Greg Byrne's Wildcat Wednesday
By: Arizona Athletics
Release: August 15, 2013
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It was with great sadness that we all learned this week about our friend Dave Sitton passing away. 

When I first came to Tucson, I remember meeting Dave at the “One More Victory, Ara!” event at La Paloma.  About a month later after having attended what seemed like 10 other events I went up to Dave and asked him if there was anyone else in Tucson who emceed events. He seemed to be everywhere with a contagious smile and a passion for whatever he was involved with. 

He loved life, he loved our university, he loved southern Arizona and he loved the people he worked with in all of his endeavors including coaching rugby, broadcasting, and the countless organizations he supported. You couldn’t help but be positively impacted by him every time your paths would cross. 

A public Celebration of Life will be held this Sunday at the McKale Center at 6 p.m. Parking will be free in all lots near the McKale Center. Doors open at 5:30 p.m. and everyone is welcome to attend. For those who can’t attend there will be a live stream on 

We will miss you Dave!  You will always be a great Wildcat!  


Three years ago we set out to increase our membership in the Wildcat Club, establishing an aggressive goal of 12,000 members by June 2013.  When we set the goal, we had 7,194 Wildcat Club members and wanted to increase our donor base so that we could continue to provide the best opportunities for our student-athletes.  We are so appreciative of the individuals who responded to our call and made a tax-deductible donation to Arizona Athletics.  

After calculating our final membership numbers, we found that we fell short of our goal and closed the 2012-2013 fiscal year with 10,417 Wildcat Club members.  Although we didn’t reach our goal of 12,000, we achieved our second highest membership total in history. We want to thank everyone who joined the Wildcat Movement for helping us reach this mark.  We’re proud of the progress we have made in the past three years and will continue to share our message and ask individuals who believe in what we do as a department to support our cause.  Thanks for being a part of the Wildcat Movement and please encourage others to get involved. Click here for more information.


Just a quick reminder to join us this Saturday for Meet the Team at Arizona Stadium. The fun starts at 4:30 p.m. with a north end zone lower bowl select-a-seat. Our ticket sales staff will be on hand all evening to assist those looking to purchase 2013 season tickets. Admission and parking are free and you can enter the stadium through Gate 2. The 
football team will take the field for a scrimmage at 6 p.m. and will sign autographs for one hour after the scrimmage. We encourage you to visit the new north end zone seating areas to watch the scrimmage (seating is limited and first come, first serve). The new concession stands and restrooms will be open. Seating will also be available in the east stands. The west stands and south end zone will be closed as we complete preparations for the home opener on Friday, Aug. 30. Click here for more information.   


Two weeks ago, the university announced plans to boost mobile voice and data coverage across campus thanks to a new partnership with Boingo Wireless. Arizona Stadium is part of phase one of the new initiatives, which places cell antennas in strategic locations across campus, with McKale Center included in phase two. There is zero cost to the university, as two (yet to be named) carriers will cover all expenses. This new service should greatly enhance the  ability to send and receive texts and interact with social media apps such as FacebookTwitter and Instagram, for anyone in attendance at the stadium. 

It’s important to clarify  that we are in the early stages of installation for the antennas at Arizona Stadium. So, while we’re hopeful installation might be completed ahead of schedule, the new service will not be fully available until later in the season. In a separate project, WiFi is also going to be added to select areas of the stadium. (WiFi is available in the Club level.) We’re committed to WiFi for the long-term and will keep everyone posted as new information becomes available. Thank you for your patience as we continue to work to give you the best experience possible at all of our venues.  


Head coach Dave Rubio and the volleyball team began preparations for the upcoming season with the start of official practice this past weekend. The Wildcats are looking to improve on a 16-15 record from last season in which the team was one of the youngest in the country. The Cats return 10 letterwinners from last year’s squad, while also adding eight talented newcomers to the group. Junior Madi Kingdon is quickly rising up the Arizona record books after two highly productive seasons. She was recently named to the first ever Pac-12 Preseason All-Conference Team. Fans can meet the volleyball team at the Football Meet the Team event on Saturday.  They will be signing autographs on the north concourse from 6 p.m. to 7 p.m. Fans can also see the Wildcats in action for the first time during the annual Red-Blue Scrimmage on Saturday, Aug. 24 at 2 p.m. inside McKale Center. Admission is free. For season ticket information, click here.


I appreciate your patience while we worked diligently to bring back our gameday bus service for the 2013 season. I’m happy to let you know that through a partnership with Sun Tran, we will be providing the Arizona Gameday Charter this season. We will continue to utilize Hi Corbett Field as a pick-up location, with a second location being added at the park and ride lot at Arizona Pavilions at Cortaro and I-10. Charters will drop off on 6th Street, just south of the stadium.  More information will be released this week and we’ll post all the details on when available. 


While I’m on gameday transportation, please don’t forget that the Cat Cruiser is available this season for our Phoenix-area fans to get a ride to every home football game. Ride the spirited and convenient Cat Cruiser from the Valley to the gates of Arizona Stadium. Reserve your seat online at the Bon Voyage Travel website


It’s been quite an offseason for some our baseball players who have been competing in summer leagues all across the nation. Shortstop Kevin Newman followed up his Freshman All-American season with the Wildcats by starring for the Falmouth Commodores in the Cape Cod Baseball League. Kevin turned a lot of heads in the prestigious summer league as he was named an all-star and became the first freshman in the history of the league to win the batting title. His .375 batting average would be impressive at any level, but is especially notable since wood bats are used in the Cape Cod Baseball League. Not to be overshadowed, pitcher Mathew Troupe was dominant as the closer for the Orleans Firebirds as he led the league with 11 saves and posted a 1.35 earned run average and 32 strikeouts over 20 innings pitched. He, too, was named a Cape Cod All-Star. Meanwhile, in the Alaska Baseball League, a pair of freshman hurlers who garnered all-league honors helped the Alaska Goldpanners win the league championship. Lefty Cody Moffett notched a 2-0 record and four saves to go with his 0.76 ERA. Right-hander Nathan Bannister went 6-0 over seven starts, highlighted by a 2.25 ERA and 32 strikeouts against only three walks in 44 innings. Head coach Andy Lopez will welcome all of his returning players and a highly-talented freshman class to school in a couple weeks. Indeed, expectations will again be high for the four-time national champions on the diamond. 


Due to recent media attention surrounding autographs it is a good time to remind everyone of the Arizona Athletics policy for fans and student-athletes. NCAA rules state that a current student-athlete can lose their future collegiate eligibility if their name, picture, autograph, or likeness is sold. The rules further state that the University of Arizona, on behalf of our student-athletes, must take whatever steps are necessary to prevent this from happening. Some fans are under the mistaken impression that if the student-athlete is not paid for the autograph, then it is permissible to sell it. That is not true! The sale of the autographed item is prohibited and can cause the student-athlete to lose their collegiate eligibility.

The easiest way to comply with this rule is to not allow our current student-athletes to sign autographs at any time. However, we feel that decision would be unfair to the true University of Arizona fan who treasures the autographed item because of its connection to the program, rather than its monetary value. We ask our student-athletes to try and personalize each item and also to limit signing to no more than two items per fan.

If you receive an autographed item it is with the mutual understanding that the item received will never be sold or traded for anything of value as long as any autograph on that item represents a student-athlete currently competing for the University of Arizona. Your cooperation in protecting our student-athletes is greatly appreciated! 


Continue to do what you can to help Arizona Athletics and:

    1.   Join the Wildcat Movement
    2.   Buy Season Tickets
    3.   Wear the Colors (Especially on Friday)
    4.   Get Others to do the Same

Bear Down with Pride,

Greg Byrne
Vice President for Athletics
The University of Arizona

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