Roundup: Pac-12 South clash in Tucson kicks off Week 4
The Pac-12 football weekend begins with a Friday night Pac-12 South showdown in Tucson between Utah and Arizona, and the Arizona Daily Star tells us what we should look for in the Arizona-Utah game (7:30 p.m. PT/8:30 p.m. MT, FOX Sports 1).
Lynn Worthy of The Salt Lake Tribune writes that Utah’s defense will face a big test at Arizona, as the Wildcats are averaging a whopping 328 rushing yards per game and quarterback Brandon Dawkins is coming off his best performance of the season (albeit against a lower-tier Group of 5 school in UTEP).
HUGE game Saturday afternoon in Berkeley between two 3-0 teams in Cal and USC (12:30 p.m. PT, ABC), and Rusty Simmons features Cal safety Jaylinn Hawkins, a converted wide receiver who has turned into a valuable cog in the Cal secondary. He and the boys back there will have their hands full with Sam Darnold and those USC receivers.
Injury news on the Trojan front – USC linebacker Porter Gustin will miss the Cal game because of toe and biceps injuries and is out indefinitely as a result.
The Cougs will try to improve to 4-0 Saturday afternoon at home against Nevada (3 p.m. PT, Pac-12 Network), and here’s an interesting article from Andy Staples of Sports Illustrated on how college football might be different today if Mike Leach became a high school football coach like he wanted to back in 1996. Leach applied for the head coaching gig at Key West High but didn’t get the job – would the Air Raid be this prevalent in college football if he got the high school job?
The #Pac12AfterDark slate begins at least in part with Oregon and Arizona State in Tempe (7 p.m. PT, Pac-12 Networks), and Tyson Alger of The Oregonian/OregonLive gives us five things to watch in the Oregon-ASU game.
Watch what Arizona State president Michael Crow had to say on the ASU football coaching situation in this video courtesy of The Arizona Republic.
The 2016 Pac-12 Football Championship Game rematch is set for 7 p.m. PT/8 p.m. MT in Boulder (FOX Sports 1), and this is what Washington coach Chris Petersen has to say about preparing for Colorado.
Brent Schrotenboer of USA TODAY Sports catches up with former Colorado wide receiver Mike Pritchard, who will be at Folsom Field Saturday with the Amway Coaches Poll Trophy that is awarded to the winner of the College Football Playoff (it will be in Boulder on Saturday). Nice Q&A here with the former Buff and NFLer (go Falcons).
The last game to go final will probably be UCLA-Stanford on The Farm (7:30 p.m. PT, ESPN), and Tom FitzGerald notes that Stanford quarterback Keller Chryst needs to shake off a bad performance against San Diego State, a game in which he went only 9 of 20 through the air for 72 yards and two picks.
On the other sideline, UCLA coach Jim Mora wants to snap his losing streak against the Cardinal, notes Thuc Nhi Nguyen. The Bruins are winless against the Cardinal with Mora at the helm. And as the Bruins get ready to head to The Farm, GoStanford.com highlights how Jackie Robinson fared against the Cardinal while at UCLA in football, basketball and baseball. Pretty interesting read about an American pioneer.
And we'll end on this – a young boy brought Oregon State quarterback Jake Luton a cupcake while he was staying in a Spokane hospital before returning home to Corvallis (Pac-12 Networks Newsroom). Luton sent a nice thank-you note to the boy, Silas, on Twitter, which you can also find in the link. The Beavs are off this weekend.