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Arizona Basketball New Mexico Preview

Ronnie Stoffle and Adam Green preview Arizona Basketball’s upcoming match with New Mexico. The team also discusses ASU and Bobby Hurley’s recent success and what it means for Wildcat Basketball.

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A Guide to College Football Bowl Season for the Casual Fan

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A Guide to College Football Bowl Season for the Casual Fan: Part One

 Ryan Ringdahl and Bryant Conger | December 12, 2017

College football fields 41 bowls but only three playoff games. This makes total sense. Wildcat Radio is here to bring you, the casual fan, the most important aspects of each game.  All times Eastern…sorry.

Las Vegas Bowl
No. 25 Boise State vs. Oregon
3:30 p.m., ABC
Sam Boyd Stadium
Las Vegas

Boise State is the General Electric of college football: a former behemoth that is still pretty good but relies on shaky business plans like light bulb regulations or staying in the Mountain West.

The Broncos face an Oregon team with fast running backs including: Royce Freeman (1,475 yards, 6.0 yards per carry, 16 td); Kani Benoit (573 yards, 7.2 yards per carry, 10 td); and head coach Willie Taggart who ran a 4.5 40-time when he skipped town for Tallahassee.

This should be a great game. Boise State has a 1k+ yard running back (Alexander Mattison), a 1k+ yard receiver (Cedrick Wilson), and a good defense. Oregon has a great quarterback in Justin Herbert, a strong ground attack, and 9 assistant coaching vacancies.

R+L Carriers New Orleans Bowl
Troy vs. North Texas
1 p.m., ESPN
Mercedes-Benz Superdome
New Orleans

Earlier this year Troy did everyone a favor by beating LSU in Baton Rouge, proving once more that, outside of its top three teams, the SEC is the football version of Top Gun’s beach volleyball scene. Losing to Lane Kiffin twice is the most exciting thing about North Texas. 

Celebration(!!!) Bowl
Grambling vs. North Carolina A&T
Noon, ABC
Mercedes-Benz Stadium
Atlanta 

IT’S A CELEBRATION! The Unofficial Historically Black College and University Football Championship features the winners of the Southwestern Athletic Conference and the Mid-Eastern Athletic Conference, which performed significantly better since the string of military victories over ISIS has absolutely nothing to do with the Middle East.

Fair warning: there will be a lot of yellow on the field in this game, and not the coo,l electric ladyland-Oregon kind of yellow. Or the penalty flag kind. Ok, maybe that kind. Also, band camp.

AutoNation Cure Bowl
Western Kentucky vs. Georgia State
2:30 p.m., CBSSN
Camping World Stadium
Orlando, Florida

When former MLB prospect and Western Kentucky quarterback White Mike, Mike White was asked about his shift to football he said, “I’m glad I decided to play football because I’m definitely living it up. 

Hell yeah, White Mike, Mike White. Keep doing what you are doing. White has thrown for 3,800 yards, completed 65% of his passes, and thrown 24 touchdowns with just 7 interceptions. Just don’t go full Johnny Manzel on us though, Mike White White Mike – never go full Johnny Manzel.

Keep a look out for Western Kentucky’s star linebacker Joel Iyiegbuniwe (105 tackles, 9 tackles for loss, 3 forced fumbles) who is as terrifying as it is to pronounce his name.

Georgia State’s best player is a 5’8 wide receiver. Good luck, Georgia State.

Walter White GILDAN New Mexico Bowl
Marshall vs. Colorado State
4:30 p.m., ESPN
Branch Field at Dreamstyle* Stadium
Albuquerque, New Mexico

Who is New Mexico trying to fool? Nothing in Albuquerque is nice enough to be called “Dreamstyle.” This bowl features a Colorado State team that has low-key been pumping out NFL caliber receivers. Keep an eye on Biletnikoff Finalist Michael Gallup (86 receptions, 1,311 yards, 7 td) as he faces off against Marshall’s corner Chris Jackson who has 3 picks and more non-offensive touchdowns than the entire CSU team combined.

Fun fact, Marshall chose the Thundering Herd as their athletic mascot over the following choices: Boogercats, Normalists, Judges, The Big Green, and Green Gobblers. They had to have multiple votes to choose between being represented by a powerful herd of charging bison or by the large impression of a color. They chose wisely. Looking at you, Stanford.

Raycom Media Camellia Bowl
Middle Tennessee vs. Arkansas State
8 p.m., ESPN
Cramton Bowl
Montgomery, Alabama

After bowling in Hawaii and the Bahamas the past two seasons, MTSU coach Rick Stockstill is thrilled his team landed in a bowl that is only a 5-hour drive from their campus in Murfreesboro (real name). He just bought $10k in tickets to give away to MTSU.  

The Red Wolves (which is an actual species of wolf that is super rare and not just a case of someone attaching their favorite color to their favorite thing to make it a mascot) have a quarterback whose real name is Justice and who has thrown for over 3500 yards and 34 scores while also leading the team in rushing touchdowns.

Dec. 19
Cheribundi Tart Cherry Boca Raton Bowl
Akron vs. Florida Atlantic
7 p.m., ESPN
Howard Schnellenberger Field at FAU Stadium
Boca Raton, Florida

It’s the Lane Kiffin Bowl!

Sombrero Lane Kiffin.

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WWE head hunter Lane Kiffin

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American Ambassador Lane Kiffin

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The Lane Train

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And he’s available, SMU.

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Dec. 20
DXL Frisco Bowl
Louisiana Tech vs. SMU
8 p.m., ESPN
Toyota Stadium
Frisco, Texas

SMU, which stands for Southern Methodist University, is a Methodist school that has specifically asked media members not to refer to them as a Methodist school, which basically tracks with much of the Methodist congregation.

The Mustangs have a dynamic offense including an exciting quarterback (Ben Hicks), a 1k+ yard rusher (Xavier Jones), and two 1k+ yard receivers (Trey Quinn, Courtland Sutton). Unfortunately, SMU displays the same contempt towards playing defense as it does towards its own denominational heritage.

Quick! Aside from forcing a lot of interceptions, in ten seconds say something interesting about Louisiana Tech. You lose.

Dec. 21
Bad Boy Mowers Gasparilla Bowl
Temple vs. Florida International
8 p.m., ESPN
Tropicana Field
St. Petersburg, Florida 

The head football coach for Florida International, which is located in Miami Florida -- is Butch Davis, a man who was Miami’s head coach for two separate stints and a man who openly lobbied to return for a third time when Al Golden flamed out in 2015.

Come on Butch. You’re better than this. Don’t move next door to your ex-girlfriend. How many times do you think Davis has sported a false moustache and attended Miami alumni events as “Hermano Alias” and asked boosters if they “ever miss that cool cat Butch Davis who brought all the ladies to the U games?”

There are a couple of defensive players to watch including FIU lineman Fermin Silva (45 tackles, 14 tackles for loss, 6 quarterback hurries) and cornerback Brad Muhammad (4 interceptions, 5 pass breakups, 51 tackles).

Also keep an eye on Temple lineman Sharif Finch (76 tackles, 14.5 tackles for loss, 6 qb hurries) and defensive back Dalvon Randall (4 interceptions, 73 tackles, 6.5 tackles for loss).

Temple’s head coach is Geoff Collins, who spells his name with a G but isn’t even well known enough for it to bother people.

Dec. 22
Bahamas Bowl
UAB vs. Ohio
12:30 p.m., ESPN
Thomas A. Robinson National Stadium
Nassau, Bahamas

Ah yes, the Bahamas bowl featuring two teams that will finally experience what life would be have been like if they had received scholarships from Miami or USC. The combination of beautiful weather and two functional, exciting quarterbacks (A.J. Erdely & Nathan Rourke have a combined 38 rushing touchdowns) ensure this game will be blacked out in Big-10 country. 

Famous Idaho Potato Bowl
Central Michigan vs. Wyoming
4 p.m., ESPN
Lyle Smith Field at Albertsons Stadium
Boise, Idaho

The field is blue and Famous Idaho Potatoes are delicious. And this regular fixture will haunt your nightmares for years to come.  Do you need any more reasons to watch this game?

Fine.

Wyoming’s 6’5 QB Josh Allen is the latest in the line of Flacco/Bortles/Wentz quarterbacks who went to low-prestige schools, put up underwhelming numbers, and were drafted ahead of guys like Brees/Wilson/Mayfield because they fit a physical profile. Waiting for Allen is the most ball-hawking secondary in the country, having intercepted one pass out of every 20 thrown at them.

Also, we are never allowed to forget that Butch Jones once coached a Central Michigan team that had both JJ Watt and Antonio Brown at the same time and went 8-6 in the MAC. He was then hired by Tennessee.

Dec. 23
Birmingham Bowl
Texas Tech vs. South Florida
Noon, ESPN
Legion Field 

It’s not a good sign for Texas Tech fans when one must google “is Kliff Kingsburry still head coach?” (yes) and “Texas Tech pass defense ranking” (124th) before previewing this bowl game.

Things don’t get better. The Red Raiders are about to face a pissed off South Florida team featuring Quintin Flowers, Darius Tice, and Charlie Strong.

The Bulls are a good team. They field a strong defense and have playmakers that will make Tech fans wish that they also offered Jimbo Fisher $75 million dollars to switch jobs in three years.

Lockheed Martin Armed Forces Bowl
San Diego State vs. Army
3:30 p.m., ESPN
Amon G. Carter Stadium
Fort Worth, Texas

The football in this game should be a lot of fun. San Diego State features Heisman finalist Sonic The Hedgehog Rashaad Penny at running back. A player who produced 429 yards (not including a 70-yard td called back for holding) in a single game. Army has the triple option.

The uniform quality in this game will also be top notch as SDSU has the freaking Aztec calendar on their helmets and Army broke out some epic all-white uniforms to sleazily camouflage in the snow honor the Panda Commandos for the Army-Navy game.

Also, get excited to view roughly a hundred commercials that make the imminent arrival of our drone-enforced skynet-style surveillance state look really cool and not at all dystopic.

Dollar General Bowl
Appalachian State vs. Toledo
7 p.m., ESPN
Ladd-Peebles Stadium
Mobile, Alabama

For being located in, you know, Toledo, the Rockets have a lot going for them:

Logan Woodside is a good quarterback (3,700 yards, 65% completion, 28 td, 8 int); Terry Swanson is a good running back (1,300 yards, 5.7 yards per carry, 14 td); and Diaontae Johnson is a great wide receiver (1,257 yards, 13 td).

Appalachian State has been the Devo of College Football for 10 years – still cashing royalty checks from that win over Michigan in 2007.

Dec. 24
Hawai'i Bowl
Fresno State vs. Houston
8:30 p.m., ESPN
Hawaiian Tel Federal Credit Union Field at Aloha Stadium
Honolulu

The Hawaii Bowl is broadcast on the mainland at night while the sun is still shining bright in Maui. That means on this one, beautiful moment the night will be bright, and full of Ed Oliver – a mythical force of devastation who moonlights as a defensive lineman for the University of Houston.

Fresno St has an elite offensive line that ranks top 5 in the nation in both sacks allowed and tackles for loss allowed. But those stats were compiled playing against mortals.

Oliver took a while to find his form this season, with 3.5 tackles for loss and 0 sacks through the first 5 games of the season. Unfortunately, Fresno St has to deal with the guy who got 11.5 tfl and 5.5 sacks in his last 6 games.

Stay tuned for part two of Wildcat Radio’s bowl preview series.

Arizona beats Alabama, Bowl Pool & Contest Results

Wildcat Radio talks Arizona Basketball's win over Alabama, announce their bowl pool contest, preview the first round of bowls, and unveil their regular season contest winners. 

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A Completely Uncalled for 2017 Oregon State Football Review

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A Completely Uncalled for 2017 Oregon State Football Review

Gary Andersen’s Future Former Team

Ryan Ringdahl | December 6, 2017

*To process this Oregon State review at the proper emotional level at which it was intended, please click this link and listen to the song on a loop. Thanks.

Overall
It wasn’t supposed to end like this. This was supposed to be the pit stop. If Gary Andersen was the hero in an RPG then Oregon State was the quaint hamlet on the road to the dark and foreboding castle. Corvallis was where Andersen was supposed to purchase various heirlooms and thoughtlessly shatter clay pots for rupees belonging to hapless townsfolk. This was the place to level up before the Big -10 battle ahead. But Gary Andersen didn’t just fail to purchase the vitally important sword available at a discount price, he took the game back to GameStop and sold it for pennies on the dollar. The result was a 1-11 season, a new coach, and a Beaver fanbase that stopped watching college football eight weeks ago.

Quarterback
Junior College transfer Jake Luton's big arm coupled with two dozen* 6’5 receivers injected some energy into Oregon State’s passing game. Luton produced nearly as many 10+ yard plays (63) as the Beavers accumulated all of last year. Luton was fun to watch. He was kind of a mess but at least he was exciting and had the ability to gun a pass 30 yards down the field. To be fair, the team that actually caught said 30-yard passes was always a gamble but, again, at least he was exciting.

Then Jake Luton broke his back. And all the happiness and hope got carried out of Corvallis on a stretcher.

Lucky for Beaver fans, experienced starter Darrell Garretson was in the wings and ready to fill in as...hahahahaha…sorry, that’s not fair to anyone. Garretson was not good. He threw for just 146 yards per game, dished out 8 picks, 6 touchdowns, and completed 57% of his passes. But hey, at least Oregon State fully utilized the behemoth of a running back they had in Ryan Naal. Right? RIGHT?

Wildcat Radio's Preseason Wild Speculation Grade: C+
Wildcat Radio's End of Season Grade: D

* Estimate has a 96% confidence level with an 8 player margin of error

Running Back
When Gary Andersen abruptly left Oregon State and left TWELVE MILLION DOLLARS ON THE TABLE our initial reaction was, “good, that guy didn’t utilize Ryan Nall enough and that may or may not have cost us some money with a definitely not shady totally legitimate offshore gambling probability speculation website.” Nall is a monster. He’s 6’2, 240 pounds, he runs hard and he can catch the ball out of the backfield. How many undersized college defensive players are lining up to go toe-to-toe with Nall 20 times a game?

 The problem was that Andersen was only giving Nall the ball 13 times each game. It was infuriating. Particularly because Luton was able to keep defenses honest through the air. Once Andersen was out, Nall saw an uptick in carries – and a dip in productivity. 


Coach Andersen/Luton at Q Nall - 13.25 carries, 80.75 yards, 6.1 per carry
Coach Hall/Garretson at Q Nall - 17.36 carries, 78.1 yards, 4.5 per carry

Keep in mind, that the injury to Luton meant that opposing teams stacked the box against Oregon State. Still, it’s not the kind of numbers we expected from Nall. Fellow running back Artavis Pierce, who may be making the drastic mistake of shortening his name to ‘Art’, contributed 323 yards on a healthy 4.8-yard average, and Senior Thomas Tyner also pitched in 297 yards on 4.6 yards per carry. This unit, which finished 9th in the Pac-12, was probably Oregon State’s second-best unit on the field. Good times. 

Wildcat Radio's Preseason Wild Speculation Grade: A
Wildcat Radio's End of Season Grade: B

Receiver
Oregon State used the Bernie Sanders approach to its passing distribution – dishing out a little something for everyone. Oregon State’s top five receivers all caught between 27 and 34 balls. This doesn’t mean they were good. The Beaver receiving corps hauled in a dismal 11 touchdowns this season. For context, eight players in the Pac-12 including Arizona’s Zach Green (don’t know who Zach Green is? You have proven our point) collected 11 touchdowns on their own. Junior tight end Noah Togiai led the team with 461 receiving yards and did his best to show the Pac-12 that, contrary to popular coaching opinion, tight ends are people too. But frankly, unless you are Stanford, it’s never a good sign when your top receiver is shaped like a giant refrigerator. Frowny face.

Wildcat Radio's Preseason Wild Speculation Grade: B-
Wildcat Radio's End of Season Grade: C

Offensive Line
Throughout the entire season, Oregon State’s offensive line kept their quarterback(s) upright and cleared decent lanes for the Beaver running back corps. This was a sneaky good unit, only having allowing 18 sacks this year, right in line with respectable teams like Stanford and Washington, and allowed three separate running backs to average more than 4.5 yards per carry This all while defenses showed the same respect towards the Beaver passing game that one should demonstrate to the refinement of Nic Cage’s acting career. Say what you will about the artist formerly known as Oregon State’s head coach, Mr. Andersen can coach up some linemen. 

Wildcat Radio's Preseason Wild Speculation Grade: A
Wildcat Radio's Midseason Reality Check Grade: A

Defensive Line
Nothing about Oregon State’s defense went remotely well at all, starting with their defensive line. This unit tallied the fewest sacks in the conference with 14. Total. As a team. Over 12 games. The Oregon Ducks whom, if you haven’t paid attention, haven’t been known for their defensive play as of late, sacked opposing quarterbacks 32 times. And they were 5th in the conference.

The Beaver rushing defense was just as bad. They allowed 5.5 yards per carry and surrendered 35 rushing touchdowns. Only three teams in the country allowed more touchdowns on the ground: Eastern Carolina Pirates, the San Jose State Spartans, and the Louisiana Lafayette Ragin Cajuns – and at least those schools have awesome mascots.

Salani Vakameilalo led the defensive line with three tackles for a loss. Let’s just move on.

Wildcat Radio's Preseason Wild Speculation Grade: C
Wildcat Radio's End of Year Grade: F

Linebacker
Before the season we tried to guess how Oregon State’s Belichecian shapeless linebacking mob would perform behind a few defensive line anchors. Statistically, the interchangeable amoeba-like swarm of backers/blitzers consistently produced behind their own line but not in the opponents’ backfield. Manase Hungalu chalked up 97 tackles, 6 tackles for a loss, 4 pass breakups, 4 qb hurries, 2 interceptions, and a defensive touchdown. He’s good.

Aside from Hungalu, however, no player on Oregon State’s linebacking corps contributed to pressuring the quarterback or stuffing players in the backfield. And, while fellow linebackers Jonathan Willis and Bright Ugwoegbu combined for 123 tackles, one must ask, was this a product of strong talent or a complete breakdown of the defensive line? If your opponent runs in circles with his gun pointed at the ground in Call of Duty and you shoot him it still counts as a kill – same with tackles in college football.

Wildcat Radio's Preseason Wild Speculation Grade: C+
Wildcat Radio's End of Year Grade: C-

Secondary
Even before Freshman All-American Xavier Crawford joined quarterback Jake Luton on the chiropractor’s table there was no lock down corner on this team; this defense was as unlocked as a public bathroom and as regularly dumped on. Opposing QB’s are averaging 66.6% completion for an average of 8.3 yards, both worst in the conference by a significant margin. Oftentimes, less talented defenses will rely on turnovers to even the odds. Not Oregon State. They forced just 7 interceptions while surrendering 22 passing touchdowns. On the bright side, the defensive backfield at least received plenty of opportunities to work on their tackling form. Safeties Jalen Moore and David Morris recorded a combined 150 tackles but did little else to cause havoc in the secondary. 


Wildcat Radio's Preseason Wild Speculation Grade: B+
Wildcat Radio's End of Year Grade: D

Conclusion
Beaver’s fans have a lot to celebrate about this season, mostly that it ended. Also, many of the young players who were supposed to be exciting really are exciting, and very likely coming back next year regardless of who will be coaching them.

On that note, please indulge us by clicking here for appropriate soundtrack.

***intentionally punny trumpets sounding***

(Bob Barker voice)
Welcome, Beavers and Beavrettes, to the College Coaching Carousel! Tell ‘em what they’ve won, Jim.

(Jim voice)
This year’s prize is a low risk-moderate reward (co)-offensive coordinator!!! 

***crowd groans***

(Jim voice)
Twenty years-ago this beach boy from Pasadena walked onto the football team in Corvallis and straight into our hearts leading the Beavers to an 11-1 campaign that ended with a Fiesta Bowl Trophy filled with Doritos MVP sauce.

(Vanna voice)
That Jonathan Smith. He’s so…competent.

(Jim voice)
After starting his career as a grad assistant with the Beavers, this quarterback whisperer hitched his (co)wagon to the Chris Peterson Star! 

(Vanna voice)
That Chris Peterson, he’s so…competent.

(Jim voice)
You bet, Vanna in his short time at the (co)helm, this young savant transformed the Huskies from offensive zeros to heroes, finishing each of the last two seasons in the top two of the PAC12 in scoring offense! 

***Applause***

This low-mileage model hasn’t ever even had an entire power conference offense to captain! But then that overlooked beach boy from Pasadena hadn’t ever quarterbacked a college team before. Sometimes dreams really do come true! Right? right?

Foster Farms Bowl, National Titles, & Coaching Changes

Wildcat Radio (@WildcatRadioAZ) gives their knee jerk reaction to Arizona Football's matchup against the Purdue Boilermakers in the Foster Farms Bowl. The guys talk about the other eight Pac-12 bowl matchups, try to find a new home for Mike Leach, savage ASU's hire of Herm Edwards, and talk about the broken college football playoff process. 

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Arizona Basketball’s Bahamas Bummer

Wildcat Radio's Ronnie Stoffle (@ronnie_stoffle) and Adam Green (@theadamgreen) talk about Arizona's disasterous preformance at the Battle 4 Atlantis where the the Arizona Basketball team lost to North Carolina State, Southern Methodist University, and Purdue. What's wrong with the team? Are distractions playing a major role? And can Allonzo Trier, DeAndre Ayton, and company bounce back? Tune in and find out!

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A Completely Uncalled for 2017 Washington Football Review

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A Completely Uncalled for 2017 Washington Football Review
The King of the North is Dead. And It's a Tragedy
Ryan Ringdahl | November 28, 2017

Overall
The Stark Family never fared well when their leaders ventured south. The same goes for the Washington Huskies who traveled to Tempe and got decapitated by ASU. And, just like the Stark Family after Ed’s mistake, the Huskies have never been the same. For some time, hope lingered. Washington fans noted that the second half of their schedule was strong enough salvage their chance at winning the Pac-12. But Palo Alto is dark and full of terrors.  A loss to Stanford doomed the sky-high hopes of this talented Washington team and, frankly, the hopes of the Pac-12 to field a team in the national playoff.

Quarterback
Jake Browning has chugged along this entire year. He’s the Sam Tarly of the Pac-12 – definitely still alive, definitely productive, and yet he has no shot at receiving any of the glory. Browning is completing 69% of his passes. He has thrown 18 touchdowns, has only tossed 5 picks, and has also been effective enough in the running game to poach 6 rushing touchdowns from Myles Gaskin – just enough to keep his teammate from getting the postseason awards his play merits.

That’s a darn good performance, particularly when considering Washington lost promising Junior Chico McClather to an early injury and John Ross to the NFL (and likely to the best mid-inning contest in Major League Baseball). But, last year Browning threw 43 touchdowns(!!!). That’s a huge drop off from his productivity this year. And it’s not like Washington’s running game has picked up the slack. Granted, in previous years, Browning could have made up a twenty-five-touchdown deficit against Washington State’s defense in one game, but not this year.

Wildcat Radio's Preseason Wild Speculation Grade: A
Wildcat Radio's Midseason Reality Check Grade: A-

Running Back
Myles Gaskin is awesome. He has already accumulated 1,200 yards from scrimmage and 19 touchdowns. The only reason you haven’t heard about Gaskin is because ESPN is too busy mocking Washington’s strength of schedule. You know, the schedule that’s statistically on par with Alabama’s.

Over the course of the season, Washington slowly increased the number of touches Gaskin received. Peterson also started including him in the passing game out of the backfield. Gaskin rewarded his coaching staff by averaging 6 yards per carry and 12.7 yards per reception. Senior Lavon Coleman’s impressive 7.5 yards per carry in 2016 dropped to 4.7 yards per carry but he has proven to be a reliable back #2 back. Looking towards the future, the Huskies look to have found their next star running back in 5’11 freshman Salvon Ahmed, who is averaging 6.5 yards per carry but tends to take full advantage of bad run defenses like ASU, Oregon, and Cal.

Wildcat Radio's Preseason Wild Speculation Grade: A
Wildcat Radio's Midseason Reality Check Grade: A-

Receiver
If you’re only going to throw the ball to one dude, it sure is nice if he has the speed and the moves to return FOUR punts back for a touchdown. FOUR! Dante Pettis is very, very fast. But he’s still not John Ross. As the number one passing option, Pettis has hauled in a respectable 62 receptions for 721 yards and 7 touchdowns.  But in 2016, Pettis hauled in 15 touchdowns on 53 receptions and he was the second best wide receiver. It’s clear that the absence of John Ross (1,150 yards, 17 touchdowns in 2016) has narrowed the field for Dante Pettis. He’s good but he’s not video game good.

Two major injuries brought Washington’s wide receiving corps’ 2016 numbers back to earth. Freshman Hunter Bryant was living up to his hype with 22 catches for 331 and a score before injuring his leg. And Fall camp star, Chico McClatcher, only played three games before he was knocked out for the season.

Defensive end-to-tight end-convert Will Dissly and sophomore Aaron Fuller have tried to step in but it’s clear that some of the promising talent the Huskies brought in need a few more years of development before they can be counted on to compete with the best teams in the Pac-12.

Wildcat Radio's Preseason Wild Speculation Grade: A
Wildcat Radio's Midseason Reality Check Grade: B- (injuries have played a major role)

Offensive Line
Washington’s offensive line has been strong, keeping Browning on his feet while opening holes for the running backs on the roster who need such things. The Huskies have allowed 16 sacks all year placing them third in the conference alongside Stanford and Arizona – two teams that regard dropping back to pass with the same kind of distrust one should use towards cryptocurrency.

Wildcat Radio's Preseason Wild Speculation Grade: B
Wildcat Radio's Midseason Reality Check Grade: A

Defensive Line
Fact. Washington’s 6’5, 340 lb defensive tackle is the real-life Maui from Moana. And, while cartoon Maui sings songs and is voiced by a man who starred in the Tooth Fairy, real-life Maui will fall on your quarterback the same way rickety vending machines kill 3.5 Americans each year.

Washington’s defensive line is the best in the Pac-12 and it isn’t close. The Huskies allow a legitimately stupid 2.63 yards per carry and have only surrendered 8 rushing touchdowns all year. This defensive line dictates what plays their opponents can run and where they run those plays on the field. That’s a tremendous advantage. In addition to Vea, 6’2, 322 lb Greg Gaines and 6’3, 298 lb Jaylen Johnson, you know, the runt of the litter, have done an excellent job occupying opposing linemen to while this excellent Washington linebacking corps wreaks havoc.

Wildcat Radio's Preseason Wild Speculation Grade: A
Wildcat Radio's Midseason Reality Check Grade: A+

Linebacker
There is a reason that Washington has the 3rd best rushing defense in the country. Yes, their defensive line could all star as “wall” in A Midsummer Night’s Dream, but their athletic and nasty linebacking corps takes full advantage of undefended running backs whose offensive linemen are engaged in life-or-death struggles.

This group of athletes is special and it’s deep. Junior, Ben Burr-Kiven has done an excellent job filling the void left by oft-suspended Azeem Victor, filling the stat sheet with 79 tackles, 4 tackles for loss, a sack, three deflected passes, and two forced fumbles. Burr-Kiven’s handiwork allows the Huskies outside linebackers like Tevis Bartlett charge the backfield and disrupt passing routes. Bartlett has 12 tackles for a loss and two interceptions. Senior, Kieshawn Bierria along with underclassmen Benning Potoa’e and Ryan Bowman have all played well and have played with urgency.

Wildcat Radio's Preseason Wild Speculation Grade: A
Wildcat Radio's Midseason Reality Check Grade: A

Secondary
Imagine that you are a Pac-12 offensive coordinator and you are game planning for Washington. You look at their front seven and immediately want no part of them. That’s fair. That’s smart. “Surely.” You say. “We can shift our offensive attack to the passing game.” Nope. No. Not at all. No. The Huskies have the 19th best passing defense in the nation.

Most of Washington’s 2016 starters are now receiving fair market remuneration for their footballing talents yet the Husky secondary didn’t miss a beat. This pass defense has held opponents to just 185 passing yards per game, grabbed 13 picks, and has only allowed 8 passing touchdowns all year. The defensive backs eliminate big plays by tackling like grown adults at every single position. Even with Washington’s stellar linebacking corps, 4 out of their top six tacklers are play in the secondary. Myles Bryant (52 tackles/4 tackles for loss/1 interception/8 pass breakups), Tyler Rapp (55 tackles/3.5 tackles for loss/1 interception/1 forced fumble), and Ezekiel Turner (52 tackles/1 tackle for loss/2 pass breakups), and Jojo McIntosh are all comfortable mixing it up in the box. Late season injuries to ball hawks Byron Murphy and Jordan Miller, who have combined to grab 4 interceptions and 7 pass breakups, slowed down this unit in the final games but, overall, this was a good squad

Wildcat Radio's Preseason Wild Speculation Grade: B
Wildcat Radio's Midseason Reality Check Grade: A

Conclusion
Look at this team. How did they lose two games? BECAUSE YOU NEVER GO SOUTH. Seriously though, it’s a shame that Washington couldn’t run the table. They are clearly the best team in the Pac-12 and deserved to sit on the throne.  Washington’s defense is one of the best in the country and they are led by a quarterback who doesn’t make mistakes. But, as we have seen over 6.5 seasons, life isn’t fair and sometimes a stupid character like Ollie or Todd Graham make a mess of things. Now, a hapless Stanford team that can’t throw a forward pass will be crowned the king of the north and it’s a tragedy. The king is dead. Long live the king.

 

Territorial Cup Recap, Rich Rod’s Future, & Todd Graham Fired

The Wildcat Radio team breaks down the Territorial Cup game between The University of Arizona and Arizona State University. The team dives into the firing of Todd Graham by Ray Anderson at ASU. They also cover the recent coaching hire at UCLA of Chip Kelly.

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Battle 4 Atlantis

Ronnie Stoffle and Adam Green breakdown the University of Arizona Wildcats in the Battle 4 Atlantis including opponents (possible) NC State, SMU, UNI, Purdue and Villanova.

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The Territorial Cup

Wildcat Radio breaks down the Territorial Cup matchup between Arizona Football and ASU. Plus, the guys describe their road trip to Eugene, review the Arizona vs. Oregon game, talk Jim Mora, and breakdown all of the Pac-12 Week 13 games. 

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