Arizona Wildcats

Arizona Wildcats - History

HOME ~ College Football History




Arizona Football History

Drop-kicker/receiver Harold "Nosey" McClellan leads the nation in scoring with 124 points. Wildcats finish the regular season 7-1, are invited to UA's first bowl game, the East-West Christmas Classic in San Diego, to play powerhouse Centre College of Kentucky.

October 18, 1926
UA quarterback
Arizona Football Historyand student body president John "Button" Salmon dies from injuries sustained in a car wreck. His final words, spoken to coach "Pop" McKale, are: "Tell them.....tell the team to Bear Down." Soon thereafter, the UA student body adopts "Bear Down" as the school's athletic motto.

October 12,1929
Arizona Stadium opens. In the official stadium dedication game, Arizona beats Cal Tech 35-0.

Bill "The Eel" Hargis becomes the first Wildcat to rush for 1,000 yards in a season.

Coach Gerald "Tex" Oliver's "Blue Brigade" plays an expanded, more nationwide schedule, compiles a record of 31-11-4, and produces UA's first All-Americans: halfback Ted Bland (1935), fullback Walt Nielson (1937), and center Tom Greenfield (1938). The team's 1938 record of 8-2 was a school best to date.

UA leads the nation in passing offense, and end Hank "Birdlegs" Stanton leads the nation in pass receiving and is named All-America.

Quarterback Fred W. Enke leads the nation in total offense.

In its first televised game, broadcast statewide, UA beats Arizona State 35-0.

In his first game as starting halfback, sophomore Art Luppino rushes for 228 yards on only six carries and scores 32 points. He goes on to lead the nation in rushing, scoring, all-purpose running, and kickoff returns.

Art Luppino becomes the first player in NCAA history to lead the nation in rushing twice. He also ties for the national title in all-purpose running and is third in scoring.

Dave "The Roadrunner" Hibbert leads the nation in pass receiving.

Coached by Jim LaRue and led by quarterback Eddie Wilson and "Touchdown Twins" Bobby Lee "The General" Thompson and "Jackrabbit" Joe Hernandez, Arizona compiles a record of 8-1-1, UA's best to date, and breaks into the National Top 20 for the first time.

Coach Jim Young's Wildcats compile back-to-back 9-2 seasons, UA's first nine-win campaigns. Receiver Theopolis "T" Bell is named All-America and fullback Jim Upchurch becomes the second Wildcat to rush for 1,000 yards for two consecutive seasons.

Arizona enters the Pacific-10 Conference.

Tom Tunnicliffe shatters UA career records for passing and total offense.

Linebacker Ricky Hunley becomes UA's first consensus All-American, an honor he receives two consecutive years.

Place-kicker Max Zendejas breaks Art Luppino's career scoring record.

Coached by Larry Smith and led by 1,000yd. rusher David Adams, Arizona finishes 9-3, defeating North Carolina in the Aloha Bowl.

Defensive back Chuck Cecil receives consensus All-America, Academic All-America, and NCAA Top Six honors.

All-American Darryll Lewis wins the Jim Thorpe Award as the nation's best defensive back.

Ontiwaun Carter breaks Art Luppino's career rushing record.

Arizona's "Desert Swarm"defense is born. UA leads the nation in scoring defense and nose guard Rob Waldrop is a consensus All-American.

"Desert Swarm" leads the nation in rushing defense and achieves its first 10-victory season, defeating Miami 29-0 in the Fiesta Bowl. Rob Waldrop is named UPI Lineman of the Year, FWAA Outstanding Defensive Player, Outland Trophy winner, and unanimous All-American.

Steve McLaughlin wins the Lou Groza Award as the nation's best place-kicker.

Defensive lineman Tedy Bruschi is named Unanimous All-America.

Center Wayne Wyatt earns National Football Foundation/Hall of Fame Scholar-Athlete honors and is UA's 13th football Academic All-American


Former linebacker Ricky Hunley becomes UA's first College Football Hall of Fame inductee.

Arizona wins 12 games, beats Nebraska 23-20 in the Holiday Bowl and finishes ranked number four in the country, its highest ranking ever. Consensus All-America Chris McAllister wins the Tatupu Award as the nation's best special teams player.

Former coach Jim Young becomes UA's first coach inducted into the College Football Hall of Fame.

Home Page