Insider Predictions: UA/NAU

The Lumberjacks come to Tucson this Saturday with axes in hand. After Michigan's loss to Appalachian State, anything's possible as further evidenced by Cincinnati's blowout victory over Oregon State Thursday night. Arizona should win Saturday but the question is can they win impressively? Here's what the Insiders think.



The Wildcats have something to prove, to themselves and their fan base. Expect the Cats coming out trying to light up the scoreboard. The question is, can they? They need to show the fans, and themselves, that the new spread offense can work. Even if it is against an inferior opponent.  I have a feeling this game will be an open audition for a number of players. Expect Chris Jennings, Xavier Smith and Nic Grigsby to all get serious touches. Also expect the offense to really go to the young receivers to see if there are playmakers.  The Lumberjacks would love to be the next Appalachian State, but it won't happen. Expect them to hang around early before the Wildcats defense becomes too much.


- Brad Allis, Editor-in-Chief

Final Score:  UA 38  NAU 13



After watching Arizona struggle against BYU on offense, I'm officially taking an "I'll believe it when I see it" approach to the ‘Cats lighting up the scoreboard.  I didn't think they'd put up 50 on the Cougars, but I did expect 20-28 points from the ‘Cats.  After watching Cal post 45 on a legit SEC defense, let's hope that an improved Arizona offense comes sooner than later – and when I mean sooner I mean like NOW.    As my friend Scott says, 21-17 isn't going to win games in the explosive Pac-10 this season.  The Lumberjacks employ an effective offensive scheme that's a lot like Oregon's when Dixon is under center.  Last season, Arizona forced Oregon into six turnovers while holding them scoreless in the second half.  I expect Arizona to be a bit more aggressive on defense to force NAU's QB to make quicker decisions then he's accustomed to.  The end result will hopefully be more three and outs, a few more turnovers and much better field position than what the ‘Cats had in Provo.  This should help an offense that needs all the help they can get.

- Gary Randazzo, Basketball Editor

Final Score:  29  NAU 13



The best part about previewing week 2 in AZ football 2007?  We don't play BYU this week.  The worst part?  I still am trying (desperately) to recover from that fiasco that was Saturday September 2, 2007.  Anyway, my glasses are still Cardinal and Navy, so here goes nothing.  Offense:  We're playing football (at least that's what they tell me) and not chopping down trees.  So I'm giving the edge to my Wildcats.  Besides, we've got to be better than last week.  Honest, and I mean it this time, we just got to play better.  In all seriousness, Tui looked good when he wasn't audibling (a little duct tape over the mouth guard will fix that).  I am sure Stoops and Sonny have read each and every email and internet post by us couch QB's and will start playing Gronk, Mitchell, Grigsby and following all of the other 425 million suggestions they have received.  Defense:  The Lumberjacks have a pretty good offense, but they won't be able to keep the UA D on the field for 10 minutes a quarter like BYU did.  So, once again I'm giving the edge to Arizona.  X-Factor:  Take your pick - home opener and the boys want to really shine for the 75 fans expected to be in attendance.  Cason, Louis and the boys are pissed about giving up 20 to BYU.  Plenty of locker room fodder supplied by our own fans (some deserved, some not).  Final Prediction:  Well I promised 2 years ago I was going to predict AZ 31 and our Opponent 3 until I got it right.  (I'm not really good at this in case anyone hasn't noticed.)  We have all seen how well this theory has gone
so I'm going to break the jinx and say AZ 69 NAU 0.


- Blake Phillips, UA Homer

Final Score:  UA 69  NAU 0 



The Arizona Wildcats started their 2007 season with a WTF? rather than with the bang everyone wanted.  Now that the first pathetic game is out of the way the Cats have a few things they must do to get their own confidence back as well as gain some modicum of confidence back from the fans.  First the Cats MUST hang at least 40 points on NAU Saturday.  With the offense being truly offensive in week one they must rebound and do something they have yet to do under a Mike Stoops team...score 30 points against a 1-AA team.  Willie Tuitama and the boys absolutely need to rebound and show that the BYU game was a fluke.  The running game needs to show something and the passing game needs to show more consistency.  Defensively the Cats need to slow down what looks like a very talented and fast version of the spread offense.  NAU sports the QB read offense with a very athletic and mobile quarterback with a decent arm.  The defense needs to hold the NAU offense to under 20 points and more importantly they need to show they can stop the run and pressure the opposing quarterback.  I think the Cats will come through on most of the must sees this week.  My final score, Arizona 52, NAU 13.


- Chris Bonney, Football Editor

Final Score:  UA 52  NAU 13



Wow what a total let down of the hype.  After last week's loss to BYU most wanted to go in a totally new direction.  People wanted to throw certain "skill" players under the bus.  Harsh words were shared.  I for one was one that was totally disappointed with the loss.  However, the sun will rise in the morning and with it brings a new opportunity for redemption.  I will continue to believe we are capable of winning 8 games this year and the winning streak will start this week.  Promise will be shown by our young receivers and holes will be opened by our experienced offensive line and our running backs will run.  Young William will have a game of confidence building that will propel him to greatness.   Our defense will flex its muscle on the man boys of the North.  I look for picks from the All American and hard hitting from our linebackers.  I expect to see hard tackling to prove a point to the rest of the league that U of A is a Pac 10 Football Team.  If that does not happen then it will be a long year my friends.  However back to my prediction:  U of A football will "right the ship" this week and send the NAU team home unlike Appalachian State.....whipped.  The Zona Zoo has got to play its part as well.  I want to hear you fanatics from here in William's home town.  BEAR DOWN!!


- Tony Melendez, Contributor

Final Score:  UA 45-10

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