyle Thornton forces a fumble on a screen pass, recovered by Ron Stone Jr. at the ASU 49. Cougars have forced four turnovers so far, looking to hold the shutout into halftime.

1:50 - WSU 28, ASU 0: Jayden de Laura completes a 45-yard touchdown to Calvin Jackson Jr. Cougars celebrate in the endzone to the sound of a stunned stadium in Tempe. Easily WSU’s best half of football this season, as de Laura is up to 180 yards with two touchdowns – 127 of those yards to Jackson Jr.

0:23 - WSU 28, ASU 7: ASU gets on the board with a 12-yard touchdown from Jayden Daniels to LV Bunkley-Shelton. Sun Devils get some life after a dominating first half by WSU.


Washington State dominated the first half behind four turnovers from its defense. Arizona State out-gained the Cougs 243-236, but had three fumbles – including two on the first three plays – an interception, and missed a 32-yard field goal.

The Cougars will receive to start the second half. Jayden de Laura has completed 12 of 18 attempts for 180 yards and two touchdowns, while Calvin Jackson Jr. has been the main target with six catches for 127 yards and a score. Deon McIntosh has been the most effective back after missing last week with an injury, he has 45 yards and a touchdown on nine attempts.

Third quarter

12:52 - WSU 28, ASU 7: Max Borghi picks up 17 yards on third-and-19, but the Cougars are forced to punt. ASU takes over on its own 32.

12:05 - WSU 28, ASU 7: The Cougar defense forces a three-and-out and Travell Harris calls for a fair catch on the punt at the WSU 11.

6:19 - WSU 28, ASU 7: Brennan Jackson and Travion Brown stuff Jayden Daniels in the backfield on third down and force a Sun Devil punt that goes out for a touchback.

4:24 - WSU 28, ASU 7: The Cougars’ drive stalls near midfield and punt to the ASU 17. Five straight punts to start the second half.

2:16 - WSU 28, ASU 7: Jaylen Watson intercepts Jayden Daniels’ pass to the ASU 45 and the Cougar defense has forced five turnovers in the game.

Fourth quarter

14:54 - WSU 31, ASU 7: Dean Janikowski’s 40-yard field goal attempt is good. 

13:13 - WSU 31, ASU 7: The Cougar defense forces another punt. WSU has held the Sun Devils to 57 total yards in the second half.

6:53 - WSU 34, ASU 7: Dean Janikowski’s 32-yard field goal is good.

4:54 - WSU 34, ASU 14: DeaMonte Trayanum runs in a 1-yard touchdown for the Sun Devils.

1:38 - WSU 34, ASU 14: Dean Janikowski’s 44-yard field goal is no good.

0:28 - WSU 34, ASU 21: Arizona State tacks on its second garbage time touchdown with a 11-yard pass from Andre Johnson to Trenton Bourguet. Hopefully someone had that on their fantasy college football team. 


Washington State (4-4, 3-2 Pac-12) travels to Tempe to play Arizona State (5-2, 3-1) on FS1 today. The kickoff has been moved back to 12:20 p.m., according to ASU. 

The Cougars are looking to extend their conference win streak to four games, as Jake Dickert serves his second game as interim coach following the firing of Nick Rolovich on Oct. 18.

WSU narrowly lost to BYU 21-19 last Saturday, while the Sun Devils gave up 28 unanswered second half points in a 35-21 loss to Utah. Both WSU and ASU have similar resumes, with a win over Stanford and losses to BYU and Utah.

Despite the similar results against common opponents, the Cougars are a 16 point underdog and given a 13.3% on ESPN’s matchup predictor. WSU has only lost one game by that margin, 45-14 to USC, when quarterback Jayden de Laura missed the second half with an injury.

Spooky socials

With kickoff on Halloeve, both WSU and ASU’s football twitter accounts got in the spirit with themed graphic art. The Cougs even followed a recent trend by putting their mascot Butch in several horror movie scenes, inspired by @jaythechou photoshopping Paddington the bear into movies for over 230 straight days.

Turning up the heat

The forecast for Tempe, Arizona on Saturday is sunny and a high of 87. Meanwhile in Pullman, the high of the week has been 57 with mixed rain. 

Series history

Ryan Leaf unsnaps his helmet after giving up a fumble which was returned for a TD in the ASU game in Tempe on Nov. 1, 1997. (The Spokesman-Review)
Ryan Leaf unsnaps his helmet after giving up a fumble which was returned for a TD in the ASU game in Tempe on Nov. 1, 1997. (The Spokesman-Review)

ASU holds a 28-15-2 series lead over WSU. The two teams have played once in the past four seasons, with the Sun Devils winning 38-34 in 2019. Before that, Mike Leach had put together back-to-back victories in 2015-16, breaking a three-game win streak by ASU. The longest win streak was set at seven games by ASU from 2004-10.

The Cougars’ lone regular season loss in the 1997 season came at the hands of ASU 44-31 in Tempe on Nov. 1., though the Cougars would go on to play No. 1 Michigan in the Rose Bowl and lose 21-16.

Team stats

Scoring WSU ASU
Points Per Game 24.88 31.57
Points Allowed Per Game 25.13 18.86
Total Yards 371.9 433.9
Yards Passing 262.5 230.0
Yards Rushing 109.4 203.9
Yards Allowed 390.9 319.9
Pass Yards Allowed 225.4 190.7
Rush Yards Allowed 165.5 129.1

Individual leaders

PASSING Att.-Comp. Yards TD Int.
Jayden de Laura (WSU) 224-143 1,733 15 6
Jayden Daniels (ASU) 168-116 1,507 6 3
RUSHING Carries Yards TD
Max Borghi (WSU) 100 504 8
Rachaad White (ASU) 86 483 9
RECEIVING Receptions Yards TD
Travell Harris (WSU) 51 525 5
Curtis Hodges (ASU) 16 331 1

Game preview

More on the Cougs

The Spokesman-Review Newspaper

Local journalism is essential.

Give directly to The Spokesman-Review's Northwest Passages community forums series -- which helps to offset the costs of several reporter and editor positions at the newspaper -- by using the easy options below. Gifts processed in this system are not tax deductible, but are predominately used to help meet the local financial requirements needed to receive national matching-grant funds.

Active Person

Subscribe to the Cougs newsletter

Get the latest Cougs headlines delivered to your inbox as they happen.