Each Friday, three Citizen sportswriters tackle a question about college football:
Today: Every team says it’s important to get off to a good start, but how important is it? Would you interpret a loss in the first game as a sign of bad things to come?
Until there is a playoff format, every game is important for those in the hunt for an NCAA national championship. It is an absolute must for Arizona not only to look good, but also to beat BYU from a confidence standpoint.
Sure, losing your opener sets the wrong tone. But UA’s biggest game could be next week at LSU. If the Cats play well in that hostile atmosphere, their confidence will be even higher for games against Pac-10 heavies USC and Cal.
Too much emphasis can be placed on the first game, but in UA’s case – in a season in which there seems to be little margin for error in terms of getting to a bowl – a loss could mean bad things. That includes staring at a 1-3 start.