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Gameday Grades: Utah vs. Arizona

Gameday Grades: Utah vs. Arizona

Estimated read time: 3-4 minutes

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SALT LAKE CITY — In a must-needed win for the Utah Utes, the team falls at home to the Arizona Wildcats 34-24, ending Utah's chances of going to a bowl in the postseason.

Quarterback: B+

Travis Wilson was much, much better than last week, but couldn't find a way to get his team a win. Overall, Wilson tried to lead his team to victory, but it seemed like the offense could never get things to jel. Wilson ended the night going 28-of-40 for 311 yards and two touchdown.

Running Backs: A-

White was explosive, found some breaks and broke several tackles to get positive yards. However, it wasn't enough for Utah get the victory. Saturday's loss is the second week in a row where the stat about White getting over 100 yards has not resulted in a victory. White is a great athlete, but he alone is not enough to win games.

Receivers: A-

DeVonte Christopher put in the hard work over the last few weeks to earn a spot back on the playing field. As a result, Christopher had three catches for a total of 84 yards and a touchdown. Wilson threw to several receivers and distributed the ball well, but the 313 receiving yards was not enough to stop Arizona, which unfortunately for the Utes, was one of their most successful passing games of the season.

Offensive Line: B+

The offensive line held their own and created gaps for White for most of the night. Additionally, the offensive line managed to keep Wilson from ending up on the ground and gave him time to make plays. However, on the many third and short or fourth and short, the offensive line was not able to muscle past the defense to get the first down.

Overall Offense: B+

It wasn't the most explosive offense ever seen, but Utah's offense made progress this week against Arizona. Utah managed 449 yards of offense, but struggled to convert on third and fourth downs. Utah was seven-of-16 and one-of-five on third and fourth down, respectively, which ended up being the difference in the end.

Defensive Line: C-

The defensive line was pushed around for a majority of the night, allowing for Arizona's Ka'Deem Carey to run all over the place. The rush defense was not even present for most of the game. Carey managed 204 of the 320 rushing yards.

Linebackers: D+

The linebacking core was nearly absent, especially in the first half. While the defensive line was pushed around, the linebackers missed tackles, blew coverage and struggled in containment. The middle of the field was essentially open all night, which allowed for Arizona quarterback Matt Scott to make a quick pass for easy yards.

Secondary: A-

The secondary did a decent job in coverage. Eric Rowe and Moe Lee were great on man-to-man coverage, contesting every pass thrown in their direction. They did not make it easy for the receivers to catch the ball and were often the only line of defense on missed tackles or blown coverage by the linebackers.

Overall Defense: C-

The defense did not allow Utah to stay in the game. While the offense had its moments, the defense allowed for Arizona to have what they wanted, especially in the run game. Arizona managed to put up 480 yards on Utah, but with better coverage and containment, it could have likely been cut in half.

Special Teams: A-

There wasn't much on special teams to really get excited about except for the fake field goal by Coleman Peterson for a touchdown. However, that was essentially squashed by the fake punt attempt that went nowhere and gave Arizona the opportunity to score on their next drive.

Overall Team: C

Saturday's performance was mediocre on all accounts. Utah could move the ball, but would get stuck every once in awhile on third or fourth down, which stalled the momentum. On the other side of the ball, the defense essentially let Arizona walk all over them. Had Arizona not gifted Utah with multiple turnovers, the score would have been much higher.

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Josh Furlong


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