June 8, 2011
This is a reposting of the Wildcat Wednesday weekly email sent by Athletic Director Greg Byrne to all the Wildcat fans around the country. If you would like to sign up to receive the email directly please sign up here.
We took part in Pac-12 spring meetings last week in Seattle and part of the discussion was about the Pac-12 Network, and the myriad tasks and planning that will be required before this aspect of league television will be a reality. Withheld under the new TV agreement announced a month ago were a number of key games -- football and men's and women's basketball -- that make a Pac-12 Network a viable product from the onset, one that could attract more interest from potential network partners. The next major step in the formation of a network is selecting one or more partners to help build it. The primary goals are to provide a platform for more exposure for Olympic sports, delivering television for every football, men’s basketball games and an increase in women’s basketball games. We will also be able to promote our universities more broadly. It's early, but the information we're getting from Commissioner Larry Scott and others is very exciting. You'll be hearing more about this in the coming months.
PLANNING FOR THE FUTURE
We've had some questions about our 2012 football schedule, something which normally we would have at this point at least in terms of a basic framework with probable dates. Not so this year, due to the Pac-12 transformation. It will take a little longer to square away all the conflicts and come up with the basic model that can be followed year by year. There are some known factors, such as which of the 12 teams we will miss next year due to the divisional alignments, but we won't have a 2012 schedule in hand until at least the fall. Bear with us, we're as eager as the consumers to lay out our future plans at home and away.
RUNNING, THROWING AND JUMPING
Our student-athletes will be doing just that for the next several days at the NCAA Outdoor Track and Field Championship in Des Moines, Iowa, which started today. Coach Fred Harvey and his staff were pretty excited about the University of Arizona's strong preliminary performances in the West Regional and our chances to do well at Drake Stadium in Des Moines. Here's to a strong meet by all of our student-athletes. Go, Cats! And, congratulations to Coach Harvey for being named West Region coach of the year for both men's and women's track and field. Plus, throws coach Craig Carter earned an assistant coach of the year honor for his work with our women's throwers.
We came up short in trying to qualify for an NCAA Super Regional, losing to Texas A&M yesterday afternoon on the road in College Station. The team acquitted itself well in the Regional, making it to the pivotal winner-take-all game. We think it was one of the rare father-son athletics director battles (my dad, Bill, is AD at A&M), although clearly the student-athletes and coaches are the competitors. I can root a bit for the Aggies next week in Super Regional action in Tallahassee... Thanks to our Wildcats for a fine baseball season.
A DOZEN BECOMES REALITY
In less than a month Colorado and Utah officially will join our league as it becomes the Pac-12 Conference on July 1. You've read plenty about it from a competitive perspective, but here are some other facts. The league has schools from six states, the most-ever in its Pacific Coast, Association of Western States, Pac-8 and Pac-10 history... Colorado and Utah are two of three U.S. states (also Wyoming) that do not have a "natural" border -- their boundaries are defined solely by longitude and latitude... The Pac-12 added 30 more U.S. National Parks, Monuments, Sites or Scenic Trails with its addition of Utah and Colorado... The Pac-12 covers states with a total population of about 62,000,000 -- more than half of that in California (37.2 million) and only four percent of that in Utah (2.8 million)... Tucson to Seattle will remain the longest road trip in the league, with a 1,223 mile crow-flight distance...
A TRIP DOWN MEMORY LANE
Beat the heat this summer while exploring the Jim Click Hall of Champions! Stop by any weekday from 8am-5pm or Saturdays from Noon-5pm and check out numerous displays including a NBA Finals display case featuring autographed memorabilia from men’s basketball letterwinners and 1997 NCAA championship teammates Jason Terry and Mike Bibby to exhibits that showcase the various accomplishments, memorabilia and championship trophies in Arizona Athletics history! Compare the sound of a wildcat’s roar to the sound of the Wildcat fans on our interactive Wildcat Wall. Admission is free along with a complimentary Arizona Athletics poster! Go for a walk up Legacy Lane on the North side of McKale Center and visit us the Jim Click Hall of Champions.
Last week I got some great shots of your favorite Wildcat Memories. The one that struck me came from Jamie Bernstein. Jamie sent us a photo of the Pride of Arizona cheering the team on. Jamie said that was one of their favorite memories; sitting in the stands and screaming to cheer the team on. Congratulations to Jamie, you have won a $20 gift certificate to Arizona Athletics.
...Coach Dave Sitton, who as a broadcaster has been part of our institutional telecasts for decades, took the UA’s Club Rugby team to Philadelphia last weekend for the USA Sevens Collegiate Rugby Championships. The Wildcats made it to the quarterfinals...
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,
Director of Athletics
The University of Arizona