Arizona Football

Arizona Wildcats make much needed strides with win at Nevada


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Arizona is counting on an impressive win over in-state Big Sky rival NAU next week at Arizona Stadium to enter the Pac-12 season in the right frame of mind at 3-0.

The 20th-ranked Wildcats took the difficult, necessary step to keep that momentum going with a 44-20 victory at Nevada’s Mackay Stadium on Saturday night. The all-important Pac-12 opener against UCLA is in only two weeks at Arizona Stadium.

The injury bug continued to hit the middle linebacker position as Scooby Wright’s replacement, Haden Gregory went down with a right knee injury. Gregory’s backup, redshirt freshman Tre Tyler, was hobbled by an ankle injury.

Derrick Turituri was shifted from outside linebacker to middle linebacker after Tyler’s injury. He even hobbled off after one sequence. And don’t forget Cody Ippolito could have filled in but he was lost to a season-ending knee injury in the preseason.

The Wildcats had 25 different players make a tackle in the game with none of them recording more than five. Six players had five tackles, including safety Will Parks, who had two tackles for lost yardage and a forced fumble.

“We played a whole bunch of dudes,” Arizona coach Rich Rodriguez said. “I didn’t know who was playing. We had a lot of guys come in.”

The Wildcats pulled away because of Nick Wilson’s 194 yards on 21 carries and mistake-free play on the road. They were penalized only three times for 30 yards and lost the ball once on a questionable fumble by Wilson, who appeared to lose the ball after landing on the ground.

“We were able to run it when they knew we were going to run it, which was key,” Rodriguez said.

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