November 2, 2007

Game Ten Preview: Arizona vs. UCLA

This week Arizona is going up against the only team in the conference that is as unpredictable as itself. All season long both the UA and UCLA have played down to the competition but something has to give on Saturday at Arizona Stadium, when two teams meet during the Wildcats' Homecoming.

UCLA's strength is certainly its power running game. The leading running back Kahlil Bell is hurt, but 5-foot-10, 210-pound Chris Markey is plenty capable of carrying the load. Stopping the Bruins running attack is certainly the biggest key for a Wildcat victory.

Taking away the Bruins strength will be very difficult considering the players they have up front on the offensive line. Guard Shannon Tevaga leads a group of linemen who have plenty of size, speed and experience.

Arizona's run stoppers will have to be better than the Bruins at playing smash mouth football. If Arizona's defensive line can win the line of scrimmage by preventing the Bruins from getting any push, then the Wildcats will be in a great position to win the game.

UCLA's defense has out-performed its offense thus far this season. The Bruins' rank of 17th nationally at stopping the run should make Nicolas Grigsby's day pretty difficult. Instead of trying to beat the Bruins' strength, the Wildcats will try to keep the defense honest with screens and swing passes.

UCLA's pass defense is led by cornerback Trey Brown. He is very talented and should have the assignment of picking up Arizona's leading receiver Mike Thomas. However, Thomas is riding a streak of confidence after scoring three touchdowns last week against Washington.

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