Found December 14, 2012 on
Fox Sports Arizona:
By RUSSELL CONTRERAS
ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. -- Expect a lot of offense when Arizona meets Nevada in the New Mexico Bowl on Saturday.
The game features two of the nation's best scoring offenses against two of the nation's worst scoring defenses.
Oh, and it also has two of the nation's best running backs.
Arizona's Ka'Deem Carey would become only the 16th player in NCAA history to have a 2,000-yard season if he can get 243 yards against Nevada on Saturday. Nevada's Stefphon Jefferson isn't too far behind, trailing Carey by only 54 yards.
Nevada coach Chris Ault and Arizona's Rich Rodriguez tried to downplay their star running backs Friday, and instead said any explosive offensive production during the first bowl game of the season would be the result of team effort.
"Stefphon is a very humble and modest young man," said Ault. "He's the first to tell you it's the offensive line ... it's them who are making him look good."
The matchup between the Wildcats (7-5) and the Wolf Pack (7-5) also marks the return of Rodriguez to the postseason. Rodriguez took over at Arizona this season after a disappointing stint at Michigan that ended with his firing in 2010.
He found a program in the desert that had plenty of offensive weapons, but not a lot of depth.
The combination led to some wild games for the Wildcats, who are among the most prolific offensive teams in the country but also give up yards and points in bunches.
Considered a trailblazer for the current no-huddle trend in college football, Rodriguez created a 2-minute-drill-all-the-time offense while at Glenville State back in the 1990s and later took a version of that system to Clemson and West Virginia. But Rodriguez faced resistance in trying to implement his system while at Michigan.
Asked if he felt vindicated by drawing attention to Arizona and getting his program to a bowl game, Rodriguez said he didn't know if he'd use that word.
"I feel I'm glad I'm back," said Rodriguez. "I was hungry for a challenge and I was hungry to be at a place that wanted to build a program the way we did this."
Both Nevada and Arizona got off to strong starts but ended the regular-season in disappointing fashion. Nevada started 6-1 to become eligible for a bowl. But an overtime loss to San Diego State sent the Wolf Pack into a 1-4 tailspin to close the season.
Meanwhile, Arizona looked poised for a winning conference record in its first year with Rodriguez in charge, but the Wildcats lost 41-34 at home to rival Arizona State in their season finale.
BEST OF MAXIM
Tempers flared on the Arizona sideline as one Arizona player punched another Arizona player in the face after a defensive breakdown. The Nevada Wolfpack was up 21 to 7 over the Arizona Wildcats and then this happened. Tevin Hood punched Cody Ippolito and Ippolito retaliated. These guys were pulled apart and brought back into the locker room.
The Nevada WolfPack and Arizona Wildcats kick off the 2012-2013 college football bowl season on Saturday, Dec. 15 at 1:00 p.m. ET on ESPN in the Gildan 2012 New Mexico Bowl.
While we will be presenting comprehensive coverage on what to expect in each bowl game, we’re also expanding into the lighter side of things like and cheerleaders showdowns.
[RELATED: Nevada vs. Arizona: What...
11am in Albuquerque will surely be explosive this Saturday. The New Mexico Bowl pits 7-5 Nevada of the Mountain West Conference against a 7-5 Arizona from the Pac-12. This is sure to be a shoot out as each team has many weapons on the offensive side of the ball.The spotlight will definitely be shining brightly on the quarterbacks and the studs in the backfield for both teams. Arizona...
Who: Nevada Wolfpack (7-5) vs Arizona Wildcats (7-5)
Where: Albuquerque, New Mexico
When: Saturday December 15th, 1 PM ET
Line: Arizona by 9
Ross: If you like good running backs, this is the game for you. Nevada has Stefphon Jefferson, the #4 rusher in the nation this year, with 1703 yards and 22 TDs on the season. Arizona has Ka'Deem...
Nevada vs. Arizona University Stadium, Albuquerque, NM Saturday, December 15th, 1:00 PM on ESPN
If you enjoyed the craziness that was the 2011 Alamo Bowl between Baylor and Washington - 123 points and 1,397 yards combined - this might be your best shot of seeing a similar game this year. Arizona and Nevada are both offensive minded teams that rank among the worst in the FBS...