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The disparity is astounding


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Arizona Daily Wildcat

Dan Rosen

By Dan Rosen
Arizona Daily Wildcat,
November 29, 1999
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Maybe Trung Canidate said it best after the game on Saturday. "We were average, that goes for everybody. But the thing is, we have players in here that want more. It is easy to be average, all you have to do is wake up in the morning and do whatever, and you are average, and that is where the season has ended up. It just shows you that individuals making plays and individuals trying to be overachievers is not going to win this game. It is a team game and you have to perform as a team."

Canidate talked about people wanting it more, and it is fairly obvious who those folks were. Because of that, the disparity amongst the senior class this year for the Arizona football team was extraordinary.

You have guys like Dennis Northcutt setting a record just about every time he steps on the field. A guy that worked with track and field sprint coach Fred Harvey in the offseason to gain some speed and a guy that deserves any postseason award he gets.

Canidate, who each time he was given the ball ran as hard as he could, never stopped because one player had wrapped him up, always kept his feet moving, his legs churning.

Keith Smith, who overcame his height deficiency and became one of the most prolific passers in Arizona history.

Marcus Bell, who could have been spotted in the weight room, the field or in the classroom every day for the past four years. He wasn't highly recruited, but he has a long pro career ahead of him.

And DaShon Polk, a guy who cried at the end of the game when he realized that he was never going to wear the Cardinal and Navy again.

These five guys epitomized what college football is all about.

Unfortunately, though, they were all alone amongst the seniors who saw more time on the field than on the pines this season.

Manuia Savea could be on that list as well, but after his troubles with the law this season, he doesn't belong in the same breath as the true leaders on the team.

Kelvin Hunter, or as I like to call him "Cushion," never seemed to realize that he was a senior and had to actually play like one. Why "Cushion?" Well, it is because he is as soft as one and he gave a huge one to the opposing receiver. He was terrible and Arizona fans shouldn't shed a tear because he is gone.

Leland Gayles, Greg Payne, Rafell Jones, Scooter Sprotte and Mark McDonald also shouldn't be missed.

These guys were part of a class that needed to lead, but they kept shooting themselves in the foot and got no respect for it. Hunter may have been the leader of this laughing stock, but the rest of the musketeers fell in line perfectly.

It is too bad for the guys like Northcutt, Bell, Polk, Smith and Canidate that they had to share the same field, locker room and accolades with the likes of this motley crew.

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