Things have gone from bad to worse for Arizona football on the field.
The Wildcats have lost six straight, all by double digits. For the second straight year, they will not be going to a bowl game. They have fired three defensive coaches in the last few weeks. Attendance numbers hit new lows.
If you are a recruit being pursued by Arizona football, does that sound like a very appealing situation to walk into? No. It helps explain why UA’s 2020 class, which consists of 13 players, currently ranks 73rd in the country (18 spots lower than last year) and 10th in the Pac-12.
But head coach Kevin Sumlin, obviously, delivered a different pitch to some of the recruits, like four-star edge defenders Jason Harris and Regen Terry, who were visiting for Saturday’s 35-7 home loss to Utah: you can help us be better. And you won’t have to wait.
“We were just talking about that a few minutes ago with those guys. Those guys are here on official visit capacities and some guys unofficially, and in times like this things might look a little different because those guys are here with the early signing date,” Sumlin said Saturday. “They can see the opportunity to really help early and that’s really the message we’re giving to them because we got a lot of combination of freshmen and first-year players that are out there playing for us right now and we’ve obviously got some holes to fill. Those recruits can have an immediate impact on our football program.”
Only time will tell if recruits will be receptive to that message as the early signing period draws near on Dec. 18. Right now, it seems like it’s falling on deaf ears. Arizona has not had a commitment in more than a month.
In related news, The Athletic recently published a piece on UA’s recruiting failures in Arizona that paints an unsettling picture of UA’s approach to in-state recruiting.