Four games into the 2012 season, the Arizona Wildcats have both problems and issues.
There is, as any coach would attest, a distinction: Problems are fixable with a change of personnel or improved execution.
Issues, however, can linger for years.
Arizona (3-1 overall, 0-1 Pac-12) will get a better idea of which is which tonight, when it takes on No. 18 Oregon State at Arizona Stadium. The Wildcats are coming off a humbling 49-0 loss at Oregon a week ago, while the Beavers (2-0, 1-0) have upset a pair of ranked teams, Wisconsin and UCLA, so far this season.
First-year coach Rich Rodriguez said "a lot - well, some" of Arizona's problems are fixable. How many, though, won't be known for weeks. For all their offensive successes, the Wildcats have been brutal in the red zone and in the kicking game; defensively, the UA continues to surrender yards in chunks.
"Some of the problems we have didn't happen overnight and won't be solved overnight," he said. "Some of them are easily correctable if we focus on the fundamentals, what we're supposed to do on each and every play, and the assignment within that play."
For now, quarterback Matt Scott falls into the "fixable" category - and, even then, it's mostly tweaks.
Scott completed 22 of 44 passes last week against Oregon, and was intercepted three times. Arizona needs him to gain yards and score points to have a chance to win. Consider:
• Scott is 7-2 in his UA career as a starter.
• In his seven wins, the dual-threat quarterback is averaging 330.8 total yards and a little under two (1.85) touchdowns per game.
• In his two losses - a 2009 thumping at Iowa and last week's loss to Oregon - he averaged 154 1/2 yards and did not score a touchdown.
• Scott has turned the ball over as many times (4) in his seven wins as he has in his two losses.
Taken as a whole, the senior's performance this season has been spectacular.
In four games, he has completed 110 of 167 passes for 1,205 yards.
He has also rushed for 199 yards on 47 attempts.
The Oregon performance "was one game, really," Scott said.
"One game won't really tell the tale of what we have on our team," he said.
"We have plenty of football left. … We're going to get that corrected. You won't see the same problems this week."
The visiting Beavers boast the nation's second-best rushing defense, and a quarterback - Sean Mannion - who appears on the verge of stardom.
"We've got to be ready," UA center Kyle Quinn said.
Matt Scott by the numbers
7-2: Scott's career record as a starter
In his seven wins
• Passing: 163 for 231, 1,859 yards, 11 TDs, 4 interceptions
• Rushing: 77 carries, 457 yards, 2 TDs
• Total: 2,316 yards, 13 TDs
In his two losses
• Passing: 26 for 58, 260 yards, 0 TDs, 4 INTs
• Rushing: 12 carries, 48 yards, 0 TDs
• Total: 308 yards, 0 TDs
• What: No. 18 Oregon State at Arizona
• When: 7 p.m.
• TV: Pac-12 Arizona (Comcast, Ch 103; Cox, Ch 75; contact Dish for info; DirecTV, not available
• Radio: 1290-AM, 107.5-FM, 990-AM (Spanish)