Okay, I admit. I was horribly wrong about how I thought this game was going to turn out.
Arizona manhandled Washington on Saturday night 44-14. It was no contest, really. 24-14 at halftime, but the Huskies had no real chance.
Wildcats quarterback Matt Scott, who filled in for the injured Nick Foles, was magical in this game. He was efficient (18-22). He made big plays (2 TD passes, 65 yards rushing). And he didn’t turn the ball over. He looked more like Jake Locker tonight than…well, than Jake Locker.
Adding on to Scott’s performance was the running game for Arizona. I must say, the Wildcats now have two established running backs, and one of the dangerous tandems in the Pac-10. Keola Antolin ran for 114 yards and two touchdowns, highlighted by a 78-yard TD scamper in the second quarter. Nic Grigsby had 50 yards on the ground and two scores as well.
Despite how well the offense played tonight, the defense was the squad that really stepped up for Arizona. They allowed an early touchdown, but clamped down after that. I was really impressed by the speed of Arizona’s defense; they looked faster, more physical, and worked harder than the guys on offense for Washington. What really caught my eye was Jake Locker’s rushing numbers: Six carries, -24 yards, and a long run of six yards. Arizona was determined to stop Locker in his tracks, and they did a wonderful job doing it.
The Wildcats now know they can win without Nick Foles, at least at home against a mid-level Pac-10 team. Next week, they go on the road to play a UCLA team that got absolutely embarrassed against Oregon on Thursday. Scott will most likely start again, but it looks like he will be quite comfortable after today’s performance.
The three games after UCLA look daunting for Arizona: at Stanford, home against USC, and at Oregon. Keep an eye out for the game against Stanford; if the Wildcats beat UCLA, a win against the Cardinal could provide the momentum for Arizona to finish a very special season.
Come back on Thursday to read the Arizona-UCLA preview.
About the Author
Written by Henry Childs
I am currently a senior at the University of Oregon studying Broadcast Journalism. Although I have a love for my Ducks, I am simply an avid college football fan trying to get a head start in the sports journalism world. Born and raised in Portland, I am also a ginormous Portland Trailblazers fan. Some of my loves include golf, Dr. Pepper, pugs, and living in the beautiful Pacific Northwest.