Hey, there was a bright spot in the Arizona Wildcats’ 41-14 loss to USC!
Junior wide receiver Brian Casteel was named to Pro Football Focus’ Pac-12 First Team of the Week after hauling in five of six targets for 105 yards and two touchdowns against the Trojans.
Arizona linebacker Tony Fields II and defensive backs Lorenzo Burns and Jace Whittaker received Second Team honors. (Note that the strength of the opponent and PFF’s player grades also factor into these weekly honors, not just counting stats.)
Next up we have the Pac-12 Team of the Week for week 8! The entire team can be seen below. https://t.co/g0ABn44tRu pic.twitter.com/Wg2QUPYv0o— PFF College (@PFF_College) October 22, 2019
Unfortunately, Casteel’s play had little impact on the game as both touchdowns came in the fourth quarter when the Wildcats were trailing by 34 points.
The first touchdown was a 56-yard swing pass from Grant Gunnell that Casteel took to the house for Arizona’s first points. The second score was an intermediate throw down the middle from Gunnell that Casteel reeled in in double coverage. (The highlights can be seen below.)
For the season, Casteel has a team-high 27 catches for 283 yards and three touchdowns. His reception total is a little inflated because he has caught several shovel passes, which are more like handoffs.
Arizona has a very balanced passing attack this season, with no player having more than 290 receiving yards. Casteel’s best attribute has been his ability to generate yards after the catch, which stems from his background as a running back in high school.
Casteel had a long catch-and-run touchdown that was waved off against UCLA because his knee was down when he was hauling in Gunnell’s swing pass.
Gunnell ➡️ Casteel, 56 yards for the TD! #BearDown— Arizona Football (@ArizonaFBall) October 20, 2019
Gunnell goes back to Casteel for their second TD connection of the night! #BearDown— Arizona Football (@ArizonaFBall) October 20, 2019