A Hail Mary. No lead in regulation. Woh.
Arizona never led in the game's 60 minutes. Not until after game clock wound down had Anu Solomon completed a pass to Austin Hill for a 45-yard touchdown pass on a Hail Mary did the Wildcats lead over Cal.
The play gave UA an improbable 49-45 win to move the Wildcats to 4-0 on the year. Moreover, it gave them a victory despite giving up 573 total yards and rushing for just a total of 107.
An ominous start: Arizona gave up a 24-yard play on the first Cal touch from scrimmage. Two plays later, the Golden Bears used a 44-yard run for a touchdown. Cal quarterback Jared Goff connected with Bryce Treggs for an 80-yard touchdown on the fourth Cal touch, and the Wildcats' recovery of a fumble on the Cal 9-yard line led to a missed 27-yard field goal. There's your first five minutes of the game.
The Guy: Austin Hill was the hero, but Cayleb Jones got the Wildcats there. On a night where Solomon struggled to find cohesion with receivers, it was Jones being the go-to guy. His 13 receptions for 176 yards and three touchdowns kept UA in it.
Back to Bondurant: Tra'Mayne Bondurant finally saw a significant amount of playing time, and he had an immediate impact from a new spot on the field. Instead of taking back his spur safety spot, it appears Bondurant was playing as a linebacker. That kept William Parks in his spur spot and Jared Tevis at bandit.
1:06: That was the average time of possession for the Golden Bears in the first half. For it, they led 28-6 at the half.
The killer play that wasn't so amazing: Arizona finally looked ready to fight with a gritty drive early in the third quarter. But with a chance to get the ball back with just five minutes expired and trailing by 11 points, the Wildcats couldn't keep Cal from converting on a 3rd-and-9 at the Cal 26-yard line. The Golden Bears would burn another two minutes off the game clock and avoid any loss of momentum by tacking on a field goal with eight minutes to go in the third.
Anu to the Pac-12: Our old friend, Kyle Kensing, called this a replay of B.J. Denker's first Pac-12 game from 2013. Anu Solomon was overthrowing, throwing as if out routes were going in and panicking in the pocket. Still, it wasn't all on the quarterback. The few times he did throw it on the button, his receivers dropped it. Once, a pretty deep ball to Cayleb Jones that was dropped came with a pretty clear pass interference penalty going unflagged by the officials. It was that type of night. Except for his final throw -- he went 47-for-73 for 520 yards, five touchdowns and two picks.
The killer play that gave Arizona hope: After settling for a field goal early in the fourth, fortunes finally went Arizona's way. A pass toward the group was flipped up into the air and intercepted by Bondurant. After a 24-yard return inside the Cal 20, the Wildcats punched in a touchdown to make it 31-23 with nearly the entire fourth to play.
The other, other killer play: Arizona's tricky kicking and successful late onside kick helped overcome the early missed field goal. They got the ball back with less than four minutes to play and scored a touchdown -- a botched two-point attempt kept UA behind 45-43 before the final possession, which followed a missed Cal field goal attempt with less than a minute to go.
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