"We obviously made a lot of progress," Denker said. "I was happy with the performance from the offensive unit, definitely in the second half. Going through film was a little frustrating watching the lack of execution in the first half. If it would have been like the second half I would have been a lot happier after the game."
Head coach Rich Rodriguez has been critical of the fact that Arizona did not come out against USC with the necessary intensity and Denker was hard-pressed to disagree.
"I don't know if we came out flat, but you can definitely see on the film if we would have done a couple things, if I would have a different read here or there, especially on the drive where we missed the field goal, there were probably two plays where we could have gotten in the end zone," he said.
"Then, the one to Nate (Phillips) where I threw it a little too high, if I would have put it on him, that's seven points instead of three. Going through film, it was very frustrating to see the points we left on the field."
Denker believes that he and the rest of the offense are responsible for making sure that the Wildcats have the necessary mindset going into the next game.
"I think it starts with me and on the offensive side of the ball on Tuesday," he said. "Tuesday is what we call our work day. We are full pads, full speed, and I feel that is how the coaches judge how well our week of practice will go. Sometimes we come out flat on a Tuesday, then Wednesday Coach Rod gets in our ear and gets on us and says ‘Hey that's not how we play here or practice here at Arizona.'
"Everyone has a different way of preparing for a game. Some guys are hooting and hollering and some guys are more reserved. I think it is how your first drive on offense and your first drive on defense set the tone and this weekend on offense, we didn't have a very good drive. I think that might have set the tone for our first half."
Of course, setting that tempo and having success on offense is made a lot easier by having Ka'Deem Carey.
"Watching film, it is sometimes that gray area; do I throw the football or do I hand it off,?" Denker said. "Coach says ‘Sometimes Ka'Deem will just make you right, when in doubt just give it to 25.' He helps me as a quarterback tremendously.
"Sometimes when it's third and five I ask ‘Do I throw the ball, what are they doing, let's give it to 25 and he will get us a first down.' I don't think people realize how amazing he is just at breaking tackles. He is going to get two or three yards a carry at least."