Ok, so it’s time to pick the Oregon St. game. I’ve been waiting until now, hoping that I might be a little more humble as the week goes on. Not so much. Let me be clear, I respect the Oregon St. Beavers. I freely admit that if the Wildcats are foolish enough to overlook the Beavers, they will lose badly. That said, I don’t see that being a possibility.
As much as I respect the Beavers, I strongly believe the Wildcats to be superior on offense and defense. (Not on special teams. The Beavers have the advantage there.) So lets go over why I don’t believe there will be an upset this Saturday.
Arizona is not coming off of a big win, so there will be no hangover. The Cal game was anything but a major victory. While the Arizona defense turned in an impressive performance, the offense was anemic. There were plenty of mistakes for the coaches to go over in the film room. Regardless of the final and game winning offensive drive, the offense clearly underperformed. That game was a coach’s dream. A victory, with plenty of stuff to yell at the players about. I can’t see anyone being arrogant about that win.
Arizona will not be looking ahead to the next opponent. With their next game being at Washington St., The Beavers will be at the forefront of all players minds. I’m not going to pick on the Cougs here. I’ll just leave it at that.
Arizona will not be tired and missing key players. Coming off of the bye week, word out of coach Mike Stoops’ press conference is that everybody is healthy. He stated, in no uncertain terms, that key players WR Juron Criner and RB Taimi Tutogi are healthy and will absolutely play.
The Arizona Wildcats have had two long weeks to think about and prepare for the Beavers. The offense will certainly be eager to prove that their performance against Cal was the exception, and not the rule. The defense will be afforded the opportunity to justify the claim to the #2 defense in the nation. Although some are predicting the upset this weekend, (Say it ain’t so, Mr. Miller!), I predict the Wildcats to win a competitive game, 14 - 24.