SALT LAKE CITY (ABC4 Sports) – Having wrapped up non-conference play with a 2-1 record, the #13 Utah football team is ready to take on the Pac-12.

The defending conference champs open Pac-12 play this Saturday against Arizona State. While the Utes have own two in a row, ASU is in turmoil. Head coach Herm Edwards was fired on Sunday, and was replaced by running backs coach Shaun Aguano. But the Utes still think the Sun Devils can be dangerous.

“I know they just lost their head coach, so it’s like a wounded animal in the corner,” said quarterback Cam Rising. It’s dangerous because you never know what to expect. We’ve just got to come ready to go.

“Often times you see where an interim has come in, they circle the wagons and give a supreme effort,” head coach Kyle Whittingham said. “I think Herm had a lot of faith in his coordinators, and I don’t think you’re going to see a lot of change as far as schematics with the offense and defense.”

It took three games, but the Utah wide receivers finally found the end zone against San Diego State, as Solomin Enis caught a touchdown, while DeVaughn Vele caught two. Utah tight ends had caught Cam Rising’s first six touchdowns of the season until then.

“It felt really good,” Vele said. “A lot of hard work went into it. A lot of long hours, trusting the process and waiting for the opportunity.”

“We’ve got playmakers everywhere, and I’m glad we’re spreading it out a little more,” Enis said. “We’re making people fear our team a little bit more. But we got the win at the end of the day, and that’s all that matters.”

“They were giving us some good moves out there,” Rising said. “They were making sure they were getting in and out of their cuts, and making my job that much easier.”

However, Utah has started very slowly the last two games, scoring just 7 points in the first quarter against Southern Utah and SDSU.

“I don’t think it’s crisis mode right now,” Whittingham said about his team’s slow starts. “It’s no time to panic. It’s just been a couple games where we haven’t started like we wanted to. That’s something that we’re going to make a few adjustments in practice this week to try to get a little more jump start early.”

“I’m not really sure why we’re coming out slow,” said Rising, who threw four touchdowns against the Aztecs. “Maybe we’ve just got to get settled in a little earlier.”

This will be a special game for Solomon Enis, an Arizona native playing in his home for the last time.

“Definitely,” he said. “This being my last year, the last time I played there was 2018 as a freshman. So going back, playing in front of my family and friends for the last time, I’m excited. And I’m excited for our team and the opportunity to play down there.”

Utah will kick off against Arizona State at 8:30 p.m. Saturday night in Tempe.