With the Arizona Wildcats season just around the corner, we are back with our first football roundtable of the year!
Let us know if you agree or what your thoughts are in the comments! And if you have questions of your own, leave those here for Tuesday's Twitterbag!
1. On a scale of 1-10, how concerned are you about the offensive line?
Gabe Encinas: As of now, about 4. I feel confident with Freddie Tagaloa, Jacob Alsadek and Lene Maiava holding down their part of the line. As a 4th year guy, Bundage should be fine at center when it comes to the smarts of playing center, the concern would be the consistency of his snaps. Zach Hemmila and T.D. Gross are names that are coming up for that left guard spot. With Tagaloa next to them, it should be fine. But the loss of Jordan Poland and then Carter Wood will definitely hurt if we start to see some injuries on the line, raising my concern to about an 8 if any of those first four guys go down.
Ryan Kelapire: 5. I think anytime your offense is in the shotgun 100% of the time and you don't have an experienced center that's used to snapping the ball, it's at least a little bit concerning. As of now, it appears as if Cayman Bundage will be the center after switching from guard. He was solid at guard, but the center position, needless to say, is a lot different. I expect there to be an adjustment period, and we may see a bad snap or two here and there. Thankfully the Wildcats can afford those types of errors in the first three games, but it better be sorted out before Pac-12 play starts.
Jason Bartel: I'll step this up to a six. The starting five should be good, but if one guy goes down, all of the sudden it's a giant crapshoot behind them. RichRod has been concerned with depth there all fall, and you gotta go with his feelings over anyone else's, right?
2. Who do you think will lead the team in interceptions?
GE: It's close between Will Parks and Cam Denson, but I'm going to go with Cam Denson. He felt a little rushed coming in last fall and having to start a few games pretty early in his career. He's bulked up and he's an athletic playmaker that will be able to get his hands on a few passes. He's more vulnerable to giving up big plays. I think teams will still continue to attack him, which will give him plenty of opportunities to make a play, and plenty to get burned.
RK: Someone is going to have to take Tra'Mayne Bondurant's role as the turnover creator for the defense, and I think it'll be Cam Denson. Denson only had two starts as a freshman, yet managed to have two interceptions, which was tied for the second-best on the team. With Jonathan McKnight gone, Denson will now start and see a drastic increase in playing time. Add that to an offseason of development, and it's easy to see why he could lead the team in interceptions.
JB: I'm going with the former receiver, and the only guy who had an interception in Saturday's scrimmage, and that's DaVonte' Neal. I'm all in on this Neal at corner thing. He's looked great since the second he changed sides of the ball, and I think he's going to be making some big plays if quarterbacks throw his way.
3. Outside of Scooby, who is Arizona's most important player?
GE: Anu Solomon. The weapons are there for him, it'll be up to him to read the defense and make the correct throws. The offense only goes as far as he does and he should be ready for year two. If he were to go down for an extended period of time, or even miss one or two games, I'm not so confident in Jerrard Randall and Brandon Dawkins to step up.
RK: Anu Solomon. The team can only go as far as Anu takes them. This is true for most quarterbacks, but it was especially true for Solomon last season. When you take a look at his splits, there was a significant difference between his performances in wins and losses. Anu is also a considerable step up from the other quarterbacks on the roster, so if anything were to happen to him, it would be a major detriment to the team. And I'm not sure there's a better way to measure a player's importance than that.
JB: Maybe I'm overthinking this a little bit, but Freddie Tagaloa seems hugely important this year. For Solomon to be able to do the things mentioned above, Tagaloa's going to have to keep that blindside clean. And I don't think there are any linemen that could step in for Tagaloa in that role.
4. Do you like Thursday night games?
GE: As a student in Eller, yes. You end class on Thursday, have the game at night and there's no class on Friday. Then on Saturday you're free to do what you want and watch any of the big games. However, from a general fan perspective, such as my parents (ASU season ticket holders), they hate it. Having to leave work early, fight the traffic of the game and kids leaving school just isn't ideal. It also kills the atmosphere and the ambiance of tailgating all day, so I totally understand why some do not like it.
RK: No. The atmosphere on campus for Thursday games is nothing like it is on Saturdays. Plus, having school on gameday and the morning after just makes the day so much less enjoyable. College football belongs on Saturdays. Period.
JB: Like Gabe said, the only real benefit is that you can sit back on Saturday and relax and watch the rest of the college football world eat itself alive. Although I will say that Thursday night Oregon game in 2007 was one of the best things I've ever been a part of, and it made class Friday morning super interesting to say the least.