2010 is shaping up to be the year where Arizona will break whatever curse is on them and go to the Rose Bowl
No they won't. They lost both coordinators. How does that put you in a better situation than you were before.
Arizona replaced them from inside the program, with the exception of co-defensive coordinator Greg Brown from Colorado. New co-offensive coordinators Bill Bedenbaugh and Seth Littrell both come from a spread offense background and will provide continuity for a offense that broke out last season.
So losing the offensive coordinator, Sonny Dykes, who made our offense what it was makes us better? None of these guys have ever called a play before.
When Dykes first came to Arizona, he had never called a play either. Anyone who watched the offense knows that they basically called three types of plays; screens, a fade or draws. Nothing that was too risky or out there. Hopefully Mike Stoops lets the handcuffs off of the new coordinators and let them call a variety of plays.
Plus Arizona is bringing back most of the offense who finally clicked once Nick Foles took the driver seat. They only lose three players from an offense who averaged nearly 30 points a game that past two seasons.
Yeah, well they lost seven starters on defense including all three linebackers.
They really didn't develop any linebackers behind the three starters this past year. Of the linebackers projected to start right now they had 16 tackles, all of which came on special teams.
That doesn't exactly sound like a ringing endorsement.
The good news is there are reinforcements coming. The Wildcats have two JUCO linebackers already on campus for spring drills. Derek Earls and Paul Vassallo come highly regarded and won't be expected to sit on the bench and learn the defense for a year. They will see extended playing time in their first year in a Wildcat uniform.
Okay, so losing seven starters and a defensive coordinator? How does that make the defense better, nonetheless good.
Some say that losing Mark Stoops is a good thing for the program because towards the end of games they had the lead, they would turn into the prevent defense. Co-defensive coordinator Brown and Tim Kish will bring something new and have similar features as Kish has been on Mike Stoops staff since he came to Arizona. Having something the same will help the players learning curve who need to step into starting roles.
So four coordinators in Stoops ear, that won't add to the chaos know as Hurricane Stoops.
Stoops has actually calmed down a lot, in fact he may have calmed down too much as any people who witnessed the Holiday Bowl. Anyone who has watched the maturity of the program has seen that Stoops knows what he's doing. He has taken a program that was one of the worst in the country and has turned them into a Pac-10 title contender.
Well what about losing Rob Gronkowski? He was our best player and our best chance of getting to the Rose Bowl?
Look at this season. They were planning to build the offense around him and were six seconds away from the Rose Bowl (Oregon game). Stoops has a plan and so far the plan has worked out.
If there was ever a guy to take Arizona to the Rose Bowl, Stoops is the guy who will do it. In 2010 the Pac-10 will be down and be wide open. If the team can rally around low expectations and defense surprises everyone, this will be the year that Arizona will be will take their first trip to Pasadena.