Arizona football: Sometimes, stats do lieby Anthony Gimino on Dec. 30, 2010, under Sports
The Arizona Wildcats outgained Oklahoma State 370-312 in the Alamo Bowl and had possession of the ball for 37 minutes, 31 seconds.
And they still lost 36-10 on Thursday night in the Alamodome in San Antonio.
It was a similar story throughout Arizona’s five-game losing streak to end the season.
In that stretch of losses, Arizona was out-gained by only 51 yards while being outscored by 74 points.
That’s hard to do.
It’s been a series of costly turnovers, red-zone failures, special teams misadventures, penalties at the worst possible times and just a general collective failure to make plays in critical situations.
While the Wildcats weren’t a bad team, they sure spent a lot of time playing like one.
Now, the Wildcats might not have beaten Oregon, Stanford and Oklahoma State even if they had played much cleaner games, but those results could have been a lot closer. And Arizona completely kicked away the season with goof-filled home losses to USC and Arizona State.
Win those games, and Arizona finishes with a 9-4 record that most everyone could live with.
Instead, it’s 7-6 and time for a long offseason filled with doubts and questions and a likely tough sell for season tickets.
“Obviously, we’re not there yet,” coach Mike Stoops said in his postgame press conference.
“There’s still a lot of room for improvement in a lot of different areas. We have to re-evaluate all aspects of our program: coaching, philosophy, personnel. That’s obviously the most important part. …
“It’s disappointing we didn’t play better in back to back bowl games. We lost to two really good football teams. There are no excuses. They played better than we did. They were a better team than we were tonight. It’s disappointing. I just know we’re better than the way we’ve played here of late. For whatever reason, we didn’t finish very strong.”