Over the next week, Zona Zealots will be previewing the Arizona Wildcats’ 2013 roster in advance of their season opener against NAU on Aug. 30 (For the full list of position previews, click here).
RSr. Derrick Rainey (Houston/Northbrook), RSr. Justin Samuels (Camas, Wash./Camas), RSr. Shane Wilson (Woodland Hills, Calif./Calabasas), RSr. Richard Morrison (Royse City, Texas/Royse City), Sr. Shaquille Richardson (Carson, Calif./Los Alamitos), RJr. Jonathan McKnight (River Ridge, La./John Curtis), RJr. Brendan Murphy (New Hartford, N.Y./Chaparral/Air Force/Glendale C.C.)
Bryan Harper (Transferred to Fresno State)
The Arizona Wildcats possess a lot of experience at the cornerback position and should rebound from a season in which they ranked No. 117 out of 120 teams in passing defense.
The Wildcats’ three main corners will be Shaquille Richardson, a soon-to-be four-year starter with seven career interceptions, Jonathan McKnight, who is finally healthy after suffering a knee injury in 2011, and Derrick Rainey, a fifth-year senior. True freshman Devin Holiday will backup both cornerback positions.
After those four, the position is a little bit thin. Derek Babiash is a four-star recruit and likely will be pressed into action this season. Former wide receiver Richard Morrison might play cornerback, but all indications have shown that he will get the bulk of his playing time on offense. Justin Samuels, Shane Wilson, Brendan Murphy and David Redmon are special teams players at best.
While the cornerback is a position in need of improvement, a lot of their success will depend on the defensive line putting pressure on the quarterback. The Wildcats ranked 20th in the country in passes defended, meaning that the secondary was much better than it looked.
If the corners put up another solid season, the defense will most likely be better than they were last year.
Topics: 2013 Football Position Previews, Arizona Wildcats, Brendan Murphy, David Redmon, Derek Babiash, Derrick Rainey, Devin Holiday, Follow, Index, Jonathan McKnight, Justin Samuels, Rich Rodriguez, Richard Morrison, Shane Wilson, Shaquille Richardson