Editor’s note: This story first appeared Sunday as an
exclusive for our print readers.
Kish has seen trouble before
If you kick around college football long enough, and for UA
co-defensive coordinator Tim Kish “long enough” is 33 years, you
inevitably run into trouble.
“Trouble” is Oregon, averaging 542 yards and 50.7 points per
game, coming off some serious laboratory time during bye week.
“You’re going to assume they’ll come up with something in the
open week, something we haven’t seen yet,” Kish said Wednesday.
“That’ll be the chess game we play up there.”
If Oregon coach Chip Kelly comes up with anything new, it might
be illegal. What else is there?
A film crew from ESPN shadowed Kish at his office and on the
practice field Wednesday and Thursday. But it wasn’t there in
attempt to get a deer-in-the-headlights story a week before a
defensive coach played the Ducks.
Because Kish coached at Army from 1984 to 1991, ESPN is
producing a feature about military school coaching. It is from his
Army experience that Kish has a perspective that goes beyond one
game against the Oregon Ducks.
In 1984, Army gave up six touchdown passes to the latest
greatest thing in college football, Boston College quarterback Doug
Flutie, losing 45-31. It appeared that Army’s chance to play in its
first-ever bowl game would be lost.
But Army responded after that game, rallying to beat Montana,
upsetting Navy for the first time in seven years, and then stunning
Michigan State in the Cherry Bowl.
The point is: You never know.
In the last two years Arizona has outgained the Ducks 968-963,
while the Wildcats have scored a Pac-10-high 120 points against
Oregon over the last three years. In other words, Arizona hasn’t
been awed by the Ducks and isn’t likely to be Friday night.
“It’s exciting right now,” said Kish. “We played without much
emotion and energy the last two games. We need to get back out
there and do the kinds of things that had us successful early this
Protests over replay officials misguided
The Pac-10 typically hires three men, most of them former Pac-10
football officials, to work as TV replay officials for each game.
At Arizona, that crew has been retired Pac-10 referees Jim
Fogltance, Bobby Rauh and Jerry Gastellum.
All live in Tucson. That’s the same across the conference. The
TV replay officials at Washington’s Husky Stadium are from the
Seattle metro area. Those at UCLA games are from the greater Los
Angeles area. And so on.
But now, in the Internet age, anonymous voices have created such
a fuss, protesting that these men apparently can’t be trusted.
That’s hogwash. Because Oregon State and ASU fans discovered that
Fogltance is a UA grad, he will not be allowed to work the UA-ASU
game on Dec. 2.
As an on-field official, Fogltance worked in every Pac-10
stadium, including Arizona Stadium, dozens of times for more than
25 years. The Pac-10 trusted these men and were never betrayed.
That’s how grown-ups do it.
Here are some data for paranoid Sun Devils fans: Fogltance
worked eight UA-ASU games (1989, 1991, 2002, 2005, 2006, 2007,
2008, 2009). There was no conspiracy. The Sun Devils won five of
those eight games.
What’s more, Fogltance was the back judge at the 1987 Rose Bowl
game, also won by ASU. He was the head referee at the 1996,
double-overtime game in which the Sun Devils beat USC to propel ASU
to a second Rose Bowl.
Fogltance’s reputation in college football is clean and
distinguished. The message board knotheads are way off base on this
Amphi’s Friedli to return; again faces rebuilding
After closing the season with an 11-2 record in the state
quarterfinals Friday, and a state-record 328 coaching victories,
Amphi’s Vern Friedli announced Saturday that he will return for the
2011 season. It will be another rebuilding job by Friedli, who
loses the core of a team that won 19 games the last two seasons. â€¦
With 31 touchdown passes, Ironwood Ridge quarterback Tyler D’Amore
is likely the leader as the Player of the Year in Southern Arizona
football. The Nighthawks will play in the state semifinals Dec. 3
and D’Amore and his top two receivers, Trevor Wesley and Austin
Ballard, and junior running back Mitch Fischer, who has gained
1,448 yards, are probably the most explosive foursome remaining. â€¦
A good runner-up choice as Player of the Year would be Catalina
Foothills’ back Shawn Kobylinski, who played both ways and,
according to coach Scott Cortese “doesn’t come off the field.” â€¦
Jeff Green, who has been the head football coach at Rincon and
Tucson high schools, and a valued assistant at the UA, Sabino and
now at Pima College, is tackling a new challenge at 65. Green will
be the offensive coordinator of the Marburg (Germany) Mercenaries
in the European pro football league. He begins in March. â€¦ At the
NCAA cross country championships Monday in Terre Haute, Ind., look
for James Li’s UA women’s team to finish in the top 10, and for UA
junior standout Stephen Sambu to challenge for the men’s national
title. Flowing Wells grad Tara Erdmann, a junior at Loyola
Marymount, is projected to finish in the top 10 in the women’s
Byrne not discussing MSU’s tie to Newton
UA athletic director Greg Byrne won’t respond publicly to
questions about Mississippi State’s involvement, or lack of such,
in allegations that former MSU recruit Cam Newton asked for money
before he signed with Auburn. Byrne, the former MSU athletic
director, met with UA president Robert Shelton and told him what he
knew about Newton’s MSU connections a week before the story got
legs nationally. You should know this about Byrne and his diligence
pertaining to rules: He insists that Bill Morgan, the UA’s director
of compliance, accompanies the Wildcats on all football and some
basketball road trips. Why? It’s good to have a compliance officer
in the hotel lobby, if nothing else, to act as a deterrent and to
remind UA athletes that the school is serious about obeying the
rules. â€¦ On a radio podcast with Tucsonan Matt Minkus
(radioExiles.com) last week, Lute Olson called the NCAA’s recent
investigation of the UA basketball program “a farce.” School
officials must have been aghast. After its basketball program was
caught cheating for the second time in 11 years, the UA was
fortunate to escape a more severe punishment, probably because it
fully cooperated and established a transparency sought by the NCAA.
â€¦ With the softball retirement of Jennie Finch, the Chicago Bandits
of the National Pro Fastpitch league acted quickly to replace their
marquee attraction. Last week, the Bandits acquired ex-UA pitcher
Taryne Mowatt. â€¦ In his first three college basketball games,
playing for the Providence Friars, Palo Verde grad Bryce Cotton has
been productive. The slashing guard is averaging nine points and
19.7 minutes, including a 15-point debut against Dartmouth.
Rincon grad reaches last phase of PGA
With three birdies in his last five holes Saturday,
Rincon/University grad Michael Thompson survived the four-day PGA
Tour Qualifying School in Brooksville, Fla., and advanced to the
final stage next month. Thompson had rounds of 73-72-68-68. â€¦ Not
so fortunate was Tucsonan Ronnie Black, who earned $445,058 on the
Champions Tour this year, No. 41 overall, but was forced to return
to the Champions version of Q-School. He missed by five strokes. â€¦
Also eliminated at the second stage were Tucson-affiliated golfers
David McDaniel, Ryan Hietala, Ted Purdy, Robert Gamez, Nate
Lashley, Rich Barcelo and Willie Wood. â€¦ Tucson High grad Christine
Clark has already made an impact on Harvard’s women’s basketball
team. She has averaged 10 points and 23 minutes in Harvard’s first
two games of the year. Clark joined a team with all 12 players
returning from last year’s 20-9 squad. â€¦ UA women’s basketball
coach Niya Butts, who has quickly rebuilt the Wildcats into a
potential NCAA tournament team, has found out how difficult the
Pac-10 can be. When letters of intent were signed this month, ASU,
UCLA, USC, Cal and Stanford combined to sign 11 of the nation’s Top
50 prospects, according to ESPN. Arizona’s four recruits were not
listed by ESPN, although 6-foot-5-inch Aley Rohde of Phoenix
Pinnacle High is probably, with UA sophomore guard Davellyn Whyte,
as highly regarded as any Arizona women’s basketball signee since
Shawntinice Polk in 2002. It’s conceivable that Butts’ third UA
team could be 9-2 entering Pac-10 play on New Year’s Eve. â€¦ And did
you realize that the McKale Center crowd of 12,142 to watch Sean
Miller’s team play Idaho State last Sunday was the smallest home
gathering in Tucson since a January 1986 game against Cal (10,237)?
Don’t put an ASU-type canvas over those empty Zona Zoo seats
MY TWO CENTS
Match Play considering four-day event with 18-hole
The PGA Tour is considering changing the format of the
WGC-Accenture Match Play Championship, which is encouraging news
for Southern Arizona golf fans.
The Tour players’ policy committee and the Championship
Management Group have discussed cutting Sunday’s championship
finale from 36 to 18 holes, which would be a better fit for
television. It has also considered making it a four-day event,
beginning Thursday instead of Wednesday.
That would be a fan-friendly move, keeping more players in
action on Saturday and Sunday instead of the heavily front-loaded
“It’s being discussed,” said Wade Dunagan, executive director of
the Ritz-Carlton Golf Club event. “No decision has been made
Many significant decisions remain for the Match Play
Championship. Accenture has yet to commit to the Ritz-Carlton for
2012 or beyond. And the Wednesday start, with a soft Sunday finish,
isn’t wildly popular.
We’re about to find out how sacred the WGC and PGA Tour people
hold the notion that a 36-hole showdown between two golfers is more
important than ticket sales and TV ratings.