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College Hotline - Pac-12 football: Arizona game-by-game predictions for 2016

Discussion in 'CU Buffs Newsroom' started by RSSBot, Aug 18, 2016.

  1. RSSBot

    RSSBot News Junkie

    Jul 8, 2005
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    (AP Photo)

    Big-picture question on Arizona as we begin a 12-part series predicting the outcome of every game for every team in the Pac-12:

    Will the Wildcats contend in the South or continue their fair-to-middlin’ ways, thereby confirming what skeptics believed at the time — that the 2014 division title was a one-off, not the new normal under Rich Rodriguez.

    Much depends on Anu Solomon, of course. I don’t remember a Pac-12 quarterback who touched both extremes of the spectrum so quickly:

    Wins a division title as a freshman, struggles with consistency/injury as a sophomore (seventh in efficiency in conference games) and enters his third season with a tenuous hold on the job.

    Solomon (or Brandon Dawkins) will have a first-rate group of receivers at his disposal. But I’m hardly sold on the offensive line or any unit of the defense, and the schedule, while soft early and late, is grueling in the middle and will severely test Arizona’s depth.

    I’m not sure the Wildcats hold up.

    Coach: Rich Rodriguez
    Season: Fifth
    Record: 33-20
    Win totals by season: 8-8-10-7
    Job security: Airtight.
    Notable: Posted winning record in conference play once in four years (division title in 2014).

    Here we go …

    Sept. 3: vs. Brigham Young (in Glendale)
    Result: Win
    Record: 1-0
    Comment: Tight to the finish but tailback Nick Wilson is the difference as Wildcats start with a spirited victory that hyper-inflates expectations.

    Sept. 10: vs. Grambling State
    Result: Win
    Record: 2-0
    Comment: Routine blowout.

    Sept. 17: vs. Hawaii
    Result: Win
    Record: 3-0
    Comment: With kudos rolling in, and with an eye on Week Four, Wildcats start slowly but take control late.

    Sept. 24: vs. Washington
    Result: Win
    Record: 4-0/1-0
    Comment: The Zona Zoo is rocking on a blistering night as Arizona jumps to an early lead and holds on for the upset.

    Oct. 1: at UCLA
    Result: Loss
    Record: 4-1/1-1
    Comment: Reality is the road, Josh Rosen, and UCLA’s defense.

    Oct. 8: at Utah
    Result: Loss
    Record: 4-2/1-2
    Comment: RichRod’s ownership of this series comes to an end as the Utes’ defensive front dominates.

    Oct. 15: vs. USC
    Result: Loss
    Record: 4-3/1-3
    Comment: Losses mounting, the Wildcats put too much pressure on themselves in front of antsy sellout crowd. Mistakes follow, as does a loss.

    Oct. 22: Bye
    Comment: Recharge, regroup and forget the previous three weeks.

    Oct. 29: vs. Stanford
    Result: Loss
    Record: 4-4/1-4
    Comment: Performance improves, but Arizona’s style and personnel are all wrong for Stanford’s power game.

    Nov. 5: at Washington State
    Result: Loss
    Record: 4-5/1-5
    Comment: Not close.

    Nov. 12: vs. Colorado
    Result: Win
    Record: 5-5/2-5
    Comment: A struggle, but Wildcats end the five-game losing streak and move one victory from a bowl berth.

    Nov. 19: at Oregon State
    Result: Loss
    Record: 5-6/2-6
    Comment: Feeling good after the long-awaited W … and with ASU looming … Wildcats snooze through a cold, rainy, depressing defeat.

    Nov. 25: vs. Arizona State (Friday)
    Result: Win
    Record: 6-6/3-6
    Comment: It could be worse for the Wildcats. They could be ASU.

    Coming later this morning: Arizona State predictions.

    * Follow me on Twitter: @WilnerHotline

    The post Pac-12 football: Arizona game-by-game predictions for 2016 appeared first on College Hotline.

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    by Jon Wilner
  2. buffaholic

    buffaholic Club Member Club Member

    Oct 5, 2008
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    Can't say RichRod has improved this program much, if at all. I predict another in-conference losing record.

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