Arizona Football

Arizona Wildcats RB Ka’Deem Carey makes big push toward Luppino’s rushing TD mark




In Arizona’s 44-20 win over host Colorado tonight, junior running back Ka’Deem Carey maintained the pace toward Trung Canidate’s school career rushing mark, and he finished well ahead of the performance he needs to catch Art Luppino’s career rushing touchdown mark.

Carey gained 119 yards on 23 carries and ran four times for a score. He has 39 career rushing touchdowns in only 30 games. Luppino scored a school-record 44 rushing touchdowns from 1953-56.

Entering tonight’s game, Carey needed to average 110.8 yards per game and 1.5 touchdowns to reach Canidate and Luppino, respectively, in the regular season (if Arizona wins one more game and becomes bowl eligible and is invited to a bowl, the averages would be slightly reduced).

The Buffaloes loaded the box and “were cracking down on Ka’Deem,” Arizona coach Rich Rodriguez said in the postgame show on 1290-AM, referencing Carey’s modest rushing yardage.

Colorado’s concentration on Carey, who gained a Pac-12-record 366 yards against Colorado last year, opened the door for quarterback B.J. Denker. He finished with 192 yards rushing on 15 carries.

“The way they played us, B.J. had to run our system and he did a good job of running north and south,” Rodriguez told Brian Jeffries, the voice of the Wildcats at 1290-AM.

Carey still managed to run for at least one touchdown in 10 consecutive quarters against the Buffaloes dating to 2011. He had one in each quarter tonight.

Canidate stands at 3,824 rushing yards from 1996-99.

Carey is at 3,274 in basically his second full season. He had only 91 carries for 425 yards as a freshman in 2011. His nation’s-best 1,929 rushing yards last season put him in the position to break Canidate’s record without having to play his senior season if he opts for early entry into the NFL draft.

Carey has 920 rushing yards in 156 attempts (5.9 yards per carry) in six games after missing the season-opener against NAU and the opening quarter against UNLV for disciplinary reasons. A remarkable stat about Carey: He has lost only seven yards rushing the ball in his 156 carries. Against Washington and USC, he was not tackled behind the line. He was tackled behind the line once against Utah and tonight against Colorado.

Here’s a breakdown of where Carey stands now with five regular-season games remaining:

Career rushing yards: Canidate gained a school-record 3,824 yards from 1996-99. Carey now has 3,274. He needs 550 yards to reach Canidate. That means he must average 110 yards per game to reach Canidate. Carey is 107 yards away from reaching Luppino for third on the UA career rushing charts.

He passed tonight Mike Bell (3,163 yards from 2002-05) for the No. 4 spot.

Career rushing touchdowns: Luppino “The Cactus Comet” scored a school-record 44 rushing touchdowns from 1953-56. Carey now has 39. He needs five to reach Luppino. That means he must average one touchdown a game in the next five games.

These averages are only considering Arizona’s regular-season schedule. The Wildcats, who play 12 regular-season games, need at least one more victory to become bowl eligible. They are 5-2 overall and 2-2 in the Pac-12.


[table “” not found /] publisher, writer and editor Javier Morales is a former Arizona Press Club award winner. He also writes articles for Bleacher Report, Lindy’s College Sports and


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