ASU junior defensive tackle Will Sutton has 10.5 sacks, which rivals Arizona as a team. The Wildcats have tallied 15 sacks. Arizona coach Rich Rodriguez called Sutton a “potential first-round draft pick” during his Monday press conference. NFLDraftScout.com has this assessment of Sutton, a junior who is 6-foot-1 and 268 pounds: “Sutton (because of his size) isn’t exactly the prototype for an interior lineman, but his footwork and quickness often have made him unblockable.” Sutton suffered a right knee injury earlier in the season but appears healthy and ready to go against Arizona.
Arizona senior quarterback Matt Scott continues to be a potential third- or fourth-round pick in the NFL draft, according to NFLDraftScout.com, despite his much-publicized concussion-like syndromes lately. If he enters the NFL, he will continue an unprecedented run of Arizona quarterbacks in the league. The Wall Street Journal ran an article Monday titled “The Great Arizona Quarterback Drought Ends”. Only six BCS teams have less quarterback starts historically in the NFL than Arizona, which has four (Bill Demory with three and Nick Foles with one).
ASU linebacker Brandon Magee, a former classmate of Scott’s at Corona (Calif.) Centennial High School, already is a draft star — in baseball. He was a three-year letterman with the baseball team, was selected in the 23rd round (721st overall) by the Red Sox in the 2012 Major League Baseball First-Year Player Draft. The Arizona Republic had a story this week that mentioned Magee avoided talk about his former Centennial teammate all week. ‘No, no. I won’t even get into that,’’ Magee was quoted as saying by the Arizona Republic. In a preseason interview, Magee spoke highly of Scott. “I respect him,” Magee told the Republc. “He’s a great guy and a great quarterback, too. He’s going to do a lot of things for UofA.” Magee, who missed last season with a knee injury, recorded a season-high 13 tackles in ASU’s 30-29 double-overtime win over Arizona at Arizona Stadium in 2010.
The exploits of sophomore receiver Austin Hill have overshadowed the contribution senior Dan Buckner has made to the Wildcats. Steve Rivera of FoxSportsArizona.com recently wrote an article about how Rich Rodriguez and Buckner do not believe he is overlooked by opponents. “I don’t feel overshadowed by Hill at all,” Buckner told Rivera. “I was talking the other day and (saying) that I don’t think RichRod has had so much production at wideout. Austin is my partner in crime. When we are lined up on the same side, it makes it that much easier. I don’t think I would have had as much success without Austin and vice versa.” Hill has 1,119 yards receiving with 68 catches while Buckner has 730 with 58 catches. The Wildcats have never had two receivers with more than 1,000 yards receiving in the same season. With two games remaining — ASU and a likely bowl game — the possibility exists that Buckner can get the 270 yards to make it happen.
ASU senior running back Cameron Marshall ranks second in the career rushing touchdown list in ASU history with 35, which trails Woody Green’s 43 achieved from 1971-73. Marshall’s rushing yardage has decreased this year to 503 yards on 118 carries from last year when he gained 1,050 yards on 230 carries. He has not gained more than 100 yards in a game this season. ASU coach Todd Graham’s offense is predicated more on quarterback Taylor Kelly rolling out of the pocket and either throwing on the run or tucking the ball and running himself (a huge departure from Brock Osweiler last season). Kelly has 393 yards on 121 carries this season.
THIS, THAT AND THE OTHER THING:
— Anthony Gimino’s game blog and pregame notes at TucsonCitizen.com
— Gimino writes an amusing story about Trung Canidate’s reaction to Ka’Deem Carey breaking his school rushing record in a game against Colorado two weeks ago.
— Steve Rivera of FoxSportsArizona.com writes that ASU’s defense will present a challenge for Arizona to keep the Territorial Cup in Tucson
— With Washington State’s upset win over Washington 31-28 in overtime earlier today, that strengthens Arizona’s chance of a higher-tiered bowl in the Pac-12 pecking order. Washington’s loss was to the weakest team in the conference. The Huskies had won four consecutive games. Here is a look at what might happen to conference teams in the bowls but do not hold me to this;
PROJECTED PAC-12 BOWL PICTURE
* – The Rose Bowl can take an at-large BCS team as long as it has nine wins and is in the top 14 of the BCS standings.
Site publisher, writer and editor Javier Morales is a former Arizona Press Club award winner