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Jourdon Grandon suffers knee injury, Paul Vassallo calls for Arizona defense to be best in the Pac-12

The Wildcats began their four-day stint at Ft. Huachuca on Thursday, after having Wednesday off.  Arizona was back on the field with the first two-a-days of camp yesterday which head coach Mike Stoops said described as sloppy. He did note, as a small compensation I'm sure, that the change of scenery was good for the team.

Today, Arizona has a morning practice and then will participate in an unmanned aerial demonstration in the evening, one of three team activities the Wildcats will take part in at the post.

Here are some other notes about what the Wildcats have been up to during camp:

Vassallo calls for defense to be the best in the Pac-12

In an interview with Fox Sports Arizona, linebacker Paul Vassallo said it was his person goal to make Arizona the best defense in the conference.

"We can't play for 98 plays and give up one big play," Vassallo said about the defense's consistency.  He also referenced a touchdown by Justin Blackmon in the 2010 Valero Alamo Bowl as back breaking.

Vassallo's goal will be put to the test early, as the Wildcats take on Oklahoma State, Stanford and Oregon in the first month of play. With as many injuries as the Arizona defense has suffered in the offseason, it had better hope the challenge isn't season breaking.

All indications are that safety Adam Hall and linebacker Jake Fischer will return and play this season, but it's unlikely that they would see time in any of Arizona's first four games.

Arizona will need fresh blood to rejuvenate the defense, especially at Vassallo's position. He noted junior college transfer David Lopez, and freshmen Hank Hobson and Rob Hankins could get opportunities to make an impact.

Knee-Injury strikes again:

Jourdon Grandon became the fifth Wildcat player to suffer a knee injury since the beginning of spring practices. According to The Arizona Daily Star's Ryan Finley, Grandon went down with sprained meniscus on Tuesday during the team's first scrimmage. The redshirt freshman had been playing nickelback and taking reps with the first team defense. Stoops said the redshirt freshman did not make the trip to Fort Huachuca with the rest of the team and should be out about three weeks.

Unlike the rest of Arizona's preseason knee injuries, Grandon will not need surgery, a welcomed to the Wildcat's defense.

"It's not anything long term," Stoops said. "We're trying to continually adjust our secondary, get our best players on the field."

Stoops said Shaquille Richardson and Trevin Wade tried moving to the inside to compensate for Grandon's absence.

"I've Got Skills"

In a video from, the U.S. Army's "I've Got Skills" series takes a look at the Wildcats journey to Fort Huachuca in 2010. It profiles Sgt. Craig Hannum, who is based at Fort Huachuca, and UA's defensive coordinator Tim Kish, who coached at Army from 1984-1991. You'll see some familiar faces like linebackers Paul Vassallo and Jake Fischer, as well as former Wildcats Brooks Reed and Adam Grant among others.