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The Daily Wildcat

The Daily Wildcat


Arizona takes it one game at a time

Colin Prenger
Colin Prenger / Daily Wildcat The UA Wildcats took on the UCLA Bruins Thursday, Oct. 20. In his first game, Tim Kish won against the Bruins 48-12.

Momentum is a fickle thing.

It’s hard to come by and even harder to maintain, but as the Arizona football team heads to Seattle to face the Washington Huskies at 7:30 p.m. on Saturday, it’s the only time this season that it has any semblance of it.

The 48-12 blowout of UCLA last week was more than just a win against an overrated opponent. It brought some form of life back to the Wildcat football program.

It was the first time since the NAU game that Juron Criner looked like one of the best wideouts in the country and it was the first time that the defense actually looked prepared to play.
The Wildcats showed something that we hadn’t seen all season — a will to win.

And they hope that they can carry that over to Saturday when they face the Huskies.

“We always knew that we had a great team,” Arizona safety Robert Golden said. “We never doubted ourselves, we just knew that we have to get it together.

“Last week was a step that we took to put this team together, but we still have a lot more steps and we’re taking them one day at a time.”

Arizona will have a tougher challenge defensively this week as the Huskies offense is much more dynamic than the unreliable pistol style that the Bruins utilize.

Because of the high level of quarterbacks in the Pac-12, Washington’s sophomore Keith Price often gets overlooked, but his ability to lead the offense is easily on par.

Price and his deep receiving core will look to take advantage of an inexperienced Arizona secondary, as starters Shaquille Richardson and Jourdon Grandon will remain on the sidelines, suspended after the bench-clearing brawl seconds before halftime against UCLA.

“Obviously (the suspensions weren’t) something that we were counting on going in,” Kish said in a conference call on Tuesday. “We’ve had to move some people around a little bit in the back end with some guys that we do have, we’re not sure how that’s all going to fit together by Saturday, but we had to make some adjustments.”

The Wildcats were able to shake what was becoming a pass-exclusive type of offense and turn it into a balanced attack against the Bruins.

Arizona ran for a season-high 254 yards and three touchdowns, and according to Kish, most of the run game’s success was predicated on the efforts of the offensive line.

Despite the line having only one combined start before the season started, the coaching staff noted how vital its maturity is to the program.

“Right now, we told them they’re veterans, they’re not rookies anymore,” Kish said in his conference call. “They’re halfway through that season and how long that takes until they’re a well-oiled machine, who’s to say? I’m really pleased with the effort and really the gaining of confidence that they have during the course of the season this year.”

Center Kyle Quinn expects the line to keep up the pressure and remember the tenacity that it had last week.

“We played for each other, we came off the ball fast, and just reacted to what UCLA did,” he said after the UCLA game. “We really took it to them, it was a lot of fun.”

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