ASU basketball: The hottest game in town

Posted: Updated:
A packed Wells Fargo Arena saw ASU beat Vanderbilt on Sunday. (Source: 3TV/CBS 5) A packed Wells Fargo Arena saw ASU beat Vanderbilt on Sunday. (Source: 3TV/CBS 5)
Sunday official attendance was 10,797. (Source: 3TV/CBS 5) Sunday official attendance was 10,797. (Source: 3TV/CBS 5)
ASU head coach Bobby Hurley, no stranger to great home crowds himself, took notice of the fans. (Source: 3TV/CBS 5) ASU head coach Bobby Hurley, no stranger to great home crowds himself, took notice of the fans. (Source: 3TV/CBS 5)
D-backs pitcher Archie Bradley, drawn-in by the excitement of Sun Devil basketball, took part in the 942 Crew’s famed "Curtain of Distraction." (Source: 3TV/CBS 5) D-backs pitcher Archie Bradley, drawn-in by the excitement of Sun Devil basketball, took part in the 942 Crew’s famed "Curtain of Distraction." (Source: 3TV/CBS 5)
TEMPE, AZ (3TV/CBS 5) -

Lance Venable has seen Wells Fargo Arena rock for an ASU basketball game before - but never in December and never when the opponent wasn’t named “Arizona.”

“It was about as wild as I can remember for any game there,” said Venable, who’s been a season ticket holder since 1985. “It was about as close as you can get to when UofA comes to play.”

Venable was a part of a packed house Sunday to watch ASU improve to 10-0 with a 76-64 win over Vanderbilt.

[RELATED: No. 5 Arizona State rallies to beat Vanderbilt 76-64]

The Sun Devils, off to their best start in school history rose to No. 3 in this week’s AP college basketball poll.

[READ MORE: ASU men's basketball jumps to No. 3 in AP Poll]

Sunday’s game, despite a noon tip-off, opposite an Arizona Cardinals game on television no less, was the Valley’s first chance to see the Sun Devils in person since their upset win over Kansas seven days earlier – and the crowd, the performance and the atmosphere did not disappoint.

“Just for a game against a 3-6 Vanderbilt team,” said Venable. “I mean we would have been lucky on normal years to get maybe 3,000 or 4,000 people at the game but this was just crazy, really crazy.”

Sunday official attendance was 10,797 and ASU head coach Bobby Hurley, no stranger to great home crowds himself, took notice.

“It was an unbelievable crowd,” said Hurley who played his college ball at Duke in front of the legendary Cameron Crazies. “To see us go on that second half run and to hear the roar of the crowd like I haven’t heard since I’ve been here – that would be unbelievable if we could keep that going. What an advantage.”

[MORE: College sports stories]

Sunday’s game in Tempe just felt big. New ASU head football coach Herm Edwards sat courtside while D-backs pitcher Archie Bradley, drawn-in by the excitement of Sun Devil basketball, took part in the 942 Crew’s famed "Curtain of Distraction."

“You look around this place and you feel the atmosphere,” said Bradley who attended the University of Oklahoma. “You see what the coach has going on here and the players in this place – it’s legit right now. This is awesome.”

The Sun Devil team could be called "awesome" right now too. In fact, one of their longtime fans is already thinking big.

“I told my son back in May that I thought we were going to the Final Four,” said Venable. “He said, ‘Dad, you’re crazy,’ but now he actually believes that too. If that happens I don’t know what I’ll do. I really don’t."

ASU hosts Longwood Tuesday night at Wells Fargo Arena at 7 p.m.

Click/tap here to download the free azfamily mobile app.

Copyright 2017 KPHO/KTVK (KPHO Broadcasting Corporation). All rights reserved.