Tucson CitizenTucson Citizen

Arizona notes: Hall jumps back in with team-high 10 tackles

Adam Hall (left) is restrained by center Kyle Quinn after Hall's unsportsmanlike conduct penalty in the second half. Photo by Jim Z. Rider-US PRESSWIRE.

Junior safety Adam Hall made a successful season debut after recovering from a spring ACL injury. Hall started the game and finished with a team-high 10 tackles in a 37-27 loss at Oregon State.

“He brings more force to our defense,” coach Mike Stoops said on his postgame radio interview on 1290-AM.

“He gives it everything he has. I’m very proud of him. He pushed himself through it. That first time on the field coming off a major knee injury is always traumatic, and I’m really proud of the way he handled it and moved around.

“He’ll continue to get better.”

On the downside, Hall did receive an unsportsmanlike conduct penalty.

* * *

Arizona has fallen behind by double digits in the first half in each of the past five games, all losses. The Cats have allowed at least 27 first-half points in each of the past three games.

* * *

Arizona rallied to score 21 consecutive points after falling behind 30-6. The Cats also scored 21 consecutive points vs. Oregon after falling behind, and they outscored USC 22-7 in one point of the second half.

All too little, too late.

“It’s a 60-minute game. It’s not a 30-minute game,” Stoops said. “The sooner we realize that, the better off we’ll be.”

* * *

Stoops on the kicking game: “I don’t know what to think about our kicking game right now. It totally discombobulates my thinking on everything. We keep giving people chances and opportunities, but at some point it becomes ridiculous. I don’t know what’s wrong with Alex, I really don’t.”

Alex Zendejas missed a 38-yard field goal and failed on another extra-point attempt. He is 6 of 10 on PAT tries this season and has missed 12 for his career.

* * *

Arizona is 1-5 for the first time since the 2005 season.

* * *

Redshirt freshman defensive tackle Kirifi Taula made his first career start and Arizona appeared to use a deeper rotation than usual on the inside, which included junior Chris Merrill in the first half. None of it helped an anemic pass rush.

No Arizona player has a sack in the past five games.

“I thought we improved in some areas defensively,” Stoops said, “but could never get any real pressure on the quarterback.”

Oregon State redshirt freshman Sean Mannion completed 32 of 41 passes for 267 yards, with two touchdowns and two interceptions.

* * *

It’s been a tough season for star wide receiver Juron Criner, not even counting his month-long summer absence from the team for what has been called “personal and family issues.”

Criner, who needed an appendectomy after the season-opener and who suffered a hand injury against Oregon on Sept. 24, didn’t play again after suffering a knee sprain in the first quarter at Oregon State.

“We’ll see,” Stoops said of Criner’s status, adding that “it’s nothing too serious.”

* * *

Recapping (some of) the mistakes:

A missed 38-yard field goal, a missed PAT, a blocked punt for a TD, falling victim to a fake punt that led to three points for Oregon State, a failure to cover a squib kickoff in the final minute of first half that led to another three points for the Beavers, two interceptions and a lost fumble on the opening possession of the second half.

“Turnovers and the kicking game can lead to your demise very easily,” Stoops said. “It doesn’t matter who you play. It can be NAU, it can be USC, it can be Oregon State.”

* * *

Stoops is 2-6 against Oregon State’s Mike Riley, who often knows how to defend the Wildcats. Arizona rushed for just 53 yards Saturday and has averaged a mere 73.4 yards per game on the ground against the Beavers in eight games under Stoops.

* * *

Arizona QB Nick Foles completed 29 of 39 passes for 354 yards, with one touchdown and two interceptions. He passed Tom Tunnicliffe and is second in Arizona history in career passing yards (Foles has 7,908).

Search site | Terms of service