The life of Reilly
You think you know pain? Try being Trevor Reilly.
The Utah senior linebacker played all last year with a torn ACL he suffered during the prior spring. But that’s nothing: The team’s eldest player has had to watch as his baby daughter, Shaya, is undergoing treatment for kidney cancer.
“I go to the hospital, then I go to practice,” Reilly told The Deseret News in August. “It’s hard not to think about it. I have a daughter with cancer, and I’m out here running around, playing a game.”
Reilly hasn’t let his injuries or his daughter’s health issues keep him from leading the Utes in tackles (44) through six games. He also ranks second on the team with 5.5 tackles-for-loss.
Leaving the Beehive State
The Utes have kept Utah home, sweet, home until Saturday, the first out-of-state game for the team all year. It’s the team’s latest out-of-state opener since they traveled to Wyoming on Oct. 25 in 1947.
Arizona, meanwhile, has traveled out of state three times this season: The Wildcats won at UNLV and lost at Washington and USC.
Who you gonna call?
Bill Murray, of “Ghostbusters,” “Groundhog Day” and “Saturday Night Live” fame — or is it “Caddyshack,” “What About Bob?” and “Lost in Translation” fame? — gave the Wildcats a little shout-out on Saturday.
The celebrity guest picker
on ESPN’s “College GameDay,” Murray added an extra pick, as a bonus, picking Arizona over Utah. Murray, an Arizona basketball fan — his son, Luke, served on Sean Miller’s staff a few years ago — picked the Wildcats football team because Tucson-born Linda Ronstadt is a just-announced Rock and Roll Hall of Fame nominee.
The Wildcats were doomed on two big fourth downs in the first quarter, though only one ultimately proved costly.
On the Utes’ first drive, Utah got a crucial fourth-down conversion as Kelvin York had a 7-yard gain to the Arizona 46-yard line. Utah squandered the extra opportunity, however, mustering three straight zero-yard plays before punting.
Later in the quarter, a blown fourth down hurt the Wildcats a bit more.
Arizona quarterback B.J. Denker was dwarfed for a 7-yard loss on a quarterback designed run, keeping the Wildcats from potentially taking the lead on a fourth-and-one from the Utah 2-yard line. The play squandered what was a nice drive.
Blue Brigade, Part II
Arizona dressed head to toe in navy blue for the first time this season, a move that — we suspect — was made to differentiate Rich Rodriguez’s team from the red-and-white-clad Utes.
The hue has a major role in UA football history. Coach Tex Oliver outfitted his teams in powder blue uniforms during the 1930s, earning them the nickname “The Blue Brigade.”
The big number
Arizona held Utah to 32 first-half passing yards and intercepted Utes starter Travis Wilson twice.
Better things to do
Cleveland Indians manager Terry Francona watched from the Arizona sidelines Saturday. Francona came to town for the Eddie Vosberg Celebrity Golf Classic; he owns a home here.
Francona didn’t feel much need to watch the American League Championship Series on Saturday, even though his former squad — the Boston Red Sox — secured a spot in the World Series.