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5 keys for Cougs vs. Wildcats

ARIZONA IS barely holding it together at this point. Injuries have hammered them worse than any other team in the conference. The Wildcats doN'T want to finish the season winless in conference play though. Much like last week, the Cougars should expect a ton of fight from a struggling team. If they want to win the game, they will have to smother the Wildcats with firepower.

WHEN WSU HAS THE BALL

1. Attack the linebackers

Injuries have left Arizona very thin at their most essential position.  A heavy dose of Morrow, Williams and Wicks will cause them problems, particularly when catching passes on the run.

2. Expect the unexpected.

The Wildcats generally run a base 3-4 defense, but injuries and desperation may force them to try something different.  Falk should expect to see some new looks and lots of blitzes. Arizona has nothing to lose.  As thin as UA is at middle linebacker, a switch to a 4-2-5 would not be a surprise.

WHEN WSU IS ON DEFENSE

3. Attack Brandon Dawkins

Dawkins is bigger, stronger, and faster than any quarterback WSU has faced this season, but he has not been an accurate passer.  WSU needs to contain Dawkins and really tackle him well.

4. Don't give up the big play

The Cougar defense needs to make Dawkins beat them with his arm, and using as many throws as possible.  A few catastrophic mistakes last week gave Oregon State's weak offense way more credit than it deserved.  The Cougs can't give up those big plays again.

5. Commit to being the better team on all three sides of the ball.

Punter/kicker Josh Pollack is nothing spectacular, and injuries have eliminated Arizona's best kick returners.  There is no reason WSU can't have the better special teams units this week.

  • Kickoff: 1:00 p.m./Pac-12 Network
  • Matt Moore Prediction: 41-21 Cougs


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