Cat Talk: Arizona’s resiliency - The Explorer: Sports

Cat Talk: Arizona’s resiliency

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Posted: Wednesday, November 7, 2012 4:00 am

Walking into the Rose Bowl, it was tough to gauge exactly how many fans would be in attendance on a night No. 18-ranked USC was hosting No. 2 Oregon about 14 miles away down the Harbor Freeway.

But a typically apathetic crowd showed up Saturday and so did No. 25 UCLA in a 66-10 thrashing over No. 24 Arizona. The same cannot be said for the Wildcats.

A season-high 81,673 spectators - the largest crowd since a December 2008 meeting between the cross-town rival Bruins and Trojans - was just the start of several inexplicable events. What was projected to be a shootout turned lopsided in a hurry.

The Wildcats couldn’t play defense, run the offense, punt or field returns. Unlike the team’s previous three losses, there were no signs of life in any aspect and nothing would go right.

When players Jake Fischer and Kyle Quinn and head coach Rich Rodriguez said afterward that the result does not define their season, that’s correct - but only for now. A resilient club all year, UA must now regroup and face its biggest challenge of the season with three games to play and the team still one win away from bowl eligibility.

Forget that lowly Colorado is on the schedule up next. The status of quarterback Matt Scott is in question, at best, and the team was fortunate enough to learn that linebacker Hank Hobson traveled back to Tucson after spending the night in a Los Angeles-area hospital.

Scott received a third hit to the helmet in two weeks, crumpling to the ground in the Arizona end zone after taking an apparent knee to the dome. Rodriguez said Scott was dizzy but did not offer much else, and the word concussion will likely enter the minds of many for another week until an official word is released.

Unlike the previous week, Scott did not pop right back to his feet. Any questions about what the depth at quarterback looks like behind Scott were answered, as backup B.J. Denker was sacked three times in his brief appearance. Rodriguez eventually turned to receiver Richard Morrison at quarterback before the night was done.

As for the defense, the other shoe finally dropped.

Statistically, it’s a wonder how the Wildcats have been able to come up with timely, opportunistic plays in a handful of victories. Brett Hundley and Johnathan Franklin made sure that was not going to happen to UCLA.

Hobson’s neck injury only adds to the growing depth issues. Like Rodriguez said less than a month ago, the Wildcats could use more than one bye week.

In a way, the game also was an aberration. An otherwise competitive team ran into a buzzsaw that could not and would not be slowed down.

Instead of forgetting the game, the staff may want to burn the film. Whether the bad memories of the game remain burned in their players’ minds and breaks their spirit remains to be seen.

How many more lives - and bodies - do these ‘Cats have?

(Editor’s Note: Tracy McDannald is the senior editor of GOAZCATS.com. To see more Wildcats’ coverage, visit www.GOAZCATS.com.)

© 2014 The Explorer. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

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HS Schedule

Tuesday, September 16

Boys Golf (@ 3 p.m.)

Buena, Cienega at Marana

Mountain View, Ironwood Ridge, Catalina at Amphi (Silverbell GC)

Catalina Foothills, Pueblo, Sahuarita at Sahuaro

Girls Volleyball (Fr 4 p.m., JV 5 p.m., Var 6 p.m. unless otherwise noted)

Mountain View at Rio Rico

Ironwood Ridge at Glendale Ironwood

Swimming (@4 p.m.)

Pusch Ridge, Sahuarita at Desert Christian

Wednesday, September 17

Girls Golf (@ 3 p.m.)

Rincon at CDO

Ironwood Ridge, Desert View at Flowing Wells (Silverbell)

Cross Country (@4:30)

Salpointe at Catalina Foothills

Palo Verde, Nogales at Marana

Rincon, St. Gregory at CDO

Sahuarita, Pueblo, Pusch Ridge at Desert View

Girls Volleyball (Fr 4 p.m., JV 5 p.m., Var 6 p.m. unless otherwise noted)

Empire at Marana (4:30, 5:30, 6:30)

CDO at Queen Creek

Cienega at Mountain View

Sahuaro at Catalina Foothills

Walden Grove at Pusch Ridge

Thursday, September 18

Girls Golf

CDO, Ironwood Ridge at Phoenix Aguila Invitational (all day)

Boys Golf

Sahuaro and Salpointe at Ironwood Ridge

CDO, Rincon, Sunnyside at Tucson High

Girls Volleyball (Fr 4 p.m., JV 5 p.m., Var 6 p.m. unless otherwise noted)

Marana at Sahuarita

Ironwood Ridge at Sahuaro (4:30, 5:30, 6:30)

Catalina Foothills at Rincon

Pusch Ridge at San Manuel

Swimming (4 p.m.)

Marana vs. Tucson at Quincy Douglas Pool

Cienega at Marana

CDO, Ironwood Ridge at Amphi

Catalina Foothills at Sahuaro

Freshman Football (all games at 6 p.m. unless otherwise noted)

Flowing Wells at Marana (4 p.m.)

Desert View at Mountain View

Cienega at CDO

Ironwood Ridge at Buena

Catalina Foothills at Sahuarita

JV Football (all games at 6 p.m. unless otherwise noted)

Amphi at Marana

Santa Cruz Valley at Pusch Ridge

Mountain View at Desert View

CDO at Cienega

Buena at Ironwood Ridge

Sahuarita at Catalina Foothills

Friday, September 19

Boys Golf

Catalina Foothills, Ironwood Ridge, CDO, at Phoenix Aguila Invitational (all day)

Cross Country

Mountain View, Ironwood Ridge at Mt. Carmel Invitational (San Diego, CA)

Girls Volleyball

CDO at Westwood Tournament of Champions

Football (@7 p.m.)

Pusch Ridge at Santa Cruz Valley

Catalina at Marana

Desert Vista at Mountain View

Ironwood Ridge at Buena

Cienega at CDO

Catalina Foothills at Sahuarita

Saturday, September 20

Boys Golf

Catalina Foothills, Ironwood Ridge, CDO, at Phoenix Aguila Invitational (all day)

Cross Country

Marana at Old Pueblo Invite(Lincoln Park)

Mountain View at San Diego

Catalina Foothills, CDO at Ojo Rojo (Chandler, AZ)

Swimming

Marana at Wolves Classic (Chandler High)

Girls Volleyball

CDO at Westwood Tournament of Champions

 

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