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The Daily Wildcat

The Daily Wildcat


FINAL: Arizona shocks No. 10 Utah 37-30 in double overtime on senior night

Tyler Baker

Receiver Nate Phillips (6) puts the game winning touchdown into the end zone on Saturday, Nov. 14. The Wildcats defeated the Utes 37-30 in double overtime.

TUCSON, Ariz.—It might have taken double overtime here at Arizona Stadium, but the Arizona Wildcats managed the unfathomable upset over No. 10 Utah, defeating the Utes 37-30. 

It seemed like fate had other plans. Bad snaps, miscues, penalties and Anu Solomon leaving the game with an injury wouldn’t prevent Arizona from rocking the nation as fans rushed the field. 

“With everything that has happened with the injuries, and the way that the schedule is lined up, I think maybe some of the doubts understandably started to creep in,” Arizona football head coach Rich Rodriguez said. ”This is one of the best [wins] for sure. [Utah has] had a tremendous season, but they still had to beat Arizona, and our guys came to play.” 

In the end, the defense stepped up and Jerrard Randall saved the day. He might have only completed one pass, but it was the one that mattered, especially on senior night. 

“This is obviously a very good win for the program,” Rodriguez said. ”Our guys battled for more than 60 minutes against a very good and well coached football team. We are especially proud of our seniors that played their last home game. I loved their effort.” 

The nightmare that led to the overtime happened mid-fourth quarter. Anu Solomon received a huge shot to the head, a very controversial call in which targeting was not called. Solomon would leave the game a few seconds later with a suspected concussion.

The Wildcats jumped off to an early 10-0 lead on a Casey Skowron 47-yard field goal and a Samajie Grant 7-yard touchdown catch in the first quarter.

Utah countered with a 1-yard touchdown rush by running back Devontae Booker. To round out the first quarter, Cayleb Jones hauled in a 17-yard touchdown catch.

The Utes and Wildcats then exchanged field goals of 34 yards and 40 yards, respectively. Utah finished the half with a two-yard touchdown pass from Travis Wilson to Kenneth Scott.

To start the second half, Wilson fired a 59-yard touchdown pass to tight end Harrison Handley and added a 38-yard field goal.

For a moment, it appeared the Wildcats didn’t stand a chance. Then Solomon rushed for a six-yard touchdown and brought the momentum back.

When Solomon left the game due to injury, hope seemed lost. 

“When he went out, the trainer said ‘hey he’s not going to be back in,'” Rodriguez said. “I mean he got hit in the head by the turf or somebody else. Maybe the turf bounced up and hit him in the head. The turf somehow hit his head.” 

After exchanging field goals in overtime, Arizona shocked the world on a 25-yard touchdown pass to Nate Phillips from Randall. Utah got the ball back in the second overtime and failed to convert on fourth down, as the ball was batted away. 

“Pretty satisfied with that touchdown that I threw,” Randall said. ”I’m just pretty happy with myself that I have fought the adversity that I had faced.” 

Solomon threw for 277 yards on 17-27 passing attempts two touchdowns and an interception, adding 86 rushing yards. Jones led all receivers with 126 yards, five catches and one touchdown.

Tellas Jones lead the Wildcats defense with nine total tackles and half a sack, along with Jeff Worthy, who compiled the other half.

Arizona rushed onto the field into blue and white smoke as Casey Skowron ran out with the French flag, honoring Paris after yesterday’s terrorist attacks.

“I don’t know actually,” Skowron said. ”Drew just came up to me before the game. That was an honor to be selected for that.” 

UA alumnus Bob Baffert and family were honored after the first media timeout for winning the Triple Crown with horse American Pharoah.

Linebacker and Arizona stud Scooby Wright III did not play against Utah in what could very well be his final game in a Wildcat uniform.

The win indicates that Arizona is now bowl eligible. Next up, the Territorial Cup. 

“It feels great,” Jones said. “Things were clicking early. It feels great to get a win like this for our whole program. Everyone in our program has been through so much. It was so big for us. We are going to carry the momentum into Arizona State. 

Key Plays:

First Quarter

-With 12:54 remaining in the first quarter, Casey Skowron hits a 47-yard field goal

-With 9:10 remaining in the first, Anu Solomon throws a 7-yard touchdown pass to Samajie Grant

-With 2:42 remaining in the first, Devontae Booker rushes for a 1-yard touchdown

-With 1:16 remaining in the first, Solomon throws a 17-yard touchdown pass to Cayleb Jones

Second Quarter

-With 14:46 remaining in the second quarter, Jamar Allah picks off Utah QB Travis Wilson and returns for 25-yards

-With 5:39 remaining in the second, Utah kicker Andy Phillips hits a 34-yard field goal

-With 2:25 remaining in the second, Skowron notches a 40-yard field goal

-With 0:45 remaining in the second, Travis Wilson throws a two-yard touchdown pass to Kenneth Scott

Third Quarter

-With 14:10 remaining in the third quarter, Wilson throws a 59-yard touchdown pass to Harrison Handley

-With 11:08 remaining in the third, Solomon throws an interception in the end zone

-With 5:19 remaining in the third, Phillips kicks a 38-yard field goal

-With 4:01 remaining in the third, Solomon rushes for a six-yard touchdown

Fourth Quarter

-With 7:54 remaining in the fourth quarter, Jerrard Randall intercepted

-With 5:10 remaining in the fourth, Parker Zellers recovers a Utah fumble caused by Jeff Worthy


-Randall to Phillips, 25-yard touchdown

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