UA football considering Kino for spring game

2012-01-19T00:00:00Z 2014-09-15T10:25:07Z UA football considering Kino for spring gameRyan Finley Arizona Daily Star Arizona Daily Star
January 19, 2012 12:00 am  • 

The Arizona Wildcats' April 14 spring game will be moved off campus while Arizona Stadium undergoes a $72 million face-lift.

Kino Stadium is open.

The UA has talked with Pima County about moving the game to the south-side park, athletic director Greg Byrne said Wednesday. Byrne and a handful of athletic department officials walked the sidelines at Monday's Casino del Sol College All-Star Game, which drew more than 7,800 fans to the converted baseball stadium.

"I thought they did a very good job," he said.

Kino Stadium has been branching out to include different sports. Pima College plays its home football games there. The facility will host the Tucson Desert Cup, a Major League Soccer exhibition tournament, next month.

The spring game, the final scrimmage of annual spring drills, typically draws between 5,000 and 7,000 fans to Arizona Stadium. Rich Rodriguez's first camp and a possible relocation to Kino Stadium could bump attendance, Byrne said.

"To use a baseball term," he said, "we think it'd be a home run."

Neal to visit Feb. 11

Arizona coaches scored a victory Wednesday, when they convinced Scottsdale Chaparral High School's Davonte Neal - the state's top undecided player and the program's No. 1 recruiting target - to take an official visit to campus.

But there's a catch: Neal won't visit until Feb. 11, 10 days after national letter-of-intent day. That's by design, Neal's father told The Arizona Republic.

"He wants to do that," Luke Neal said. "He wants to take that weekend after Jan. 27 to have a full week free to decide what schools he likes, and to give UA an opportunity to go in one week later with eyes and ears open and see if this is a program."

Neal is a two-time Gatorade State Player of the Year and a Parade All-American who has visited Notre Dame and Ohio State.

The Scout.com recruiting service lists the 5-foot-9-inch, 175-pound Neal as a four-star recruit and the fifth-best cornerback prospect in the nation. Arizona figures to recruit Neal as a wide receiver.

More recruiting

A flurry of verbal commitment moves could end up helping Arizona's chances with New Jersey quarterback Devin Fuller.

Fuller spent last weekend visiting UCLA, which got a commitment Tuesday from Fort Worth star T.J. Millweard. Fuller was considering a visit to Notre Dame, which signed Gunner Kiel, the nation's top quarterback prospect.

Fuller will visit Rutgers this weekend. NCAA rules allow him to take one more trip, likely either to Arizona or Baylor.

Fuller, a star at Old Tappan High School and a U.S. Army All-American, threw for 2,145 yards and 20 TDs and rushed for 1,156 yards and 16 TDs last fall. Scout.com lists him as a four-star recruit.

Rodriguez rounds out staff

Rodriguez has added a pair of graduate assistants to his staff, rounding out a staff that's been in flux since mid-November. Cory Zirbel will work with the offense, and Matt Caponi will assist on defense.

Caponi spent the 2011 season at Pitt, where he worked with UA assistants Tony Dews, Tony Gibson, Calvin Magee and Spencer Leftwich; before that, he served three seasons as the defensive coordinator at Washington and Jefferson College. Caponi won three Division III national championships (2000, 2001, 2002) as a player at small-college power Mount Union.

Zirbel played at Michigan, and later served as a student assistant there under Rodriguez. Additionally, the UA has added Billy Kerlawich as an operations coordinator. Kerlawich's father, Bill, is the Wildcats' defensive line coach.

Senior bowl-bound

Wide receiver Juron Criner has accepted an invitation to play in the Senior Bowl, Jan. 28 in Mobile, Ala. He will team up with UA quarterback Nick Foles on the South team.

"Juron is a big target and a guy who can really stretch the field," Senior Bowl President and CEO Steve Hale said.

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Pac-12 South football standings

Team W L T PCT
Arizona 5 1 0 0.833
Utah 5 1 0 0.833
USC 5 2 0 0.714
ASU 5 1 0 0.833
UCLA 5 2 0 0.714
Colorado 3 4 0 0.429

Pac-12 North football standings

Team W L T PCT
Oregon 7 1 0 0.875
Oregon State 4 2 0 0.667
Stanford 4 3 0 0.571
Washington 5 2 0 0.714
Washington State 2 5 0 0.286
Cal 4 4 0 0.500
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