Noah Fifita threw for a school-record 527 yards and five touchdowns, Michael Wiley scored three times and No. 16 Arizona put an emphatic end to the Pac-12 era of the Territorial Cup rivalry with a 59-23 rout over Arizona State on Saturday.
The Wildcats (9-3, 7-2 Pac-12, No. 15 CFP) were humiliated 70-7 by Arizona State two years ago, the wound salted by a mocking billboard erected by Sun Devils’ fans along Interstate 10 between Tempe and Tucson.
Arizona fans may want to put up a billboard of their own after the embarrassment shifted north in the final game before the rivals head to the Big 12 next year.
Wiley celebrates with Territorial Cup
The Wildcats took no pity on the injury-riddled Sun Devils (3-9, 2-7), racking up 619 yards of offense. Tetairoa McMillan had a Territorial Cup-record 266 yards and a touchdown on 11 catches. Jacob Cowing had nine catches for 157 yards.
Fifita finished 30 of 41 to break Anu Solomon’s school record of 520 yards passing against California in 2014.
Arizona also intercepted Jaden Rashada twice both set up touchdowns to complete its first six-game winning streak since 1998. Rashada threw for 82 yards and a touchdown on 10-of-22 passing in his first game since Sept. 9 nowhere close to good enough the way the Wildcats were rolling.
Arizona got some relief last season, ending Arizona State’s five-game Territorial Cup winning streak with a three-point home win. The Wildcats wanted even more in their return to Tempe and got it, hitting chunk plays in the passing game to set up short touchdowns while racing off to a 38-7 halftime lead.
Tanner McLachlan scored on a 3-yard, side-armed pass from Fifita. Jonah Coleman burst up the middle for a 4-yard touchdown. Wiley scored on runs of 22 and 1 yards.
All four touchdowns were set up by passing plays of 15 or more yards to McMillan or Cowing.
Fifita had the most passing yards by an Arizona quarterback in Territorial Cup history by halftime, hitting the 357-yard mark on a 22-yard TD pass to Wiley.
Arizona State: The undermanned Sun Devils were no match for the surging Wildcats to cap their first season under coach Kenny Dillingham with an embarrassing loss.
Arizona: The Wildcats lost their bid to play Washington in the Pac-12 title game with No. 6 Oregons win over No. 15 Oregon State Friday night. A rout over their rival is a nice way to shake it off.
Arizona: Will play in its first bowl game since 2017.
Arizona State: The Sun Devils will have several key players back next year, including Rashada, Skattebo and Conyers. Arizona State’s 2024 recruiting class is No. 55 nationally, according to the 247 Sports composite.
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