Arizona coach Rich Rodriguez hasn’t had much good to say about his quarterbacks or his offense through the first week of camp.
“I’m concerned with everything on offense. Everything,” an irritated Rodriguez told reporters after the team’s night practice at Fort Huachuca on Saturday night. “Know what I’m concerned about with offense? Everything.”
OK. So, everything.
Put the quarterbacks at the top of the list. There have been no standouts among the six eligible quarterbacks, and it hasn’t helped that junior college transfer Jesse Scroggins has missed about half of camp, including Saturday, because of concussion problems.
“Whoever is out there is supposed to execute,” Rodriguez said. “That ain’t happening either.”
Senior quarterback B.J. Denker, who had a case for No. 1 heading into camp, hasn’t separated himself from the field. Anu Solomon … well, he’s a freshman. Rodriguez said last week that one of the guys you can’t rule out of the mix is Louisiana Tech walk-on transfer Nick Isham, perhaps generously listed at 6-0.
A year after his first Wildcats team set a school record for total offense (526.15 yards per game), Rodriguez is looking for firepower in a post-Matt Scott world. There’s All-American running back Ka’Deem Carey (limited in contract drills to keep him healthy), but UA doesn’t have an obvious replacement for receiver Austin Hill, who is rehabbing a torn ACL that almost certainly will keep him out all season.
And then there’s the offensive line.
“I guarantee you I can get 10 off the post who can block better than we’re blocking,” Rodriguez said of the soldiers at Fort Huachuca. “I can do that tomorrow. Maybe tonight.”
The Cats wrapped up practice at the Army post on Saturday night and are scheduled to resume camp on campus Monday morning. UA’s Meet the Team event will be held Saturday at Arizona Stadium, with a scrimmage at 6 p.m., followed by an autograph session on the field.
By that time, RichRod will be hoping to see not only better execution but a higher level of effort.
“Our guys have got to be more competitive,” he said.
“It’s as simple as that. I told them that. You can call me a mean guy or whatever, but I would rather be called that than a loser. And our players have got to be the same way. They have got to be competitive. I don’t care what it is. You better be competitive or you’re not going to last in this program.
“End of story.”