TUCSON, AZ – Wrapping up Fall Camp with an intra-squad scrimmage, we break down the biggest takeaways for Arizona Football.
We are just under two weeks until the official start of the 2022 Arizona Football season, and on Saturday evening, the Wildcats held one last scrimmage before turning all its focus to its week one matchup against San Diego State.
Arizona closed out its fall training camp by hosting an intra-squad scrimmage that resulted in a 29-0 win for the offense.
Taking roughly 100 snaps, overall, the Wildcats looked sharp and competitive despite a few key absences from the scrimmage. And luckily for us, we still have two more weeks for the Cats to get healthy while preparing for the Aztecs.
So with the 2022 Arizona Football season quickly approaching, we look at the major takeaways following their last Scrimmage.
Jayden de Laura has great command of the Offense
Last year, it was clear that Arizona needed some significant upgrades at quarterback, and this off-season Arizona addressed that by bringing in Jayden de Laura from Washington State.
So far, de Laura has slowly acclimated to Tucson, and on Saturday night inside Arizona Stadium, he showed exactly why he will be the day one starter for the Cats.
Overall, he had great command of the offense, making some nice throws and reads, unofficially throwing for 252 yards and a touchdown on 16-21 passing according to Brian J. Pedersen (AZDesertswarm).
When he is out there, he spreads the field well and is always a threat to tuck the football and run. This year, the offense has a different feel and should be a much more competitive group than last season, and that is thanks to Jayden’s poise and command of the offense.
Rayshon “Speedy” Luke is good… I mean, really good!
Coming in at 5-foot-8 and roughly 175 pounds wet, there was at least a small bit of skepticism as to how ready Rayshon Speedy Luke will be this season to contribute.
He was a star athlete at the talented St. John Bosco High School in Southern California, and so far, that has carried over to Tucson as well.
Being one of many in a deep and talented backfield, Speedy will get his opportunities this season, and he further cemented that possibility on Saturday evening. Busting a 70-yard run to the end zone, Speedy is just too good to leave off the field.
He is a talented back with a bright future, and in 2022, I wouldn’t be surprised to see him become one of Arizona’s key focal points on offense and special teams for that matter.
The defense could have a few surprises this year
The Wildcats looked okay all things considered, especially as they unofficially recorded six sacks. However, Arizona did not register a single takeaway on Saturday evening, and tackling still left something to be desired.
On the flip side of that, if we saw anything promising last night, it is that the Wildcats may have a surprise or two on defense this year, the biggest perhaps being Russell Davis II (aka Deuce).
A long and wiry-framed defensive end from Hamilton High School in Chandler, Arizona, Davis came to Tucson needing to pack on the pounds, and so far, he has done just that, adding a reported 23 pounds since arriving in June.
Davis got to the quarterback twice last night, and with continued development and added size, he could see several reps on defense this season.
Everyone is getting healthier at just the right time
Over the past couple of days/weeks, the Wildcats have held out a few players due to injuries. Luckily, by week one, Arizona should be healthier based on what is being reported and according to Jedd Fisch’s comments.
Here were some of the latest updates…
- Wide Receiver Jacob Cowing will return to practice despite missing the past few practices.
- Cornerback Treydan Stukes should be ready to go by the time they play San Diego State.
- Defensive Lineman Tiaoalii “Tia” Savea should also be ready for the season opener.