Heading into the game, the Arizona Wildcats did not have much of a chance against the Stanford Cardinal. As we predicted in our preview, the 'Cats hung around for the first half, but in the end, Andrew Luck and the offensive attack from the Cardinal would be too much for UA.
Nick Foles actually had a solid game on Saturday evening, even if his teammates did not do too much to help the cause. The senior completed 24 of 33 passes for 239 yards and a touchdown. Foles did not commit a turnover and kept his team in the game in the first half. What more can be asked of him?
Running Backs & Wide Receivers: B
After a stagnant first quarter of play, Arizona's running backs, Keola Antolin and Ka'Deem Carey, finally had some blocking up front and were able to come away with a few big rushes. The two combined for 87 yards on just 15 carries and they did it against a blitz-happy Stanford defense.
As for the receiving unit, Juron Criner was solid-yet-unspectactular in his return from an appendectomy. Dan Bucker made back-to-back grabs along the sideline as the team tried to mount a drive before the half and David Roberts had five big catches for 72 yards. No one was able to come away with a big play -- well, Criner did, but a replay review showed his elbow was down -- but they did the most with what Foles gave them.
Offensive Line: F
It was more of the same for the Wildcats and their offensive line; blown blocking coverages, a complete lack of open holes for the running backs to hit, and an inability to get out and block for the skill players. A sign of progress could be seen in a lack of penalties, but honestly, it's tough to see Arizona scoring too many points with this bad of an offensive line.
Defensive Line: F
If Andrew Luck brought any homework with him on the trip, he probably could have done it while standing in the pocket. UA's defensive line struggled to even get a finger on the quarterback and Stepfan Taylor continually gashed the huge holes opened up for 151 yards.
Not only did the linebackers also struggle to get any pressure on Luck, but they were continually burnt by the Stanford tight ends down the field. Injuries have slowed this unit down, but they came up short once again on Saturday evening, just as they did in the Oklahoma State game.
To be fair, the secondary played pretty well in the first half. Unfortunately for UA, the unit completely fell apart in the second half and was picked apart by Andrew Luck. The quarterback threw for 325 yards and two touchdowns and seemingly had a receiver wide open down the field on every play in the second half. Trevin Wade continued to play well and Shaquille Richardson had a few nice pass breakups, but all-in-all, it was a sub-par performance.
Special Teams: F
Honestly, do we expect anything different at this point? Two huge field goals were missed in the second quarter by Jaime Salazar that would have tied the game and an imbecilic offside penalty on fourth down basically ended the game for the 'Cats. If this program wants to take the next step, the horrendous special teams play has to end.