Wildcats are closer to being Mackovic's team

John Mackovic has been head coach at Arizona for a little over a year, but already this is starting to resemble "his" team. The new Arizona headman has already secured the bulk of his next recruiting class, meaning that a good portion of his team will be his recruits and not those of former coach Dick Tomey.

The departure of quarterbacks John Rattay and Cliff Watkins means that of the four quarterbacks Arizona knows they will have on the roster next season, three will be "Mackovic guys". Other departures, which are a normal occurrence in college football, will further make the roster tilt in the favor of Mackovic's hand picked players.

This is not a criticism of Tomey's recruits, it is simply a matter of Mackovic being able to go out, pursue and land players that best fit his style. Not for one minute would Mackovic trade Clarence Farmer, Bobby Wade or Lance Briggs. In fact the bulk of next year's starters will be Tomey recruits, but the days until Mackovic's player make up the roster is getting closer and closer. After that there are no excuses for anybody. If Mackovic's teams continue down the same path as Tomey's teams, then we will learn that Arizona is truly a second-tier football school.

But, if Mackovic does get to the Rose Bowl as he predicted, then the move to bring him in was justified. If he can become the first coach to get the Cats into the Rose Bowl, then it will show that Arizona can play with the big boys.

By my count, and this is unofficial because other players may have left school that have not been reported, but by my count there are still 45 Dick Tomey recruited players on the squad. By that same count including walk-ons and mid season junior college transfers Mackovic will have 28 of his players in spring ball. That number will swell to 53 when the 25 new recruits arrive in August.

That's right, when the Cats convene their August practice Mackovic recruited players should outnumber the Tomey recruited players. This team is getting closer to becoming Mackovic's team and the future of Arizona football will start getting a lot clearer.

A look at the breakdown (Mackovic players in bold):

Seniors (15)

J. Bailey, L. Briigs, M. Hairgrove, A. Higginbotham, J. Hugo, J. Johnson, S. Keel, S. McKee, R. Ramsey, D. Saffranek, Y. Thompson, J. Vorsheck, B. Wade, R. Wells, J. Wilk, J. Worcester, M. LaCoss.

Juniors (22)

C. Farmer, A. Fulcher, B. Gill, C. Hardt, D. Hinton, P. Holekeituia, M. Jolivette, M. Lamatsch, J. Levassuer, G. Love, J. Martinez, M. Molina, R. Montijo, L. Nunez, D. Perry, R. Peru, B. Phillips, L. Relford, R. Sampay, J. Siofele, J. Stewart, A. Thurman, T. Voll.

Sophomores (14):

F. Avegalio, T. Cox, B. DalMolin, S. Flemming, K. Fraser, C. Harris, P. Howard, J. Jochum, C. Johnson, K. Johnson, A. Nuessle, C. Williams, R. Williams, T. Wingate.

Redshirt Freshmen (14):

M. Bell, B. Brittain, D. Brooks, N. Costa, B. Hopkins, L. Kafentzis, M. Lam, P. Limon, M. Page, G. Scott, A. Singfield, T. Stevens, I. Watts.

2001 Walk-ons (8):

J. Abramo, C. Bryan, J. Gran, D. Green, N. McCalmont, O. Ortiz, K. Snell, M. Weigand.

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