Three days before facing off against each other in a battle of the nation's best running backs, the Arizona Wildcats' Ka'Deem Carey and Nevada's Stefphon Jefferson squared off Wednesday night - in Connect Four.
They played the game, which requires players to line up four colored chips in a row in a vertically slotted board, as part of the New Mexico Bowl's Wednesday game night.
"You know it," the UA sophomore said with a smile.
Jefferson shook his head in mock disgust.
"I made a mental error," he said. "He was having fun with me; we were having a good time."
In another world, maybe Cody Fajardo would be wearing a red helmet Saturday.
The Arizona Wildcats offered him a scholarship after his senior season, in 2009, at Anaheim (Calif.) Servite High School.
Letter-of-intent day was on a Wednesday. Fajardo committed to the Wolf Pack that Friday, five days before the deadline, and then was offered by both the UA and Nebraska over the weekend.
He never visited Tucson.
"I was excited about Nevada, and I stuck by my word," he said.
Not that it was always easy.
"You can be immature sometimes," said the Wolf Pack's starting quarterback. "I had a lot of sayings from different people telling me different things to do.
"Essentially, I want to do what's best for me, and I found the right place in Nevada."
Survey says …
At Thursday night's team dinner at the Albuquerque Convention Center, the Wildcats and Wolf Pack were matched against each other in a game of "Survey Says," a "Family Feud" knockoff.
The game featured a real host - in a cool maroon '70s suit - with buzzers, lights, cameras and video screens listing the most common answers from 100 polled people.
The Wildcats dominated the game, winning categories that included "Chores You Do on a Saturday," "Things You Put on a Baked Potato," "Phobias" and "Winter Olympic Sports."
The UA offense beat the Nevada defense, then the Wildcats' defense lost to the Wolf Pack offense. In Round 3, the Wildcats' assistant coaches beat Nevada.
It was a good sign for the UA - the past four years, the "Survey Says" winner has gone on to take the football game, too.
ACC officials will call Saturday's bowl, one of four postseason contests they've been assigned.
The Pac-12 has at least one more high-profile gig lined up: their officials are calling the BCS Championship Game as one of their four assignments.
The Wildcats average 57.75 penalty yards per game, the 83rd-fewest in America, while Nevada is No. 94 with 61.83.
The Wildcats figure to see fewer penalties Saturday. Pac-12 officials have thrown an amazing number of flags this year; UCLA, Cal, Washington, Oregon and USC are five of the 11 worst teams, nationally, in terms of penalty yards per game.
The big number
The score of "Survey Says" before Nevada tallied its first point.
Tweet of the day
"Arizona 1-Nevada 0 #surveysays" - UA place-kicker Jake Smith, @IKick, after the game
Rich Rodriguez allows for every married member of his traveling party to bring along their spouses, if they choose.
Drew Robinson, the Wildcats' 22-year-old senior tight end, is no exception.
He brought along wife Kensi, whom he married one year ago. She is pregnant with the couple's first child, who is due this spring.
Robinson is one of two married Wildcats; guard Shane Zink brought his wife, Erin, who is also expecting their first child.
"He's a really good dancer. He dances in the locker room." - Fajardo, on running back Jefferson
Nevada tackle Jeff Nady is no stranger to Arizona; his cousin Xavier played for the Diamondbacks in 2011.
Jeff Nady's father pitched at Nevada. Jeff's cousin, an 11-year major-league veteran, played for the Washington Nationals this year before joining the world champion San Francisco Giants midseason.
Xavier Nady, a Cal graduate, went to a Nevada football game after the baseball season ended.