It all starts on the defensive side of the ball for the 'Cats from Tucson. While the unit was projected to play well, that was before nearly half of the starters went down to injuries. Linebacker Jack Fischer, cornerback Jonathan McKnight, and safety Adam Hall all suffered a torn ACL in training camp. While there is a chance Hall will play a few snaps this week, do not expect him to start or play as he is capable of. Neither Fischer nor McKnight will play.
In addition to these three players, defensive tackle Justin Washington, who many projected as an NFL lineman one day, has lost a ton of weight and has since lost his starting spot. Senior safety Robert Goldin has also battled nagging injuries throughout his career and has been banged up a time or two in 2011.
Combine these losses with losing two players to the NFL and a few others to graduation and it is easy to see why Arizona gave up 130 points to Oklahoma State, Stanford and Oregon.
The other concern for UA is the health of their playmakers on offense. Juron Criner, Dan Buckner and Austin Hill all sustained injuries (or continued to suffer from preexisting ones) against Oregon and are listed as questionable for Saturday's matchup. While it remains to be seen if any of the three will play, none of them will be at full-strength.
After a tough loss on the road to Arizona State, it is tough to imagine the Trojans struggling against Arizona this weekend. Expect a double-digit victory.