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The Daily Wildcat

The Daily Wildcat


The top two teams in the Pac-12 South square off this weekend in Boulder

Caleb Villegas
Finton Connolly (91) throwing up a WC at Arizona Stadium on Saturday September 28, 2019 in Tucson Ariz. Finton was so pumped Arizona beat UCLA 20-17

Arizona football travels up to Boulder, Colo. to take on the Buffaloes in a battle of the top two teams in the Pac-12 South. It could be a very different game than people are expecting, however.

Colorado (3-1, 1-0) is coming off a win in Tempe, Ariz. against ASU while Arizona (3-1, 1-0) held on to beat UCLA on a missed field goal after icing the Bruins’ kicker. Even though both teams won their last games, they might be missing their best players for another game. Laviska Shenault is Colorado’s do-it-all wide receiver who has also played running back and can sometimes be seen in a “wildcat” formation.

He has an undisclosed injury that isn’t a concussion and is a game time decision this week. Mustafa Johnson is Colorado’s leader in sacks this year with three but has an ankle sprain and is also a game time decision. Colorado is coming off a bye week, which gave them time to get healthy.

Arizona isn’t healthy either, though. Khalil Tate and J.J. Taylor both didn’t play this past week and their status is still unknown for this game as well. Tate has had a sore hamstring and a nagging ankle injury, both of which have limited his mobility. Head Coach Kevin Sumlin wants to make sure both players are at 100 percent before they play again.

“I won’t know [whether they will play] until later this week,” said Sumlin. “Arizona doesn’t give out a weekly injury report, so we’ll have to wait until Saturday to know if they’re going to play or not. 

If Tate isn’t ready to go, then true freshman Grant Gunnell will get his second career start, but this time, it will be on the road. Gunnell looked good against UCLA throwing for 352 yards on 29-for-44 with one touchdown and no interceptions.

During Sumlin’s time at Arizona, the Wildcats have struggled on the road. They are 1-5 going back to last year with their only win coming at Oregon State last season. Their only loss this year came at Hawaii when Tate came up one yard short of sending the game into overtime. But this year, Sumlin thinks going on the road will be different.

“I think this team is different… when you go on the road it’s just you. I think when we go on the road this year it’ll be different,” said Sumlin. “It’ll be a real test for us. The crowd has been good there. They have a lot to be excited about.”

Colorado has sold out every game so far this year and it’ll be family weekend in Colorado so don’t expect that to change.

The game will take place in Boulder on Saturday, October 5 at 1:30 p.m. MST.

Follow Jack Cooper on Twitter.

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