BEAR DOWN BOWL PREP: Cats get ready to face Purdue - Tucson News Now

BEAR DOWN BOWL PREP: Cats get ready to face Purdue

(Photo Courtesy: AP and Arizona Athletics) (Photo Courtesy: AP and Arizona Athletics)
TUCSON, AZ (Tucson News Now) -

The Arizona Wildcats are in the midst of 15 practices this month to prepare to face the Purdue Boilermakers on Dec. 27 in the Foster Farms Bowl in Santa Clara, California.

Arizona finished the regular season with a 7-5 record. The emergence of quarterback Khalil Tate propelled the team to four straight wins in October, but the Wildcats lost three of their final four games, including a heart breaker to Arizona State to close out the season.

Tate was injured in the rivalry game but is back at practice and head coach Rich Rodriguez says he expects the sophomore to play in the bowl game, the fifth since Rodriguez (3-1 in bowl games) took over the UA program.

The Wildcats finished first in the Pac-12 in rushing offense but last in the Pac-12 in passing defense. That despite the fact UA led the league in interceptions (18).

We chatted with junior cornerback Jace Whittaker about why there was such a disparity this season defensively.

Purdue finished the year with a 6-6 record, winning its final two games to reach bowl eligibility. The Boilermakers are led by quarterback Elijah Sindelar and running back Markell Jones.

Arizona’s last bowl game appearance came in 2015 as they defeated New Mexico in the New Mexico Bowl.

Stay tuned to Tucson News Now all through the month of December for continuous bowl game coverage.

Kickoff for the Foster Farms Bowl is 6:30 p.m. MST and will be televised here in Tucson on our FOX 11.

Copyright 2017. Tucson News Now. All rights reserved.

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