Stoops ready to kick off his fourth season in Arizona

Stoops ready to kick off his fourth season in Arizona



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TUCSON, Ariz. (AP) -- The Arizona Wildcats have spent months talking about their new offense.

Now they're ready to see what it can do in its debut against Brigham Young on Saturday in Provo, Utah.

"We are out to show the world that we are going to be a passing offense," Arizona receiver Terrell Turner said Monday at a campus news conference.

The Wildcats have talked about switching from a ground-oriented attack to a passing spread since hiring a new offensive coordinator, Sonny Dykes, at the end of last season. A change was needed after Arizona averaged 16.5 points per game last year and ranked 115th nationally in total offense with 253 yards per game.

Dykes brings a reputation for innovation and offensive fireworks from his last stop, at Texas Tech. The Wildcats are expected to look like the high-scoring Red Raiders, although Dykes has warned that it will take time for the Wildcats to adjust to the scheme.

"There are a lot of different ways we can go with this offense," Arizona coach Mike Stoops said. "What we are going to emphasize and how we are going to attack them, I don't know if anybody knows."

Arizona's top priority is keeping quarterback Willie Tuitama healthy after he missed nearly half of the 2006 season with concussion-related symptoms. Tuitama will be throwing to a receiving unit that is dominated by freshmen and sophomores.

"I think (Tuitama) is very comfortable," Stoops said. "I think he likes it, the simplicity of it. The ability to call plays is a lot simpler. That is a big thing for a quarterback."

The Cougars understand the spread attack, having employed a similar scheme for the past couple of seasons. That could be a big advantage for BYU.

But Arizona also understands the Cougars' attack after defending it in practice. And the Wildcats return 10 starters on defense.

"We mirror each other," Stoops said. "We need to fine-tune our game plan and really know what we are doing and really try to anticipate how they are going to attack us."

(Copyright 2007 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.) APTV-08-27-07 1951MDT

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