The Arizona Wildcats travel up to Tempe on Saturday to try and keep the Territorial Cup in Tucson for another year.
This week's three keys are brought to you by a guy that used to play football for the Arizona State Sun Devils. That guy? Nick Nolte.
Nolte played football all over the state of Arizona, including being on scholarship at ASU. So, we'll use his post-football career of acting to tell you why ASU will not beat the 'Cats.
1. Run All Night
Well, really run all day. Nick Wilson is not on this week's injury report, and of course, there's always the threat of Jared Baker and Jerrard Randall out of the backfield as well. We even saw a little running ability from Anu Solomon last week, who may or may not play on Saturday. If the Wildcats are going to have any success on offense this game, they'll have to establish the run game early, something that didn't happen the last time they went to Tempe.
2. The Golden Bowl
Arizona is bowl eligible. ASU is not. Yeah, they have another game against Cal next week, but how sweet would it be to keep the Devils at five wins, and drop them below .500 for the season? I would imagine this has come up among the players this week, and an Arizona win should guarantee the Wildcats stay in state for the Cactus Bowl in Chase Field.
3. Under Fire
The Wildcats got an excellent performance from the defensive line last week, and will need another one this Saturday. We all saw Mike Bercovici succeed late in the game last year, so the likes of Reggie Gilbert, Jeff Worthy and Jack Banda will need to make their way into the backfield on a regular basis. Also, Tellas Jones has emerged as an above average edge rusher. If Jones is used appropriately in this one, he could come up with some eye-popping numbers. Bold prediction: If Arizona has more than five tackles for loss (had seven last week), they will win.