TUCSON, Ariz. — Trung Canidate put some life in Arizona's struggling offense with a 66-yard scoring run, and the Wildcats sacked Alabama Birmingham freshman Lee Jolly six times to defeat the Blazers, 24-10, Saturday night.
The game was delayed 33 minutes by a lightning storm, and rain fell intermittently throughout.
But the weather had less to do with the game's slow pace than Arizona's ball control--the Wildcats ran for 365 yards--and rugged defense. Joe Salave'a had three sacks and Chester Burnett had two.
Canidate didn't touch the ball in the first quarter as Arizona Coach Dick Tomey started senior Kevin Schmidtke in the first home game, but he finished with 192 yards in 23 carries.
On his touchdown, Canidate found an opening off tackle, accelerated near midfield and outran safety Alan Willis to give the Wildcats a 21-7 lead with 9:51 left in the third quarter.
Keith Smith scored on a six-yard bootleg for Arizona (1-1), Kelvin Eafon had a one-yard touchdown run, and T.J. Rodriquez kicked a 26-yard field goal.
Alabama Birmingham (0-3) got its second touchdown this season on Lucious Foster's 29-yard run, and Jake Arians added a 41-yard field goal.
Kevin Drake was their best offensive weapon, with seven catches for 144 yards.
Schmidtke carried eight times in the first Arizona scoring drive, starting with a 13-yard run and finishing with successive carries of 13, five and two yards to reach the eight.
After a carry by Eafon, Smith sent Schmidtke left and fooled the defense with his keeper around right end with 4:13 left in the first quarter.
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NEXT FOR UCLA
WHERE: Rose Bowl
WHEN: Sept. 27, 12:30 p.m.
TV: Fox Sp. West
RADIO: XTRA (1150)