A Closer Look: Arizona vs. Oregon State

It may be getting old, but the Wildcats played a tough game but had too many mistakes to win. Once again Arizona fans are left with a number of positives, but no wins to show for it.

PLAYER OF THE GAME

Oregon State QB Derek Anderson was 17-31 for 249 yards and a pair of touchdown passes. He also had a touchdown run to open the fourth quarter.

WILDCAT PLAYER OF THE GAME

Biren Ealy came off of a two-game suspension and had a phenomenal second half. He had 102 yards on just four catches, all in the second half. Ealy's first grab was a 27-yard touchdown.

PLAY OF THE GAME

On second and goal from the Wildcat one, Oregon State's Dwight Wright attempts to leap over the pile but is drilled by Kirk Johnson and Pat Howard.

TURNING POINT

Arizona scores a touchdown and then forces Oregon State to punt. Wilrey Fontenot fails to signal for a fair catch and is crushed moments after catching the ball. Oregon State recovered and scores a few plays later to take an insurmountable 28-7 lead.

WHAT WE LIKED

*The Wildcats did not quit. They went down 14 in the first quarter but did not fold and actually outplayed the Beavers at the end of the game.

*Biren Ealy made big plays in the second half.

*The Cats put a lot of pressure on Derek Anderson.

*Kovalcheck completed six passes to tight ends.

*Darrell Brooks had 12 tackles, nine solo.

WHAT WE DID NOT LIKE

*Wildcat receivers had at least five drops.

*Kovalcheck faced a lot of pressure.

*The Cats committed four turnovers.

*On fourth and short the Cats ran a slow developing sweep to the outside that lost a yard and gave OSU the ball near midfield.

BAD FASHION

The Cats wore blue jerseys and pants. They have never won with that combination.

RED ZONE WOES

After recovering a fumble inside Oregon State territory the Wildcats drove down to the 11-yard line before stalling. A penalty, a dropped pass and a nasty hit on Kovalcheck ruined a once-promising drive. To make matters worse, Nick Folk's field goal attempt sailed wide right.

INJURIES

Among the players missing the game were Syndric Steptoe, Ryan Eidson, Paul Phillip and Gilbert Harris.

TOUGH GOING

The Beavers' first scoring drive saw the Wildcat defense do a great job putting pressure on Derek Anderson, but the OSU QB avoided the sack and kept making plays. on three occasions the Wildcats had a chance to bring down the senior signal caller, but each time Anderson avoided the sack and completed the pass.

MILESTONE

Mike Bell's 18-yard quarter run pushed him past Vance Johnson for 11th on the Arizona all-time rushing list.

ABOUT TIME

Biren Ealy got out of the doghouse and made an instant impact. His first catch in three weeks was a 27-yard touchdown reception. Ealy took a pass over the middle and shaked and baked his way for the score.

CONNECTIONS

Oregon State LB Trent Bray is the son of former Wildcat linebacker coach Mike Bray, now a defensive backs coach at Colorado.

UH, YEAH

Ealy was recruited as a safety and showed why. He brought down a running back with a big hit. Unfortunately that back was Mike Bell. Ealy was attempting to make a block but hit his own ball carrier as well who had been slowed down by a defender who was trying to tackle him down low.

DROPS

Both teams had been plagued by drops all year. The Wildcats had five drops. The Beavers dropped three passes.

FUN WITH STATS

The Cats led many of the key stats. They had the time of possession edge 32:24 to 27:26. They outgained OSU 331-310 and held the Beavers to just 61 yards rushing.

Arizona was on the negative end in the turnover column. They had four turnovers, while OSU had just one.


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