Scooby Wright III

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Arizona kicks off bowl season with wild New Mexico Bowl victory

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The first game of this year’s college football bowl season was not one short for fun. Arizona (7-6) came away with an exhilarating, back-and-forth New Mexico Bowl victory over New Mexico (7-6) of the Mountain West Conference, winning 45-37 on Saturday afternoon in Albuquerque.

Arizona took a 28-17 into halftime and wasted little time extending its lead in the third quarter. Jared Baker broke loose for a 32-yard touchdown run right up the middle fo the New Mexico defense on Arizona’s second-half opening drive. New Mexico could not be buried though, as the Lobos and Wildcats exchanged touchdowns in the third quarter, with each scoring twice. Arizona capitalized on a New Mexico turnover a Lamar Johnson interception that put the Wildcats on the four-yard line. One play later, Baker crossed the goal line for a short touchdown and a 42-24 lead.

New Mexico rallied to make things interesting, getting a three-yard Lamar Jordan scoring jaunt to pull within 42-31 late in the third quarter and a four-yard Austin Apodaca dash to climb with 42-37 with 13:52 to play.

Arizona welcomed back linebacker Scooby Wright III, who finally got on the field after a season riddled with injury issues, and he turned in an admirable performance, hitting double digits in total tackles in the first half alone, then making two clinching plays to thwart New Mexico’s rally. Facing a 4th-and-13 with 6:42 remaining, Wright sacked Apodaca to end the threat. After a Casey Skowron field goal with 1:32 to play, it was Wright who pressured Apodaca into his game-ending interception.

Arizona quarterback Anu Solomon looked like the player that led the ‘Cats to the Pac-12 South title a year ago, throwing for 329 yards and two touchdowns while adding another on the ground. Arizona wide receiver Cayleb Jones turned in a big game as well, with 182 receiving yards and a score.

With the win, Arizona head coach Rich Rodriguez picked up his third bowl victory since being named the head coach at Arizona. Arizona has won three of the last four bowl games they have played in, which included the New Mexico Bowl in 2012 as well. Arizona lost last year’s Fiesta Bowl against Boise State. New Mexico head coach Bob Davie is still on the prowl for his first career bowl victory. Davie was 0-3 in postseason bowl games at Notre Dame.

In 2016, Arizona will kick off the new season in Glendale, Arizona against BYU on September 3. New Mexico will also open the new season that same day, but they will do so at home against FCS power Sam Houston State.

New Mexico Bowl: Scooby Wright and Cayleb Jones dominant in first half for Arizona

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Welcome back, Scooby Wright III. Arizona’s top linebacker may have missed the majority of this season, but he is putting ona  show in the New Mexico Bowl with a game-high 10 tackles in the first half as Arizona leads New Mexico 28-17. This first bowl game of the year has had a little bit of everything in the first half, including twice setting a record for the longest pass in New Mexico Bowl history.

Arizona took a lead on New Mexico on a crazy four-play sequence that saw Arizona have a fake punt stuffed by the Lobos, the Arizona defense pick off a deep pass to the endzone on the very next play, and finish with a 78-yard pass from Anu Solomon to Cayleb Jones for a 7-3 lead in the first quarter. The play was the longest pass play in New Mexico Bowl history, but that record would not last long. New Mexico quarterback Lamar Jordan completed a 92-yard strike to Delane Hart-Johnson late in the first half to break the record for a second time in the first half.

In addition to Arizona getting a fine showing from Wright, wide receiver Jones has been unstoppable. Jones has already gone off for 182 yards and a touchdown on just four receptions for Arizona.

This should be a wild second half.

Scooby Wright III and Anu Solomon expected to be available for New Mexico Bowl

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The 2015 college football season will be one for the ages when it comes to star players and injuries. Few teams realized that as drmaaticly as Arizona, who lost both star linebacker Scooby Wright III and starting quarterback Anu Solomon for chunks of the season due to various injury concerns. Fortunately, it looks as though both will be ready to play in Arizona’s final game of the season in the New Mexico Bowl.

Wright, the 2014 Pac-12 Defensive Player of the Year, Bronko Nagurski Trophy and Chuck Bednarik Trophy winner, has played in just two games this season. He left the first game of the season with a knee injury early on against UTSA in the season opener. He missed the next two games and returned briefly against UCLA in late September before having to leave once again due to the injury.

Solomon appeared in 10 games this season, although he missed the regular-season finale against Arizona State. Solomon also sat out an early October game against Stanford due to concussion symptoms. A year after passing for 3,793 yards and 28 touchdowns, Solomon’s 2015 season struggled to keep pace and keep him on the field at times.

Arizona plays New Mexico in the New Mexico Bowl this Saturday.

Rich Rod says Arizona’s Scooby Wright out 3-4 weeks

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Amid the rash of injuries to key players around the college football nation in Week 1 was one to Arizona’s Scooby Wright III. The star linebacker was relegated to moving with the help of a cane in Arizona’s season-opener against UTSA, and he will be forced to miss action for the next month.

Arizona head coach Rich Rodriguez said today Wright will be out three or four weeks after having an operation on his lateral meniscus. This news confirms earlier reports saying the knee injury is not expected to be a season-ending injury. In fact, if that timeline holds, Wright should be available for the majority of Arizona’s Pac-12 schedule.

Missing the next three games would cost Wright a chance to play against Nevada, Northern Arizona and UCLA. Missing a fourth game would also tack on a road game at Stanford. Both UCLA and Stanford are key games on the Pac-12 schedule for Arizona, so the absence of Wright is a tough blow. But it would appear the expectation is to have Wright back by the time Arizona hosts Oregon State on October 10 and then have him available for the remainder of the season. That would keep him on the field for the majority of the Pac-12 South schedule in a division in which each game will be critical in a competitive division race.

Arizona’s Scooby Wright III leaves game with apparent knee injury

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Arizona has opened up a 21-10 lead on UTSA in the season opener in Tucson, and Anu Solomon is having a nice season debut with a pair of touchdown throws, but all eyes have shifted on one of Arizona’s top defensive players instead. Scooby Wright III, one fo the top defensive players in the nation, has left the game with an apparent left knee injury.

Early reports say Wright will be out for the remainder of the game, and given the photo share din the Twitter message below, it is easy to see why. Wright was on the bench with ice wrapped around his left knee, and he does not look too happy about it.

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