As part of the 100 Days ‘Til Kickoff 2013 series, this ranked the top five games for Arizona against each of their Pac-12 rivals. With Arizona playing playing at Washington on Saturday, we will relive the moments again.
Four of the top five games listed were played in Seattle, so another memorable game might be in store.
5. Arizona 16, Washington 13, Husky Stadium, Nov. 5, 1988
On a rainy and cold day in Seattle, Arizona place-kicker Doug Pfaff made a 22-yard field goal with five seconds remaining as the Wildcats rallied from a 10-point deficit to beat the Huskies for the first time in the program’s history.
Pfaff’s kick (his third field goal of the game) was set up by Washington quarterback Cary Conklin’s fumble with 55 seconds left. On third-and-7 from the Washington 18, blitzing UA cornerback Scott Geyer blindsided Conklin, whose fumble was recovered by nose guard Dana Wells on the Washington 5.
After Arizona tried two running plays that gained no yardage, coach Dick Tomey called on Pfaff, whose game-winning field goal gave the UA its first win over Washington in seven games between the two schools.
4. Arizona 48, Washington 41, Husky Stadium, Oct. 27, 2007
Willie Tuitama passed for a school-record 510 yards, including a 27-yard strike to Mike Thomas with 2:02 left to rally Arizona to a stunning come-from-behind win.
Tuitama directed the Wildcats 80 yards in 11 plays, capping the decisive drive with a pass to Thomas in the back of the end zone. Arizona, which trailed 41-26 with 12:32 left, scored 22 points in the fourth quarter.
Tuitama completed 38 of 51 passes and threw for five touchdowns. He topped the previous UA record of 492 yards by Jason Johnson against California in 2002. Arizona snapped a three-game losing streak and took some heat off embattled fourth-year coach Mike Stoops, who used this game as a springboard to lead the Wildcats to the Las Vegas Bowl the following season.
3. Washington 36, Arizona 33, Husky Stadium, Oct. 10, 2009
Washington’s Mason Foster intercepted a deflected pass off the foot of Arizona’s Delashaun Dean and returned the “Immaculate Interception” 37 yards for a touchdown with 2:37 left. It was one of two Washington touchdowns in the final three minutes, stunning the Wildcats, who claimed Nick Foles’ pass hit the ground.
Jake Locker pulled Washington within 33-28 on a 25-yard touchdown pass to Kavario Middleton with 2:55 left. On Arizona’s first play of the next possession, Foles tried to throw a quick screen to Dean that was thrown low and behind Dean.
The officials ruled the ball deflected off Dean’s left foot. Foster hauled it in and ran untouched for the winning touchdown. Locker then hit Jermaine Kearse on the two-point conversion to give the Huskies a three-point lead.
2. Arizona 31, Washington 28, Husky Stadium, Oct. 3, 1998
In the most incredible play by an Arizona player in the history of the program, quarterback Ortege Jenkins scored on a 9-yard run – somersaulting over three defenders into the end zone – with four seconds left for the victory. The Arizona media-relations department gave the play a name: “The Leap by the Lake”.
Arizona, winning for the first time in 10 years in Seattle, drove 80 yards for the winning score. Jenkins, who alternated with Keith Smith as Arizona’s quarterback, scored on a second-down play, going airborne and flipping over into the end zone.
On Arizona’s last-gasp drive, Jenkins was the quarterback for all but one play. On the fourth play, Smith replaced Jenkins at quarterback and passed 22 yards – to Jenkins – for a first down at the Washington 46. The 80-yard drive took 13 plays and went 2 minutes, 48 seconds.
1. Arizona 16, Washington 3, Arizona Stadium, Nov. 7, 1992
Washington was ranked No. 1 with an incredible 22-game winning streak, but anybody who followed college football closely that season knew Arizona belonged on the same field. The Desert Swarm was No. 1 in the nation against the run and No. 4 overall.
The Wildcats played conservatively on offense — using the run in 54 out of 66 offensive plays — and decisively won the ball-control and field-position battle behind their defense and the punting of Josh Miller. Reliable place-kicker Steve McLaughlin made three field goals.
Arizona took control in the fourth quarter with a drive from its 43 and scored the game’s only touchdown on George Malauulu’s 1-yard keeper with 48 seconds remaining. The only drama remaining at that time was Arizona’s crowd trying to rush the field before the game came to an end.