Wildcats, Lumberjacks Square Off on Saturday
TUCSON, Ariz. — The Arizona Wildcats (0-2) and Northern Arizona Lumberjacks (0-2) face off in week three college football action this Saturday, Sept. 18 at Arizona Stadium. The familiar in-state foes will kick off at 7:00 p.m. MST with a television broadcast slated for the Pac-12 Networks.
Arizona looks to wrap up their non-conference slate with a victory before moving into their first Pac-12 schedule under first-year head coach Jedd Fisch.
Saturday's game is also the Wildcats annual Hispanic Heritage Night celebration. This tradition of celebrating the rich and vibrant Hispanic culture of Southern Arizona will include educational content and special performances from Mariachi Bands and Folklorico Dancers before the game and during halftime.
A complete game preview is below.
ARIZONA NOTES & NUMBERS
- Arizona is back at it for the second home game of the season with a matchup vs. Northern Arizona.
- Saturday's game will kick off at 7:07 p.m. MST on the Pac-12 Network. Chris Fisher and Arizona alum Lance Briggs will be on the call.
- Arizona has won 14-straight vs. Northern Arizona and have scored over 60 points in each of the last three matchups.
- The Wildcats were taken down by San Diego State last week by a score of 38-14 in Arizona Stadium.
- The Wildcats tallied two sacks on Saturday night, a solo sack from Jalen Harris and an assisted sack from Kyon Barrs and Trevon Mason. Arizona's two sacks against San Diego State matched the team's sack total from all five games in the 2020 season.
- Will Plummer threw his first career touchdown pass against San Diego State with a seven-yard completion to the corner of the end zone to Tayvian Cunningham in the fourth quarter.
- Anthony Pandy tied his career-high with 11 tackles vs. San Diego State. He leads Arizona with 19 tackles through two games played.
- Treydan Stukes notched two pass breakups on Saturday night against San Diego State - he is the first Wildcat to post two PBUs in a single game since Christian Roland-Wallace tallied two on Nov. 16, 2019 at Oregon.
- In the opener, Gunner Cruz set Arizona records for completions (34) and pass attempts (45) for a QB making his first start since at least 1980.
2 — Arizona's two sacks against San Diego State matched the team's sack total from all five games in the 2020 season.
3 — Former walk-on CB Treydan Stukes leads Arizona with three PBUs through two games.
7 — Kyle Ostendorp leads the Pac-12 with seven punts of 50 yards or more.
31 — Offensive lineman Donovan Laie has started the first 31 games of his career. Only eight other offensive linemen have started 30 or more consecutive games since Arizona began tracking game-by-game starters in 1993.
60 — Arizona has scored at least 60 points in each of their last three matchups vs. NAU.
71 — Kyle Ostendorp's career-best 71-yard punt is the longest by an Arizona punter since Keenyn Crier's 84-yard boot back in 2007.
WRAPPING UP SATURDAY AND LOOKING AHEAD: Jedd Fisch is looking for his first win as head coach of Arizona … Arizona is looking to snap its 14-game losing streak … Will Plummer threw his first-career touchdown to Tayvian Cunningham in the fourth quarter vs. SDSU … Cunningham finished the night with five catches for a team-high 81 yards. His five receptions tied his career high mark … The Wildcats tallied two sacks on Saturday night, a solo sack from Jalen Harris and an assisted sack from Kyon Barrs and Trevon Mason … Arizona's two sacks against San Diego State matched the team's sack total from all five games in the 2020 season … Anthony Pandy tied his career-high with 11 tackles … Mo Diallo tied his career-high with six tackles.
VERSUS NORTHERN ARIZONA: Arizona holds a record of 15-1 overall vs. NAU … Arizona has won the last 14 contests vs. NAU and are 14-0 all-time vs. the Lumberjacks in Tucson … The Wildcats are averaging 68 points per game vs. NAU in their last three contests … Arizona has allowed 24 points or fewer in 15 of their 16 games vs. NAU … Last time out vs. NAU, Arizona won 65-41 and rushed for 431 yards … Bam Smith had eight carries for 84 yards to go along with a touchdown reception and Michael Wiley had nine carries for 39 yards … Tayvian caught two touchdown passes and Thomas Reid III caught one … Anthony Pandy had two TFLs and Jalen Harris recorded one sack.
MR. YAC: Stanley Berryhill III has been outstanding for the Wildcats through two games thus far. A team-captain and one of the recipients of the No. 1 jersey, Berryhill leads Arizona with 17 receptions and 169 yards. Where the Tucson native does his most damage is after the ball is in his hands, hence the name Mr. YAC. Against San Diego State, he finished the game with 75 yards after the catch while also rushing for 26 yards. His play of the game was a 43-yard touchdown highlighted by a few broken tackles and some premier breakaway speed. Additionally, Berryhill's 12 catches vs. BYU is the most of any Pac-12 player this season and is tied for the second most of any player in the nation.
FBS Receptions per Game Leaders
|Trey McBride||Colorado State||10.5|
|Roderic Burns||North Texas||9.0|
|Stanley Berryhill III||Arizona||8.5|
Pac-12 Receptions Leaders
|Stanley Berryhill III||Arizona||17|
Pac-12 Receiving Yards per Game Leaders
|Stanley Berryhill III||USC||84.5|
|Calvin Jackson Jr.||Washington State||84.0|
THE PANDY MAN CAN: Senior linebacker Anthony Pandy is back for his fifth year as a Wildcat and has a large leadership role under first year head coach Jedd Fisch as he was named a team captain. Pandy leads the Arizona defense in tackles and is fifth in the Pac-12 with 19 through two games after tying his career-high with 11 vs. San Diego State last week.
KICKIN' KYLE: Sophomore punter Kyle Ostendorp has been stellar to begin the 2021 campaign. He opened the season vs. BYU with a trio of punts downed inside the 20, one of which pinned the Cougars at, their own 1-yard line, which eventually resulted in a safety. Against San Diego State in week two, he had an average of 52 yards per punt on 10 kicks, including a career-high 71-yard punt, which is the longest punt by an Arizona punter since Keenyn Crier's 84-yard punt back in 2007. Through two games, Ostendorp averages 45.8 yards per punt on 16 kicks. He has a Pac-12 high seven punts of 50 yards or more and has downed four inside the 20.
WILL THE THRILL: Will Plummer got extended time versus San Diego State in the second half and threw for 109 yards and a touchdown. The freshman found Tayvian Cunningham in the corner of the end zone in the fourth quarter for his first-career touchdown on a seven-yard pass. He also connected with Cunningham for a 54-yard pass late in the game on a spectacular throw and catch.
CRUZIN': Redshirt freshman Gunner Cruz made his first career start vs. BYU and was out there gunning it. The Gilbert, Ariz. native set Arizona records for completions (34) and pass attempts (45) for a QB making his first start since at least 1980. Both Anu Solomon and Grant Gunnell threw 44 passes in their debuts. Cruz finished the game with 336 passing yards and one touchdown to BJ Casteel. From the second quarter and on, Cruz was 32-40 for 328 yards.
Pac-12 Passing Yards Leaders
Pac-12 Completion % Leaders
Pac-12 Completions Leaders
APPLYING PRESSURE: Arizona matched their 2020 total vs. San Diego State with two sacks on the night; one by Jalen Harris whole Kyon Barrs and Trevon Mason split a sack. Harris' sack was the 14th of his career and is seven sacks shy of breaking into the Wildcats' all-time top 10. Against BYU, Arizona finished the game with eight TFLs, the most since Arizona had 10 vs. Colorado on Nov. 2, 2018. Not only that, eight different players had a hand in a tackle for a loss with Mason and Rashie Hodge Jr. leading the way with 1.5 The Mason/Hodge Jr. duo changed the momentum of the game in the third quarter breaking through for a safety after a brilliant punt by Kyle Ostendorp that was downed at the 1-yard line.
HEY TRE: Linebacker Treshaun Hayward comes to Arizona with already boasting a very successful career. The 2019 MAC Defensive Player of the Year played 39 games for Western Michigan and totaled 229 tackles, 16 TFLs and 5.5 sacks. Hayward was flat out dominant in 2019 as he was named an All-American by Sporting News and Phil Steele. The Ypsilanti, Mich. native finished the season with a conference-high 142 tackles and added in 10.5 TFLs. His 142 tackles was the third-most in the country and was one of five players to post 130+ tackles and 10+ TFLs. Through two games, Hayward is tied for second on the team with 12 tackles and also has half a tackle for a loss.
I AM #1: At the beginning of camp, Jedd Fisch announced he would be holding a competition for who gets to wear the No. 1 jersey for the season. The Monday of week 1, it was announced that team captains and Arizona natives Stanley Berryhill III and Jalen Harris would each don the No. 1 jersey. Berryhill III is Arizona's leading returning wide receiver while Harris registered 18 tackles and 2.5 for a loss last season.
O CAPTAIN! MY CAPTAIN!: Much like the NFL, head coach Jedd Fisch named team captains from the offense, defense and special teams unit… two from each unit to be exact:
Arizona 2021 Team Captains
|Stanley Berryhill III (WR)||Offense|
|Josh McCauley (OL)||Offense|
|Jalen Harris (DL)||Defense|
|Anthony Pandy (LB)||Defense|
|Lucas Havrisik (K)||Special Teams|
|Thomas Reid III (WR)||Special Teams|
STATE 48: The Wildcats roster features 34 players that call the state of Arizona home, including five players who stayed home in Tucson to continue their football careers. Arizona's 34 in-state players make up over 29% of the total roster. Among the notable Arizona natives are freshman safety Jaydin Young, sophomore running back Drake Anderson, redshirt freshman quarterback Gunner Cruz, redshirt sophomore wide receiver Jamarye Joiner, freshman quarterback Will Plummer, freshman running back Stevie Rocker Jr., junior linebacker Rashie Hodge Jr., redshirt junior defensive lineman Jalen Harris, redshirt senior offensive lineman Josh McCauley and sophomore offensive lineman Jordan Morgan.
Arizona Players from Arizona
|3 Jaydin Young||Peoria, Ariz.|
|6 Jason Harris||Gilbert, Ariz.|
|8 Drake Anderson||Chandler, Ariz.|
|9 Gunner Cruz||Gilbert, Ariz.|
|9 Gunner Maldonado||Chandler, Ariz.|
|10 Jamarye Joiner||Tucson, Ariz.|
|13 Luke Ashworth||Phoenix, Ariz.|
|15 Will Plummer||Gilbert, Ariz.|
|17 Regen Terry||Florence, Ariz.|
|17 Jaden White||Scottsdale, Ariz.|
|19 Kyle Ostendorp||Phoenix, Ariz.|
|20 Treydan Stukes||Litchfield Park, Ariz.|
|23 Stevie Rocker Jr.||Tucson, Ariz.|
|26 Jaden Clark||Phoenix, Ariz.|
|30 Anthony Gonzales||Phoenix, Ariz.|
|31 Trey Cartledge||Scottsdale, Ariz.|
|32 Jacob Meeker-Hackett||Tucson, Ariz.|
|35 Rashie Hodge Jr.||Phoenix, Ariz.|
|40 Ammon Allen||Mesa, Ariz.|
|46 Victor Zayas||Gilbert, Ariz.|
|47 Rourke Freeburg||Scottsdale, Ariz.|
|49 Jalen Harris||Gilbert, Ariz.|
|50 Josh McCauley||Mesa, Ariz.|
|51 Chandler Kelly||Chandler, Ariz.|
|52 Aaron Blackwell||Peoria, Ariz.|
|53 Malik Reed||Chandler, Ariz.|
|67 David Watson||Tucson, Ariz.|
|71 Jaxon McBride||Queen Creek, Ariz.|
|77 Jordan Morgan||Marana, Ariz.|
|79 Davis DiVall||Scottsdale, Ariz.|
|80 Connor Hutchings||Phoenix, Ariz.|
|84 Tristen D'Angelo||Anthem, Ariz.|
|86 Stanley Berryhill III||Tucson, Ariz.|
|88 Alex Lines||Gilbert, Ariz.|
FRESH FACES: Of Arizona's 45 newcomers, 17 of them are transfers from other FBS schools. Of the 17 transfers, eight of them started at least one game at their previous school and combine for 81 starts. Treshaun Hayward, the 2019 MAC Defensive Player of the Year, leads the group with 18 starts.
Transfers from FBS Schools
|Player (Pos.)||Previous School (career starts)|
|Drake Anderson (RB)||Northwestern (4)|
|Gunner Cruz (QB)||Washington State|
|Mo Diallo (DL)||Central Michigan (8)|
|Davis DiVall (OL)||Baylor|
|Jason Harris (LB)||Colorado|
|Treshaun Hayward (LB)||Western Michigan (18)|
|Kenny Hebert (LB)||Vanderbilt (7)|
|Rashie Hodge Jr. (LB)||New Mexico State (11)|
|Alex Lines (TE)||UNLV|
|Gunner Maldonado (S)||Northwestern|
|Clay Markoff (RB)||Washington State|
|Jordan McCloud (QB)||South Florida (17)|
|Malik Reed (LB)||Wisconsin|
|Jerry Roberts (LB)||Bowling Green (15)|
|Isaiah Rutherford (CB)||Notre Dame|
|Leevel Tatum III (DL)||Fresno State (1)|
|Ma'jon Wright (WR)||Middle Tennessee State|
WE GRADUATE: Of the 117 players currently on Arizona's roster, 26 have already graduated with a bachelor's degree. Below is a list of the student-athletes who have already earned their degree.
|Stanley Berryhill III||Literacy Learning & Leadership|
|JB Brown||Literacy Learning & Leadership|
|Edgar Burrola||Economy & Industry|
|Brian Casteel||Literacy Learning & Leadership|
|Mo Diallo||Community Development|
|Josh Donovan||Sports & Society|
|Paiton Fears||Science, Technology, Health & Society|
|Rourke Freeburg||Business Management|
|Jalen Harris||Criminal Justice Studies|
|Malik Hausman||Social Behavioral & Human Understanding|
|Lucas Havrisik||Literacy Learning & Leadership|
|Treshaun Hayward||Criminal Justice Studies|
|Rashie Hodge||Individualized Studies|
|Clay Markoff||Business Administration|
|Tre Mason||Social Behavioral & Human Understanding|
|Josh McCauley||Criminal Justice Studies|
|Jacob Meeker-Hackett||Animal Sciences|
|Anthony Pandy||Social Behavioral & Human Understanding|
|Thomas Reid III||Psychology|
|Jerry Roberts||Education & Human Development|
|Rhedi Short||General Studies - Economy & Industry|
|Leevel Tatum III||Agricultural Business|
|Bryce Wolma||Business Management|
WE EDUCATE WEDNESDAYS: Every Wednesday, Jedd Fisch brings in a guest speaker to talk to the team either in person or virtually about a myriad of subjects during We Educate Wednesday. Below is a list of a few speakers that have led We Educate Wednesday discussions.
- Dr. Richard Carmona – former United States Surgeon General
- Steve Kerr – Wildcat alum and Golden State Warriors Head Coach
- Jim Caldwell – Former NFL Head Coach
- Sean McVay – Los Angeles Rams Head Coach
- Pete Carroll – Super Bowl Champion and Seattle Seahawks Head Coach
WILDCATS IN THE NFL: As of week one, the Wildcats are once again well represented in the National Football League with nine former letterwinners active across the league. One of Arizona's most prestigious alums, tight end Rob Gronkowski, returned from retirement in 2020 to rejoin his longtime quarterback Tom Brady with the Tampa Bay Buccaneers. Over 10 seasons in New England and Tampa Bay, Gronkowski has hauled in 8,574 yards and 88 touchdowns. Quarterback Nick Foles is in his 10th NFL season after rewriting the Wildcats record books during his time in Tucson. The most recent Wildcats to make the transition to the NFL are running back Gary Brightwell (New York Giants) and defensive end Roy Lopez (Houton Texans). For a complete list of former Wildcats in the NFL, see the comprehensive chart below.
Current Wildcats on NFL Rosters
|Nick Foles||QB||Chicago Bears|
|Rob Gronkowski||TE||Tampa Bay Buccaneers|
|Jace Whittaker||CB||Arizona Cardinals|
|Gary Brightwell||RB||New York Giants|
|Nick Folk||K||New England Patriots|
|J.J. Taylor||RB||New England Patriots|
|Roy Lopez||DL||Houston Texans|
|Dane Cruikshank||DB||Tennessee Titans|
|Demetrius Flannigan-Fowles||LB||San Francisco 49ers|