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The Daily Wildcat

The Daily Wildcat

 

An Arizona offensive lineman’s dream come true

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Tyler Besh / Arizona Daily Wildcat

For Addison Bachman, this was it. This was the moment he’d been waiting for, the moment anyone who’s ever been an offensive lineman can only dream of.

“It’s what you fall asleep thinking about,” Bachman said. “You envision in your head what’s going to happen.”

On Saturday against Oregon State, Bachman got the first significant amount of playing time of his UA career when starting center Kyle Quinn was injured in the third quarter.

As a senior, he’s never even started at the Division I level — he transferred from Citrus College in Glendora, Calif., in 2010 — but he was thrown into the fire against a ranked Pac-12 opponent.

But that wasn’t the moment he was talking about. Bachman’s always prepared himself for playing time, even though there hasn’t been much of it to spare the last two years.

No, the moment came with less than eight minutes on the clock, Arizona trailing 31-28. It was second down, 11 yards to go.

Quarterback Matt Scott snapped the ball, dropped back and threw the ball toward receiver Tyler Slavin near the line of scrimmage, the ball was tipped forward by a defender and for a few seconds was up in the air.

As the ball started to fall back toward the ground, there was only one person in its vicinity — the 6-foot-4, 297-pound Bachman.

“We’re always taught to run to the ball,” Bachman said. “I actually was looking right and the safety had dropped and I turned left and I heard the ball tip and it literally happened to fall straight to me.”

So he took two steps, and made the catch for a 10-yard completion.

Bachman knows that receivers are always taught to knock the ball down on a tipped ball to avoid a negative play, so the first thought in his head was to not lose any yards.

“I was thinking that, but I noticed that I was downfield and it was third down,” Bachman said. “So I caught it and got the first down.”

He didn’t actually get a first down — he was a yard shy — but that didn’t lessen the moment for him at all, or his teammates, or his family and friends.

In fact, Bachman made sure to get his own copy of the game’s box score to hold onto, and said his friends and family back home joked about how they saw his name on the ESPN mobile app.

“They [offensive lineman] always dream of that,” said running back Ka’Deem Carey, laughing. “He was excited. The offensive line was wishing it was them.

“He just went out there and saw it and caught it.”

“I was proud [of Bachman],” added Fabbians Ebbele, the starting right tackle. “[But] I was like ‘pitch it back to me.’”

The play led to a first down and eventually an Arizona touchdown, and although the catch was a fun moment for Bachman and co., the most important task at hand for Bachman was filling the gap left by Quinn when he was forced to leave the game with an ankle injury.

Head coach Rich Rodriguez and Carey were both impressed with Bachman’s performance against the Beavers.

“I think he stepped up,” Carey said. “I felt like he just executed out there. He has to get used to it a lot more but I felt like he did good out there.”

Arizona won’t reveal the severity of Quinn’s injury until at least Thursday when the weekly injury report is released, but in the meantime Bachman isn’t at all nervous at the prospect of taking the reins as Arizona’s interim starting center.

“Kyle’s are big shoes to fill, he’s the leader of the O-line,” Bachman said. “Stanford is pretty basic on their defense so it’s not too bad to study.”

Bachman sits behind Quinn every game, so he always readies himself on the sideline as if he’ll be thrown into action at any moment.

“You never know when someone’s gonna go down,” Bachman added.

“It’s as if I’m playing every week, every play, so it’s good. I’ve been prepared.

“I’m always watching Kyle and seeing the defense, so when he comes off the field, listening to what they’re saying, picking up on stuff. You always gotta think youre going in next.”

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