Arizona football notebook: Wildcat's 47-30 win over Bruins
Just a week after rewriting the college football record books, Arizona quarterback Khalil Tate had another performance to remember in just his second career college start. The 18-year-old sophomore completed 9-13 passes for 148-yards and a touchdown and complemented that with 234-yards on the ground with two touchdowns.
Arizona out gained UCLA, 605-409, on offense and controlled the ball for over 34 minutes of the game. The defense also forced a total of four turnovers en route to a 47-30 win over the Bruins.
The win lifts Arizona to a 4-2 (2-1) record, which puts it at second in the Pac-12 South standings.
Here’s more on what fueled the ‘Cats to victory:
Khalil Tate out the gate
In a very similar fashion as last week against Colorado, Tate made his presence known within the first drive of the game. Tate burst open for a 45-yard touchdown run, which was just the jolt the Wildcats needed to start the game, but it was only the beginning.
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The dual-threat quarterback made big plays with both his arm and his legs series after series. Tate completed several Sunday level throws, including a 53-yard bomb down the sideline to Shun Brown in the first quarter to help set up a Nick Wilson touchdown run.
Tate added another rushing score in the third quarter, this one coming from 71-yards out in which Tate juked multiple Bruin defenders in the backfield and then took off like a rocket to the end zone.
“That’s what we call in practice ‘just doing a Khalil,’” freshman linebacker Kylan Wilborn said about that play.
Every Rose(n) has its thorn
If UCLA quarterback Josh Rosen was looking to add to his Heisman resume on Saturday, his performance probably didn’t leave many impressed.
Rosen completed 20 of 34 passes for just 219-yards and threw three interceptions, one of which was a pick six. The Heisman hopeful looked flustered at times against the Arizona defense especially in the second half when the Wildcats were able to apply pressure up front, sacking Rosen a total of five times.
But the biggest stat is the number “0." Arizona held Rosen to zero touchdown passes for the first time since November of 2015.
“I don't really know what to tell you guys,” Rosen told reporters after the game. “You're asking for answers that if I had them, it wouldn't have happened.”
Yes, Khalil Tate will get a lot of attention after this one, but Arizona had helping hands from many other players besides Tate.
Running back Nick Wilson had 135-yards on the ground along with two touchdowns and his counterpart J.J. Taylor finished with 64-yards.
On the defensive side, freshman “stud” linebacker Kylan Wilborn had four sacks of UCLA’s Josh Rosen and one forced fumble. Cornerback Jace Whittaker picked off Rosen twice in the game and returned one of them to the end zone.
A gorilla, not a monkey
Arizona head coach Rich Rodriguez had never beaten UCLA up until last night, so he was very relieved after the game.
“It wasn’t a monkey, it was a gorilla,” Rodriguez said of the victory.
Arizona will travel to Berkeley, Cali. next weekend, Saturday, Oct. 21 to take on the Golden Bears in a surprisingly meaningful conference game. Cal sits at 4-3 (1-3) after upsetting Washington State last week. The game will kick-off at 5:00 p.m. and will air on the Pac-12 Network.
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