ASU Basketball: Looking back at the last two LA road trips

LOS ANGELES, CA - JANUARY 19: Lonzo Ball /
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LOS ANGELES, CA – JANUARY 19: Lonzo Ball /

Last season, victories over UCLA and USC helped ASU basketball advance to the NCAA Tournament. This week, the challenge will be more arduous on the road.

Arizona State has seemingly rediscovered its identity.

Following last week’s sweep of the Oregon schools, the Sun Devils (13-5, 4-2 Pac-12) have risen to third in the Pac-12 standings. And for the first time since December, the team has found the physical, overwhelming style that initially gave it hopes of taking the league’s crown.

Now winners of four of its last five contests, ASU enters this week with hopes of conquering a recurring challenge – winning on the road. A loss to Stanford on Jan. 12 added to a 35-week program drought without a road sweep, something coach Bobby Hurley would like to break in his fourth season.

To do so, the Sun Devils will need to knock off reputable foes – the Los Angeles schools. Last season, a sweep in Tempe provided the jolt that squeezed ASU into its first NCAA Tournament berth since 2014.

But in wholesome memory, both series haven’t been so kind.

On Thursday, the Sun Devils will face a team that has dominated them all-time. Dating back to 1950, UCLA is 67-20 against ASU, including a 32-6 record at home. The Devils haven’t won a contest at Pauley Pavilion since Jan. 17, 2009, when James Harden was still in school.

ASU has fared better against Troy, but the numbers still aren’t favorable.  The Sun Devils are 41-54 versus the Trojans, sporting a 14-30 record on the road. However, ASU has bested ‘SC in three of the last eight road contests.

No matter this week’s result, the tension is sure to be high. If Tra Holder doesn’t bank home a buzzer beater against the Trojans, USC might have received ASU’s at-large bid last season. Coach Andy Enfield, Nick Rakocevic and others likely haven’t withdrawn it from their memory bank.

Before the Sun Devils take the court tomorrow night, here’s a look at ASU’s previous trips with Hurley to the ‘City of Angels’ and the results.