June 9, 2010
HOW ABOUT THOSE CATS
Arizona's softball team yesterday completed a remarkable journey with its 22nd trip to the Women's College World Series and a tough loss to UCLA in the championship series to finish No. 2 in the country. I know head coach Mike Candrea is never happy with second place, but all of us are proud of the Wildcats and their showing. It's difficult to get to the WCWS, much less contend for the NCAA title in the showdown series, especially with such a young team. Next year should be an exciting year.
CONFERENCE MEETINGS WRAP-UP
Senior Associate Director of Athletics Rocky LaRose and I headed out to Oklahoma City Monday morning, after getting back from the Pac-10 meetings in San Francisco Sunday afternoon. The meetings were very interesting as we had the opportunity to spend time with the Pac-10 staff, institutional CEOs, Faculty Reps and our peer ADs and Senior Women’s Administrators. At this point, I cannot go into a lot of detail, but we are excited about what may be ahead. Also, once things settle down we will do our best to communicate with you and give you any insight that would be appropriate.
WILDCAT CLUB MEMBERSHIP
The end of our fiscal year, June 30th, is only three weeks away. In order to be an active member of the Wildcat Club – the fundraising arm of Arizona Athletics – for the 2010-11 season and receive all the benefits of Wildcat Club membership, Arizona fans need to turn in their donations before July 1st. To make a tax-deductible contribution and help our student-athletes succeed on and off the field, simply call 520-621-CLUB (2582) or click HERE. Every member counts!
SERVING THE COMMUNITY
We had 311 student-athletes from each of our sports involved in 1,799 hours of community service during the last school year -- a remarkable demonstration of support and commitment by UA sports teams. Our gymnastics team earned the top nod for averaging nearly 14 hours per athlete in interactive appearances with youth, speaking appearances and other public gatherings to help support our community by reaching out to others. Two individuals, Hanna Henson and Brian MacArthur of the track and field teams, were the leading student-athletes with 53 and 33 hours, respectively. Hats off to them and to all who participated! Good things come from such dedication.
THE RULES ARE THE RULES...
I heard from a few Wildcat supporters who were distraught about some umpiring at the Women's College World Series last week, and as a fan of Arizona Softball I can understand their concern. But the bottom line is our pride in the team and its 22nd trip to the WCWS and the manner with which our coaches and student-athletes handled themselves. As we know, officiating is part of the game, and is a tough job for the people making the calls. Officials are regularly reviewed. Coaches associations, conference offices and the NCAA continually address issues during the season and in the offseasons.
Arizona Baseball’s season came to an end last weekend after losing to TCU and Baylor at the NCAA Regional in Fort Worth, Texas. We're proud of the young Wildcat Baseball squad's showing and we look forward to the bright future ahead for Coach Lopez’s team.
SPEAKING OF BASEBALL...
I received a very positive note from the staff at the hotel where the baseball team stayed in Fort Worth. It commended our team for its courtesy and well-mannered stay -- going as far as to say it was hands-down the best sports team that ever stayed there (or anywhere this representative has worked). This is the kind of thing we can point to when emphasizing how we all need to pay attention to how we represent the University of Arizona. A few moments like this can go a very long way in spreading the word that we're a first-class athletics department.
ACADEMIC PROGRESS RATE
This week, the NCAA released the latest APR data and we're encouraged by the progress the University of Arizona is making. A few single-year elements for two sports show considerable room for improvement, but the multi-year APR numbers show that the UA's commitment to the scholastic health of our student-athletes is working.
GOOD LUCK TO TRACK AND FIELD
We'll be sending a sizeable contingent of student-athletes to the NCAA Track and Field Championships -- 11 individuals and one relay -- that get under way today in Eugene, Ore. You can check the progress of the meet on the NCAA web site. Go Cats!
WEARING THE COLORS
I was in the San Francisco airport on Sunday and commented on my Facebook page that I saw three individuals wearing UA clothing in the security line and did not see any other schools' clothing. Sharing that fact led to a lot of comments from my Facebook friends right after posting it. There were a lot of good ones but I thought I would share this one from Jim Fosmoe: “Attended a Cincinnati Reds @ Washington Nationals game today. Clothing Count: One blue UA baseball hat and one Nike ‘Arizona Wildcats Volleyball’ T-Shirt in the crowd.” Glad to hear of people wearing the colors all over the place. Don’t forget Wildcat Friday this week, encourage others to get involved.
Director of Athletics
University of Arizona