Arizona football's journey to a potential post-season
Arizona football kicked off the 2019 season last weekend in Honolulu, Hawai’i against the Rainbow Warriors and dropped the game 45-38. With eleven games remaining for the Wildcats, there is a lot of questions for this team.
Sept. 7 vs NAU:
The Wildcats' home opener is against an in-state rival from Flagstaff. Northern Arizona University went 4-6 last season and an abysmal 1-4 on the road. The home opener should be no problem for the Wildcats and the team should be able to even their record at 1-1.
Sept. 14 vs Texas Tech:
The Raiders come to Tucson after back-to-back home games against Montana State and UTEP. The team recently hired a new head coach, Matt Wells, after previous head coach Kliff Kingsbury coached for six years from 2013-2018. Last year, the team went 5-7 and 2-2 on the road.
Sept. 28 vs UCLA:
Arizona's final game of the three home game stretch is against the UCLA Bruins, a team that went 3-9 last season and 1-4 on the road. Last year, for UCLA's Homecoming game, the Bruins defeated the Wildcats 31-30 at home in Pasadena. This game should be a close match-up for the Wildcats and could honestly go either way.
Oct. 5 at Colorado:
The Wildcats travel to Boulder, Colorado after a series of three home games to square off against CU Boulder. The Buffaloes went 5-7 and 3-3 at home last season and this will be another close game. Last year, the Wildcats defeated Colorado by a score of 42-34.
Oct. 12 vs Washington:
Arizona returns home to host the Washington Huskies, a team that went 10-4 last season. The Huskies quarterback, Jacob Eason, attended the University of Georgia, but announced his transfer in February of 2018. Eason sat out during the 2018 season, so this will be his first season playing for the Huskies.
Oct. 19 at USC:
After a tough game versus Washington the Wildcats will then have to travel to Los Angeles for a game against the Trojans. Arizona hasn’t beaten USC since 2012 and haven’t won in Los Angeles since 2009. Last year the Trojans went 5-7 and 3-3 at home but after a rough beginning to their schedule they might be in a similar position.
Oct. 26 at Stanford:
Arizona and Stanford haven’t played in the last two years and Stanford hasn’t lost to the Wildcats since 2009. Last year, the Cardinals went 9-4 and 4-2 at home. They should still be ranked in the top-25 this year when the two teams meet up in Palo Alto in a tough game for Arizona.
Nov. 2 vs. Oregon State:
Arizona will finally be back at home for the Homecoming game this year against Oregon State. The Beavers haven’t been above .500 since 2013 when they won the Hawai’i Bowl against Boise State. OSU only won two games last year but lost to Arizona 35-14. After a couple of rough weeks for Arizona expect for them to bounce back and get a win.
Nov. 16 at Oregon:
Arizona will then have to travel up to Eugene where they last won in 2014 when the Ducks were ranked number two in the country. Arizona blew out Oregon last year 44-15 in a game where they were dominant from the start. Senior quarterback Justin Herbert will be back for his last year after bypassing the NFL draft where he was expected to be a first round draft pick.
Nov. 23 vs Utah:
This year’s senior game will be against Utah. Utah was picked preseason by the media to win the Pac-12 South and the Pac-12 championship game. This will also be Utah’s last road game of the year and should be their last big challenge if they hope to win the South. Utah was 9-5 last year with a blowout win against Arizona.
Nov. 30 at Arizona State:
The last conference game of the year will take place in Tempe this year as the Territorial Cup will be renewed for the 93rd time. ASU has won the last two meetings including last year when Arizona missed a field goal in the last minute. It doesn’t matter how good or bad either team is when they meet, it’s always a high paced and physical game where no one knows what to expect.