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The Daily Wildcat

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The Daily Wildcat

The Daily Wildcat


RBs shine, special teams struggles in scrimmage

Gordon Bates / Arizona Daily Wildcat Arizona Wildcats scrimmage at Arizona Stadium Saturday, Aug 20, 2011.

The Arizona football team wrapped up its preseason camp Saturday with a public scrimmage that lasted roughly an hour and a half at Arizona Stadium. Overall, play was sloppy and marred by penalties and turnovers, but here’s a look at Saturday night’s highlights:

• Freshman Ka’Deem Carey showed why he was Arizona’s highest-ranked runningback in the 2011 class, rushing for a team-high 69 yards on eight carries. Carey showed an ability to make big plays, returning a kickoff 42 yards and breaking loose for a 38-yard carry off a pitch to the right side.

• Unfortunately for the Wildcats, Carey saw his success after runningback Daniel Jenkins, the likely No. 2 option behind Keola Antolin, went down with an apparent ankle injury about mid-way through the scrimmage. Jenkins took almost all of the first-team reps with Antolin held out for precautionary reasons. Jenkins was effective as both a runner and a pass catcher, nabbing four catches for 40 yards.

• But it isn’t all bad news on the injury front. Injured safety Adam Hall went through pregame drills with the defensive backs, though he wasn’t in pads. Hall appeared to be moving pretty well, but clearly wasn’t 100 percent. He looks to be the closest to returning of the three Wildcats who suffered knee injuries during spring practice.

• The field-goal team was the most highly scrutinized unit during preseason camp, and was the most inconsistent unit Saturday. Returning placekicker Alex Zendejas missed on his first attempt, which came from 50 yards and drew a smattering of boos. Zendejas later connected on a 38-yarder. Transfer kicker Jaime Salazar connected on a 37-yarder before missing from 45 yards. Salazar was the first kicker to get a field goal try.

• Punter Kyle Dugandzic was also inconsistent. He pinned the offense inside the 15-yard-line twice but struggled when he needed to get distance on his kicks, booting a 29-yarder on one try. Dugandzic had good hang-time on his kicks that were geared toward accuracy instead of distance.

• Quarterback Nick Foles and wide receiver Juron Criner connected on the play of the game, a 39-yard touchdown strike. Criner ran a fade in one-on-one coverage, and made a diving catch while crossing the goal line for a score.

• Senior cornerback Trevin Wade intercepted two passes, and made a huge hit to break up another. Wade and sophomore cornerback Shaquille Richardson are battling for the spot opposite sophomore Jonathan McKnight.

• As a whole, Arizona’s secondary likes to hit — a lot. Both Wade and safety Mark Watley had jarring hits to break up passes Saturday, and the unit as a whole isn’t afraid to step up and contribute in run support.

• Freshman quarterback Daxx Garman connected with receiver Sean Willet on another highlight play. Garman was pressured and rolled out to his right before finding Willet and making a perfect throw to hit him in stride just out of reach of a defender.

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