Nothing is going right for the Arizona Wildcats, whose chances of qualifying for a bowl game are quickly slipping away.
Arizona lost its fifth in a row Saturday night, falling to Stanford, 34-10, in front of an announced crowd of 46,740 at Arizona Stadium.
At 2-6, the Wildcats would need to win their final four games to make a bowl. They are 0-5 in the Pac-12 – the only conference team that has yet to win a game in league play.
Stanford got three touchdowns from star running back Christian McCaffrey and ended a three-game losing streak in the conference. The Cardinal improved to 5-3, 3-3.
McCaffrey rushed for 169 yards, 3 shy of his season high.
The 34 points were a season high for Stanford, which had scored a total of 27 in its previous three conference games. Arizona’s 10 points were a season low.
Brandon Dawkins started at quarterback for Arizona and finished 5 of 15 for 116 yards with one touchdown and one interception. He also rushed for 65 yards.
Anu Solomon played for the first time since Week 1 but did not complete any of his three pass attempts.
Arizona visits Washington State next Saturday.
Arizona tried a new quarterback in the third quarter of its game against Stanford on Saturday night, but the Wildcats’ deficit only grew.
The UA trails Stanford 27-10 at the end of three at Arizona Stadium. The Wildcats are 15 minutes away from losing their fifth in a row.
After a three-and-out on Arizona’s first possession of the second half, Rich Rodriguez inserted Anu Solomon for Brandon Dawkins. Another three-and-out followed. Stanford then drove for a field goal to make it 20-7.
On the first play of the next possession, Solomon fumbled an exchange with Samajie Grant. Stanford’s Mike Tyler recovered the fumble at the UA 23-yard line. Three plays later, Christian McCaffrey scored his third touchdown of the game to make it 27-7.
Dawkins returned for the next series and guided the Wildcats 65 yards in eight plays for a 27-yard Josh Pollack field goal.
McCaffrey has 170 yards on 22 carries.
Newsflash: Christian McCaffrey is still good.
The 2015 Heisman Trophy runner-up scored two touchdowns in the second quarter as Stanford grabbed a 17-7 halftime lead over Arizona on Saturday night at Arizona Stadium.
After being held in check in the first quarter, McCaffrey ripped off a 45-yard TD run to give the Cardinal a 7-0 lead 39 seconds into the second. He then took advantage of a coverage bust to score on an 18-yard pass from first-time starter Keller Chryst. The Wildcats inexplicably left McCaffrey uncovered in the right flat after a play-action fake.
McCaffrey has 100 rushing yards and 123 scrimmage yards through two quarters.
Penalties hurt – then helped – the Wildcats on their first and only scoring drive. After overcoming a personal foul on Freddie Tagaloa, Arizona faced first-and-30 following a chop-block penalty. But a pass-interference foul on Stanford gave the UA an automatic first down.
Four plays later, Dawkins hit Trey Griffey for a 38-yard touchdown. Griffey caught the ball on a crossing route at the 28 and charged through the Cardinal secondary to make it 14-7 with 4:59 left in the half.
Arizona appeared to be in position to further cut into the deficit when Dane Cruikshank intercepted Chryst on the next possession. But after securing the ball, Cruikshank got blindsided by Stanford lineman Nate Herbig. Cruikshank fumbled the ball to the Cardinal’s Chris Harrell, giving Stanford first-and-10. The Cardinal drove for a 45-yard field goal with 20 seconds left to make it 17-7.
Arizona QB Brandon Dawkins, back in the lineup after missing the USC game because of a concussion, is 4 of 10 for 99 yards. He also has rushed for 36 yards.
Chryst is 8 of 18 for 66 yards.
Neither the Arizona Wildcats nor visiting Stanford could get anything going offensively in a scoreless first quarter at Arizona Stadium on Saturday night.
Brandon Dawkins started at quarterback for Arizona after missing the USC game because of a concussion. He has yet to complete a pass. His biggest highlight play so far is a 25-yard run.
Counterpart Keller Chryst, making his first career start, is 3 of 7 for 30 yards. The Wildcats have hit him several times. Michael Barton, Jake Matthews and Tellas Jones have combined for two sacks.
UA senior Samajie Grant, in his first career start at running back, has 14 yards on five carries. Stanford star Christian McCaffrey has 19 yards on five carries. His punt return for a touchdown was wiped out by a penalty.
Barton briefly left the game because of an apparent right-knee injury but returned soon after.