Stoops, Arizona look for big-time program win

LOS ANGELES, CA - DECEMBER 05:  Coach Mike Stoops of the Arizona Wildcats celebrates with cornerback Mike Turner #2 after beating the USC Trojans 21-17 in the NCAA college football game at the Los Angeles Coliseum on December 5, 2009 in Los Angeles, California.  (Photo by Kevork Djansezian/Getty Images)

Under the direction of Mike Stoops, Arizona has won some very big games. The Wildcats knocked off a top 10 team three years in a row from 2005-07, with UCLA, California and Oregon all being their victims. This past year, Arizona even knocked off the Pac 10’s Goliath in USC.

But those wins all came late in the season, when Arizona had already piled up a handful of losses. One thing the Wildcats — who seem to perennially be thought of as a sleeper team — have not done, is capitalize on any preseason hype with a big-time early-season win.

They have the chance to do that tonight, though, when they play host to No. 9 Iowa. A win moves the Wildcats to 3-0 and gives them some serious national respect. It would also be a huge victory for the Pac 10, which is trying to assert itself as a top conference, even with a lethargic, and penalized, USC.

Can Stoops and Arizona pull it off? Click through for that prediction, and more from today’s games. Read the rest of this entry »

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