Arizona still has a kicking problem.
Casey Skowron went out there and promptly missed his first field goal attempt. After making the next two, he had his fourth attempt blocked right at the end of the first half. Then after a late Jared Baker touchdown and a recovered onside kick by Cayleb Jones, Skowron missed a 36 yard field goal that would have won the game. And then to make it worse, he tried to sell a roughing the kicker penalty. Unsuccessfully, of course.
Here's some other takeaways from Arizona's first loss of 2014.
DaVonte' Neal's reappearance: After being somewhat MIA the first five games of the season, Neal was a huge part of the passing game, especially early on. He also contributed with Arizona's biggest special teams play of the year so far with a 43 yard punt return in the first quarter. Also showing some swag with the most casual fair catch in the history of punts in the second quarter.
Running back depth: Nick Wilson did not play, as expected, and Terris Jones-Grigsby was injured in the first half after taking a helmet to the sternum. That led to Jared Baker getting his turn in the backfield, and he took advantage. A couple of scores, and some hard running. Cayman Bundage not playing hurt the run game as a whole, but Baker proved that there is a lot of depth there.
Jarvis McCall stinks: The redshirt freshman corner had another rough night. He really has yet to have a good night so far this year. Also, Jourdon Grandon is not good. Both got beat on long USC runs in the first half where a simple slowing down of Javorius Allen would have sufficed.
Cody Kessler's first INT of 2014: To the cornerback who does not stink on this Arizona team, Jonathan McKnight. It was a great play by McKnight too after Kessler scrambled around forever. McKnight then got shaken up in the fourth quarter, giving Cam Denson some high-leverage playing time in a meaningful game.
Defensive line came back to Earth: Speaking of Kessler scrambling around forever, it happened a lot the entire night. Arizona's d-line was able to take advantage of Oregon's injuries up front last week, but against a healthy Trojan o-line, the Wildcats struggled mightily. It was just bad. Allen set a career-high in rushing yards on the night thanks to this Wildcat line being out-manned by USC.
Pac-12 Officiating: Was on full display. Larry Scott addressed the issue at halftime, but several unnecessary reviews, and a review that changed a play from an illegal forward pass on Anu Solomon to a roughing the passer penalty was the weirdest one. Also, the refs called a low block on the "fair catch caller" on a punt against Arizona, and then named a number that wasn't DaVonte' Neal. You know the Pac-12 isn't going to get a team in the College Football Playoff because of a blown call in the Championship Game.