UA vs. SCSU: Positives and Negatives

There was plenty of good and some room for improvement after Arizona's win on Saturday. Read on for a look at the positives and negatives.

Arizona played a strong game on Saturday against a squad it should not have had any trouble with. While virtually every game has both positives and negatives that can be extracted from it, it's difficult to nitpick UA's effort after the dominating performance it put forth.

The balanced attack was led by quarterback Matt Scott, once again, but also saw numerous players throughout the roster make significant impacts throughout the entire 60 minutes of football. With everyone doing their part, there was seemingly nothing but encouraging signs displayed by Arizona in all four quarters of play.


Focus: Arizona took care of the task at hand by dismantling a South Carolina State squad that looked completely outmatched from the opening kickoff. The Wildcats have a big contest next week at Oregon and could have easily looked past their opponents. Instead, UA focused on its current opponent and put the game out of reach early.

Matt Scott: It was business as usual for the Wildcats' senior quarterback. Scott concluded the evening by producing nearly 350 yards of total offense and five touchdowns in three quarters of play. Scott's athleticism gave him an advantage against SCSU's front-seven, which was a step too slow as a unit to make Scott struggle.

Running game: 323 yards rushing and four touchdowns is the strongest team performance by Arizona through three games. Not one individual surpassed 100 yards on the ground, but five different players each gained over 40 yards and, as a team, Arizona put together on average of 5.8 yards per carry.

Receivers: Much like the rushing attack, the UA receiving corps put forth a strong, balanced performance. A dozen targets caught passes, giving Scott and backup quarterback B.J. Denker plenty of reliable options throughout the evening.

Preparation: There was a little concern regarding whether or not Arizona would take its opponent seriously with such an important game looming next week to open the conference schedule. The coaching staff got its team prepared and it showed for all four quarters.

Determination: Arizona never let up even though the game was all but over half-way through the second quarter. The Wildcats kept playing their game and prevented SCSU from getting any sort of momentum going on either side of the ball.

Jonathan McKnight: It's been a strong start to the 2012 season for McKnight, who missed all of last year with an ACL tear. The sophomore picked off his second pass in as many games and continues to be the best cornerback on the roster.

Overall defense: UA's defense didn't receive the most difficult test, but still managed to ace it impressively. The Wildcats allowed the Bulldogs to gain an average of just 2.9 yards per play.

Room for Improvement

Richard Morrison: Morrison did catch a touchdown pass on the first drive and put together solid numbers, but he coughed up another fumble and muffed another punt. Morrison has proven to be a valuable asset to the UA offense, but his mistakes are becoming a bit too consistent this early in the season.

Pass rush: Once again, the Wildcats struggled getting to the quarterback. In all fairness, defensive coordinator Jeff Casteel wasn't calling for an aggressive attack against South Carolina State's offense, but collecting just one sack against a team with a very suspect offensive line is something to be cautious of going forward.

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