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The Daily Wildcat

The Daily Wildcat


Coaching staff confident in Scott [w/ VIDEO]

Coaching staff confident in Scott [w/ VIDEO]

Arizona quarterback Nick Foles went down with a knee injury early in Saturday night’s 24-7 win over Washington State, but the good news is that head coach Mike Stoops doesn’t anticipate it ending Foles’ season.

“”He’s week-to-week,”” Stoops said. “”I’ll know next Monday what the likelihood of his earliest return will be. He’ll be back when he’s ready — it’s not a career or season-ending injury. We’ll see how he reacts to certain treatment throughout the week.””

Foles’ injury means that Matt Scott, who was Arizona’s starter last season before Foles’ emergence, will be handed the keys to Arizona’s offense for at least the immediate future. Even though Scott has struggled at times, his coaches couldn’t be more confident in his ability to run the offense.

“”There’s nothing Matt (Scott) can’t do on the football field,”” Stoops said. “”He has a great arm, great feet and he’s gotten to where he can make the right decisions. We feel very comfortable with Matt, and we’re excited to watch him play.””

Quarterbacks coach Frank Scelfo mirrored Stoops’ thoughts on what Scott brings to the table.

“”He moves well, he’s athletic, but he’s a quarterback who happens to be pretty athletic — he’s not a running back,”” Scelfo said. “”What he does do, he moves well and can find some creases. Where he’s dangerous is when there’s a breakdown, he can find a way to pick up extra yards.””

Scott completed 14 of 20 passes for 139 yards including an interception against Washington State, but what he’s best known for is his feet. Arizona might have to shift its game plan to being more focused on running the ball from the quarterback position.

“”We’re going to do what gives us the best chance of winning and moving the football,”” Stoops said. “”What that is, everyone will see on Saturday. All options are open … we have to make plays, and we have to be aggressive.””

Scott was sacked five times on Saturday, and Foles was sacked once. The Wildcats have to fix that in order for Scott to have any chance of being successful throwing the ball. Unfortunately for Arizona, several issues caused the sacks.

“”Some (sacks) were on the quarterback. They were hot reads, and we’ve got to get rid of the football,”” Stoops said. “”We’ve also got to have somebody open to get rid of it. It’s a combination of a lot of things, but there we just too many sacks in a game. It’s somewhat concerning.””

Also on Stoops’ list of concerns is Arizona’s lack of consistency on offense. Against the lowly Cougars, the Wildcats only scored on consecutive possessions once, and the offense has been ineffective at times this year.

“”We’ve had a lot of negative yardage plays, whether it’s penalties or sacks and that just makes it hard to get first downs,”” Stoops said. “”We’re just not getting the points that I think we’re going to need as we move forward throughout this final six games. That’s really a concern and something we have to get better at. I’m not pleased with our performance up to this point.””

Offenses usually struggle at the beginning of the season, but Stoops said that he hasn’t seen as much improvement as he has in years past. Scoring points is going to be a necessity during the meat of the Pacific 10 Conference schedule.

“”We thought the offense was going to be a strength, but it hasn’t been what we thought it would be,”” Stoops said.


Injury news

Foles wasn’t Arizona’s only key player who went down in Pullman, Wash. Redshirt freshman defensive tackle Justin Washington appeared to have a serious knee injury against WSU, but that wasn’t the case. He has a chance to be in the lineup for Saturday’s Homecoming game.

“”It’s not real significant, but whether he’s ready to go on Saturday, we’ll see,”” Stoops said.

Wide receiver Juron Criner didn’t see action in the second half of Saturday’s game, but Stoops attributed that to the cold weather affecting Criner’s toe problem that he has been battling all year. He should be ready to go against Washington.

Cornerback Trevin Wade should be back in practice all week after battling a thigh injury, and receiver/punt returner William “”Bug”” Wright will also be back for the matchup with Washington after missing last week’s game because of a sprained shoulder.

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