Shereen Rayan and I interviewed each other on the UW Huskies–Arizona Wildcats matchup this weekend. Here are some insights from the other side.
Yesterday, after publishing Tanner Sucher’s prediction that the Huskies will defeat Arizona, I was contacted by Shereen Rayan and Eric Townsend of Zona Zealots, FanSided’s site dedicated to University of Arizona athletics.
They asked me three questions about the Huskies and their critical Pac-12 game in Tucson this Saturday and I asked Rayan a few questions about the Cats, who will be starting Brandon Dawkins at quarterback, his third start of his career. On paper, starting an inexperienced quarterback against a rabid Huskies defense loaded with talent looks like a recipe for a blowout, much like the 49-3 stomping of Arizona at Husky Stadium last year.
But, as a passionate Wildcat fan pointed out to me on Twitter yesterday during a lengthy exchange (see Tweets and Replies @EmeraldCitySwag), Dawkins played well in his last start, albeit against a weak Hawaii Rainbow Warriors defense. Dawkins sat the first game of the season but saddled up in Week Two against Grambling State. He struggled in the first half and showed signs of life in the second half of that game. After shredding Hawaii, it remains to be seen if he can stand up to Budda Baker and company Saturday.
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I asked Rayan of Zona Zealots about Arizona’s confusing quarterback situation and few other questions. Here are her responses:
Who is the best quarterback on Arizona’s roster?
Khalil Tate but they haven’t played him yet, true freshman, no experience yet, (Brandon) Dawkins has a ton of potential, great person, lot’s [sic] of positive energy, can run like a running back, totally underestimated.
What’s your score prediction (for Saturday’s game) and why?
Prediction: 27-24 Washington, I think this game will be closer than Washington fans think, yes, [they] have the best defense, but they will be in our house, and our team has something to prove, especially [Brandon] Dawkins, so even though the home team has won in each of the last eight games, I am thinking Arizona will put up a good fight, even though it may be in the second quarter, and Washington will win by a field goal.
What’s your evaluation of Dawkins so far in his first two starts?
Brandon has been itching to play, and he is finally the starter for the third game in a row (at least that’s what most predict, (Arizona head coach) Rich [Rodriguez] won’t tell us until right before the game). Brandon has a lot to prove, he wants to keep his job, he is extremely confident in his abilities, and last season we were very close to possibly upsetting Arizona State in Phoenix because of Brandon.
He has a great relationship and connection with Trey Griffey (Ken Griffey Jr’s son) and we have a bunch of freshman who are wowwing us, so he has new targets no one ever talks about. He also runs the ball, Touchdown, First down, get down, that’s what his coaches preach.
Dawkins has made great improvements from Week Two to Three, so we look for more each week. Dawkins will surprise you, he hasn’t thrown an interception (knocking on wood) yet this season, and our defense has caused eight turnovers in the last two games…UDubb is a different caliber team, but the Huskies have yet to play our caliber team either…. BEARDOWN! Go Cats!
The Huskies play Arizona Saturday, September 24th in Tucson at 7:30 PST. Catch the game on Pac-12 Network.