Men’s basketball: Arizona State tops Kansas, moves into top-5 of AP poll
The Sun Devils are off to their best start since the 1974-75 season
Arizona State Men's basketball is off to a historic start for the 2017-2018 season. The Sun Devils beat the No.2 ranked Kansas Jayhawks 95-85 at Allen Fieldhouse on Sunday afternoon to move to 9-0 and remain undefeated.
Tra Holder led the team with 29 points and seven assists, as he played all 40 minutes of the win. Shannon Evans II added 22 points, and Remy Martin scored a career-high 21 points off the bench to aid ASU in their 10-point win.
The Sun Devils shot 51 percent from the field, and 50 percent from three-point range (14-28).
Kansas made their first six shots from the field, and jumped out to an early 15-2 lead. But ASU didn't rattle, and kept their composure. They cut the halftime deficit to 40-37, and strongly outplayed Kansas in the second half, scoring 58 points en route to their 10-point victory.
Head coach Bobby Hurley expressed how proud he was of his guys after the win. "I didn't have to coach a whole lot tonight. These guys right here deserve all the credit," he said.
"It was a special win for us and our program… anytime you get a win in that type of environment, you're excited to see how the rest of our season will progress," Hurley added.
After the upset, Twitter supported ASU's early season success. Students, athletes, and former ASU basketball players expressed their joy. Most notably, NBA superstar James Harden, who was a former Sun Devil.
The Sun Devils are off to their best start since the 1974-75 season, and it showed in the AP Men's Basketball Poll on Monday. Arizona State climbed 11 spots, making them part of the top-5 in the rankings.
Going into the game, ASU was ranked 16th in the country, and now they're number five in the poll. The voters valued other marquee wins that the Devils had over Xavier, Kansas State, St. Johns and San Diego State, who have all been top programs in recent years.
Arizona State's ability to stay within themselves and follow Hurley's blueprint has been a key to their success. And if they continue to do so, watch out for ASU come Tournament time.
Up Next: Arizona State returns home to play Vanderbilt at Wells Fargo Arena.
(Cover photo: Sun Devil Athletics)