For the fourth time in four years, the University of Arizona has captured the annual Territorial...
Cats, Buffs to Play for Pride in Boulder
Arizona and Colorado will square off Nov. 12 in Boulder, Colo. Both teams will seek victories in the Pac-12.
The Wildcats will work for their first road victory of the year on their penultimate trip, while the Buffaloes will look for a first-ever Pac-12 victory. The game will be a battle of two teams whose performances depend on inner-core values and pride, with little else on the line.
Quarterbacks Nick Foles and Tyler Hansen will go to work against pass efficiency defenses rated near the bottom of the FBS heap. Each team has allowed more than 400 yards per game and about 35 points, so a defensive struggle might not be suggested.
For Arizona, Foles will see if he can continue to fling the rock at a single season and career record clip.
With bowl eligibility out of the equation, which squad will dig down deeper to find some purpose? On Arizona's sideline, the motivation for younger players is impressing a soon-to-be new coach on film, while the senior members conclude some outstanding careers both statistical and otherwise.
The UA will visit Boulder, Colo. for the first time since 1986 when Larry Smith's Wildcats earned a narrow 24-21 victory.
Last week, Arizona accumulated 457 yards but most of it was between the 20s as the Cats dropped a Pac-12 Homecoming tilt to Utah, 34-31.
The UA ventured twice into the red zone and came away empty-handed. The first came on the opening drive when it reached the Utes 15 yard-line and subsequently tried a fake field goal that didn't work.
The second came in the fourth quarter when a 1st-and-goal at the Utah 1 turned into a nightmare when Conroy Black stepped in front of a Foles pass and took it back to midfield with the UA trailing 27-14. The Utes cashed in on that drive and put the game away.
Way earlier, a Greg Bird block of a UA punt at Arizona's 25 yardline set Utah up for a six-yard scoring drive; and a first of the two interceptions off Foles inside UA's half of the field set up a 30-yard scoring drive.
Utah, to its credit, made the most of 332 yards in total offense by protecting the ball (no turnovers to UA's three) and taking advantage of four red-zone trips with four scores.
Another partially blocked punt by Bird hurt the UA's field position and in the end the Cats played a lot of the game on their end of the field. Foles threw for 326 yards and two scores by David Douglas, who had a career-high 10 catches for a career-high 156 yards.
Three UA backs totaled 137 yards led by sophomore Daniel Jenkins' best-ever 57 markers (6 carries) and a score of 29 yards as time wound down. The Cats had 28 first downs, 6.1 yards per play, a season-low (tying) three penalties and converted eight of 14 third downs, but special teams' play and three turnovers spoiled any chances at momentum.
The victory was Utah's first-ever Pac-12 road win.
Arizona will conclude the Pac-12 portion of its schedule on Nov. 19 with a trip to rival Arizona State for the annual Territorial Cup – the nation's oldest rivalry trophy. Game time and TV information has yet to be announced.
The Wildcats will conclude the season on Nov. 26 against Louisiana-Lafayette at Arizona Stadium.