Smith takes over as UA wins big
Wildcat File Photo
Arizona Daily Wildcat
UA running back Leon Callen (29) makes an outstanding run while Hawaii's Jeff Ulbrich (44) tries to stop him during the first quarter yesterday in Honolulu. Arizona won 27-6.
Now it's Keith Smith's turn.
The junior quarterback, who lost his job to Jenkins after a shoulder injury last season, made a solid bid to regain his job as starter when he came in and passed for touchdowns of 17 yards to Jeremy McDaniel and 7 to Dennis Northcutt as the Wildcats won in Hawaii, 27-6.
For the game, Smith completed 17 of 22 passes for 218 yards.
Jenkins started the game, but was yanked after completing only two of eight passes for 14 yards.
''We're gonna continue to play both of them and O.J.'s gonna keep playing and Keith is gonna keep playing,'' head coach Dick Tomey said. ''We're going to try to win games. But that's a good example of one guy that's really hot and one guy that wasn't.''
Northcutt caught eight passes for 91 yards and McDaniel had eight catches for 90 yards.
The Wildcats' defense also played a major role in the victory, wearing down the Hawaii offense in the second half. Over the final 30 minutes, the Rainbows mustered only 52 yards in total offense and punted on all seven possessions.
All told, Hawaii punted 12 times.
Hawaii's only score came on a 25-yard pass from Dan Robinson to Dwight Carter in the second quarter and came after an Arizona turnover.
Robinson, who like Smith also came off the bench, was the Rainbows' bright spot, completing eight of 11 passes for 83 yards.
Most of the fans weren't even in their seats when McAlister raced almost untouched up the middle of the field on his 100-yard run. Only six seconds elapsed when he crossed the goal line.
''I don't know that I've ever been part of a situation when the opening kickoff went the distance,'' Hawaii coach Fred vonAppen said. ''It was like letting the air out of a balloon. I thought out kids rallied back from that, but we didn't play well in the second half.''
The Wildcats threatened to take control on its second possession as they quickly moved to the Hawaii 34, but Jenkins overthrew two receivers to give the ball to the Rainbows.
But with Josh Skinner taking the snaps, Hawaii managed only 1 yard in total offense on its first four possessions, going three-and-out, and drawing boos from the hometown fans.
''We didn't play particularly well in any phase,'' vonAppen said. ''We were tired, the defense had to play a lot of snaps, but that's life. You got to play 'em and you got to tackle 'em when you have the opportunities.''