Arizona football notes: Scott carries on, UA to face tricky offense
Tyler Besh / Arizona Daily Wildcat
Toward the end of Saturday’s upset over No. 17 USC, Arizona quarterback Matt Scott ran a lead-option play, charged ahead for a gain of about six yards and slid to the turf to protect himself.
In the process, Scott was hit twice in the head while sliding, and appeared to have suffered a concussion, as he was seen vomiting on the field two plays before throwing his final touchdown pass of the day.
Two days after the game, Scott said he feels fine, and Arizona head coach Rich Rodriguez said that he did not notice anything abnormal about Scott’s demeanor in Sunday evening’s practice.
“I’m not going to talk in medical terms,” Rodriguez said. “The trainers were concerned that he appeared nauseous. He appeared fine to me yesterday in walk-through.”
Scott added that he had been feeling nauseous a few plays prior to taking the hit, and that he vomited because he felt “winded.”
“I really don’t think I got a concussion, honestly,” Scott said.
“I felt something coming up a few plays before and I was trying to keep it down.
“All summer, when we were working with strength coaches, I was throwing up every time we ran. I don’t think there’s any concern. I’ve played this game for awhile. You’re going to take hits, that’s part of the game.”
After throwing his final pass to David Richards that extended the lead to 10 points, Scott did not return to the game. Backup quarterback B.J. Denker entered the game for Scott, but did not attempt a pass.
Wildcats to face ‘multiple’ offense in UCLA
The No. 22 Wildcats (5-3, 2-3 Pac-12) have faced pro-style offenses in Oregon State and USC, spread-option offenses like their own in Oregon and Oklahoma State, but this weekend is the first time that the Arizona defense will be tested by a scheme succinctly called ‘multiple,’ by Bruins coach Jim Mora.
UCLA redshirt freshman quarterback Brett Hundley has played well for the Bruins, leading them to a 6-2 start in Mora’s first season.
“I remember him coming out of high school,” Rodriguez said. “He’s from Arizona [Chandler], so people know who he is. I always thought, ‘this is a guy who’s going to have great success no matter where he goes.”
The Bruins’ offense is dependent on their run game and senior running back Johnathan Franklin. In two losses, Franklin has rushed for only 147 of his 1,042 yards, but Rodriguez said that the run game is not the only thing that UCLA does well.
“They spread you out, if you have weaknesses they’ll try to expose them,” Rodriguez said. “We have to maintain as much control as we can on offense.”
Flowers continues adjustment to linebacker spot
UA junior linebacker Marquis Flowers had possibly the best game of his career against USC Saturday, recording two interceptions, a forced fumble and was named the Pac-12 Defensive Player of the Week on Monday. There remains work to be done, though, according to Rodriguez.
“He’s taken to it pretty well, at least from a ‘buy-in’ team standpoint,” Rodriguez said. “He’s getting better each week, but he’s still learning the position. He wasn’t there in spring practice or fall camp. He’s excited because he thinks he can be really good at the position. He’s done a better job, but other parts are still coming.”
Flowers, the Wildcats’ biggest linebacker at 6-foot-3, 221 pounds, leads Arizona in sacks with 3.5 and is second on the team in both tackles and tackles for loss, recording 55 and 7.5, respectively.