Arizona Football wrap ups its first Spring under Head Coach Brent Brennan

Jul 29, 2022; Los Angeles, CA, USA; An Arizona Wildcats helmet on display during Pac-12 Media Day at
Jul 29, 2022; Los Angeles, CA, USA; An Arizona Wildcats helmet on display during Pac-12 Media Day at / Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports

As the dust settles on their first Spring Season under the tutelage of Head Coach Brent Brennan, Arizona Football fans head into the offseason with a bit of anticipation and curiosity.

It has been a busy couple of months for Arizona Football, but we have finally wrapped up the first Spring Season under head coach Brent Brennan. 

As we entered Spring Camp, there were still a lot of unanswered questions about the direction of this team and program. But luckily for us, the Cats were armed with a healthy mix of seasoned veterans and promising newcomers, and so far things have looked very favorable, especially as the team continues to define its new identity under coach Brennan.

Brennan, who assumed the role of head coach just a few months ago, has been tasked with the mission of revitalizing Arizona's football program in the post-Jedd Fisch era. And with him, he has brought the vision of disciplined play with an emphasis on player development all while continuing to build on the culture and foundation that has been laid before him.

And throughout the spring practices, you can see the influence of Brennan and his staff as several players have spoken highly of this group.

But with Spring Camp coming to a close, now is an opportune moment to reflect on the team's progress and what lies ahead for the 2024 season. 

The Emergence of Young Players

One of the key highlights of Arizona's Spring Season has been the development and emergence of several young talents, particularly at receiver and tight end. Following the departures/graduation of Tanner McLachlan, Jacob Cowing, and others, it has allowed new guys to step in and step up, especially as Tetairoa McMillan has been hampered by injury. 

This will be vital to Arizona's offensive success this season, as there will be plenty of new faces that will need to replace a lot of offensive production lost from last year.

Naturally, you are going to have more opportunities and those are going to be filled one way or another, so seeing guys like Malachi Riley, Kevin Green, Jr., and Keyan Burnett among others start to get more reps is encouraging to see!

Finding the Right Fits

The emergence of a few players this Spring has allowed coach Brennan and staff to evaluate his group and move some guys around, particularly along the offensive line. 

Gone is Jordan Morgan who leaves a huge hole to fill at left tackle, and despite dealing with some injuries this Spring, Coach Brennan and the Cats have been able to give a few different looks on the offensive line, allowing multiple guys some much-needed reps.

Beyond that, there are still a lot of unanswered questions for Arizona Football on defense. Ephesians Prysock transferred to Washington, Bill Norton left for Texas, and gone are Taylor Upshaw, Jacob Kongaika, and others. 

Defensive Coordinator Duane Akina has been tasked with finding the right fits and defense, and so far you have Treydan Stukes get some reps at cornerback along with Jai-Ayviauynn Celestine, Marquis Groves-Killebrew, Johno Price, and Emmanuel Karnley. 

However, that is just a microcosm of it all. I would expect that we see continued movement with the defense over the next several months, especially as Arizona evaluates its roster.

More changes coming to Arizona Football

As Arizona Football concludes its inaugural Spring under Brennan, this roster and more specifically the depth chart is far from finalized. The transfer portal is still technically open as freshman running back Jordan Washington recently entered, and junior cornerback Tacario Davis remains in the portal. 

So there is a chance that the Wildcats could still see a few players leave, and adversely, look for Arizona to likely still add several players. As it stands, this roster is very far from being complete, so more changes are coming.

What's next for Arizona Football?

For Coach Brennan and his staff, the focus now shifts to the critical task of fine-tuning the team's strategy, identifying areas of improvement, and galvanizing the players for the battles that lie ahead. The lessons learned during the Spring will be invaluable for the Cats as they prepare for the fall season.

In the hearts of Arizona Football fans, hope springs eternal. With a new leader at the helm and a roster brimming with potential, there is a sense of optimism that the Wildcats are poised for another strong run in 2024 so long as this group stays together and remains healthy.

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