People say that Tucson is a basketball town. This is usually the case but last week, Arizona Football was the headliner. It was Rivalry week in the desert; Arizona vs ASU aka the Territorial Cup aka the most important game of the year. A sellout crowd of over 51,000 energetic fans wearing red piled into Arizona Stadium on Friday night. The atmosphere was electric, the game was exciting but the outcome was ugly and depressing. Much like two years ago, the Sun Devils rallied in the fourth and capitalized on Wildcat turnovers to win the game, 41-34.
There were bright spots in the loss; the brightest being Ka’Deem Carey. The Wildcats stud running back continued his Heisman-worthy season and clinched my Stamp of Approval for the game. Carey put this team on his back and put them in a position to win this game. He finished with 25 carries for 172 yards and touchdown. Did I mention that this stat line was with limited action due to being banged up before and during the game. Simply put, the guy is a beast and I am not the only one who thinks so. Carey was just named to the Pac-12’s all-conference team. He is the first UA running back to receive first-team all-conference honors since Clarence Farmer in 2001. A loss to ASU is hard to swallow but his performance throughout the season make it easy to forget!
A nice win by Arizona men’s basketball team went under the radar last week. The Cats routed Long Beach State on Monday night, a game that was supposed to be their toughest challenge of the early season. The Cats were in control of this one from the opening tip and finished with a 94-72 victory at McKale Center.
My Stamp of Approval for this one goes to freshman Brandon Ashley who earned his first start of the season. I love when guys recognize an opportunity and jump on it and that’s exactly what Ashley did in this game. He played with confidence, attacking early and often and finished with a very impressive double-double. He scored the Wildcats first seven points and made 8 of 9 free throws. He was also 6 of 6 from the field and had two blocks. Ashley is working hard and it is paying off and there is nothing better than to watch that progression. I was not the only one who was impressed with Ashley on Monday.
“You get 20 points and 10 rebounds in 24 minutes, he was the best player on the court tonight,” said head coach Sean Miller on Ashley’s performance.