Solomon's second half performance may get the attention, but he still made several mistakes in the first half, including both of his interceptions. The freshman made some bad reads and struggled to move the offense. It will be something that should be scrutinized by the coaches in the bye week.
Game Notes: Arizona vs California
Arizona needed a Hail Mary to win the game on Saturday night, but came away with a 49-45 victory over California in a wild finish. Here is a closer look at what happened:
Anu Solomon struggled for the first half of the game, but came up big when it was needed. The freshman set school records in passing yards (520), passing completions (47), passing attempts (73), and individual plays (89). Solomon was also Arizona's leading rusher on the night, collecting 46 yards on sixteen carries.
Freshman running back Nick Wilson was unable to find any big holes on the night, finishing with just 33 yards on 11 carries. He left the game in the third quarter with an apparent injury. Terris Jones-Grigsby filled in for him and did well, carrying the ball five times for 28 yards and a big touchdown.
Arizona's offense was carried most of the night by Cayleb Jones. The sophomore continued to show why he is the Wildcats' best receiver as he caught 13 passes for 186 yards and three touchdowns. It was a magical performance for Jones, although he could have had more yards if not for an offensive pass interference call against him in the last minute of the game.
Jared Goff was nearly lights out for the Golden Bears. The sophomore quarterback was slinging the football all over the field, finishing with 380 yards while completing 18 of his 30 attempts. It wasn't all good for Goff, as he only completed 5 of 13 passes for 86 yards after halftime, while throwing a game-changing interception.
The 22-point deficit that Arizona faced at halftime marks the largest comeback victory for the Wildcats in school history. The previous largest deficit for Arizona was two years ago when the Wildcats came back from being down 21 points to beat Nevada in the New Mexico Bowl.
Arizona's comeback was fueled by the lone California turnover in the second half. A low pass from Goff was tipped up into the air. It was caught by Tra'Mayne Bondurant for an interception, turning the tide of the game.
Arizona's defense really dug in when it needed to. In the first half, California was 4-for-7 on third down. In the second half, the Wildcats held the Golden Bears to just two third down conversions in seven attempts.
The Wildcats were saved on the last second 48-yard Hail Mary to Austin Hill. It was his eighth catch of the game and put him at 127 yards for the night. More importantly, it was his second touchdown and gave the Wildcats their first lead of the night.
Arizona's furious comeback really showed the speed and efficiency of the offense. The Wildcats trailed 45-30 when Khalfani Muhammad rumbled to the end zone for a touchdown. Arizona went on to score 19 straight points in order to win the game.
After California torched Arizona for 376 yards in the first half, the Wildcats made adjustments in the second half and shut down the Golden Bears. California managed just 197 yards in the second half. The defensive effort was a big factor in the comeback for the Wildcats.
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