Arizona (0-1) will look to get back on track against Grambling State (1-0) on Saturday after dropping the season opener to BYU.
The Tigers are coming off a record setting performance against Virginia Lynchburg. Grambling State hung a school record 72 points in the victory. The previous record of 70 points was broken during an opening weekend whiteout.
Grambling State's offense is led by junior transfer and former Ole Miss quarterback Devante Kincade. The dual-threat signal caller transferred into the program to be closer to family and has immediately found success. Taking over the starter role, Kincade accounted for four of the Tigers' touchdowns in the opener.
He was able to move the ball on the ground and through the air. Kincade passed for 109 yards and two scores while completing 10 of 18 passes. The quarterback also showed his mobility, rushing four times for 139 yards and two touchdowns, including a 69-yard keeper.
However, Kincade struggled with the same thing he did at Ole Miss, which is accuracy, as he threw three interceptions in the win.
Although Kincade has taken all of the first team reps in fall camp and was the starter for the opener, the GSU coaching staff has said that he will share snaps with Trevon Cherry.
The sophomore took over for Kincade in the opener after the game was out of reach and played admirably. Cherry completed 11 of 15 passes for 140 yards and two scores, showing himself to be a larger passing threat than his counterpart.
The Tigers also have a two-headed monster in the backfield as well with Martez Carter and Jestin Kelly splitting carries at running back. Kelly was mostly held in check, rushing just nine times for 44 yards, and Carter carried the ball three times for 78 yards. Neither running back scored on the ground.
Carter is also used as a multi-tool player and found his worth in the opener on special teams. The junior returned a punt 57 yards for a score and a kickoff 89 yards for a touchdown. He also caught a pass out of the backfield for four yards.
On the receiving end of things, multiple players had big games for the Tigers. Montrel Meander, a transfer from Texas led GSU with 49 yards on four catches. True freshman Quintin Guice was not far behind, grabbing four balls for 47 yards.
Although he was suspended for the first game of the season, Chad Williams is easily the Tigers' best receiver. The senior led Grambling State is multiple categories, including catches (62), receiving yards (1,012) and receiving touchdowns (10). He will make his season debut against Arizona.
Grambling State has many weapons and a very high-powered offense. The Tigers ranked second in the Southwestern Athletic Conference with 41.3 points per game. While they have already shown plenty of offense in their one game this season, it is yet to be known how well the offense will fare against the Wildcats' new look on defense.
Players to Watch:
#1, Davante Kincade: The Ole Miss transfer was looking for a rebirth at Grambling State and he got it. Kincade will be a big test for Arizona's new defense that did well in just about everything except containing the quarterback against BYU. Kincade can make plays on his feet and isn't afraid to get a first down himself.
#10, WR Chad Williams: The senior was forced to sit out the first game of the season and is ready to get back on the field. Williams is a dangerous receiver and can make big plays, but the question is whether he will come out fired up or will come out with a layer of rust from the offseason.
#4, RB Martez Carter: He is listed as a running back, but Carter should be watched for his work on special teams. Already with two kicks returned for touchdowns this season the shifty and speedy back could exploit some of the holes in Arizona's special teams unit.
Keys to the Game:
Contain the Quarterback - Kincade is going to run the ball and he is going to do it often. Arizona will need to be ready for it. If the Wildcats can shut down Kincade, the rest of the offense will be hampered as well.
Create Turnovers - With all the talk about how aggressive the defense was going to be in the offseason, Arizona failed to force any turnovers against BYU. Kincade threw three interceptions in the opener so there is no excuse for the Wildcats to fail to take the ball away a few times in the game.