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Of Traditions and such

Arizona Summer Wildcat
July 28, 1999
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As the fall season approaches and the feeling of school pride hits the air, it's time for us to realize why we attend the University of Arizona. We are reminded of all those fantastic little idiosyncrasies that make us proud to be Wildcats.

Going to football games and checking out the weirdoes on the mall, can only amuse us so much. It is at this time of boredom that we break off into the community and wreak havoc. It is in this state, that the greatest of rivalries has been fought.

When UA plays ASU at anything, it's fierce. The culmination of the rivalry is every November, in the last regular season football game, Wildcats vs. Sun Devils!

What types of traditions abound around this football game, you ask? Anyone who has been to Tempe, can easily observe that huge gold A hovering over Sun Devil Stadium, taunting all, with a false sense of superiority.

For around fifty years, UA students have successfully messed with the symbol of ASU, as every year, Wildcats have turned that 75-foot, gold cement block into an artwork worthy of Bob Ross.

This tradition was here before we arrived here, it will continue after we are gone. But, why not leave a legacy?

Here is a first hand account.

While driving with friends through Tempe on our way home for Thanksgiving, an evil thought popped into all of our heads. What if we were to maintain that tradition of painting the sacred A?

There had always been pictures on the front page of papers, or on the local news of it painted red and blue, but could we do it?

Unprepared and unsure of the territory, we hiked through the desert, only to find eight to 10 Sun Devils napping at the base.

Kicking ourselves for not having the proper tools, we sat on the slab and pondered a plan.

Could we get around the guards? How much paint? How would we get away? These were all questions answered shortly.

The next day was Thanksgiving, and as all of the Sun Devils plumped up on turkey, we prepared. Night came quickly and this time we were ready. Armed to the teeth with paint, we donned ASU tee-shirts to maintain the ruse.

Silly Sun Devils, they didn't know what was coming.

After hanging out with the guards for a while, we retired to the top of the A to wait.

As they fell asleep, we opened the cans of paint and we were about to begin. But a spotlight from the bottom of the mountain hit us.

Our hearts began to beat fast. As it came closer, it became evident that it was a cameraman, filming the whole event. He came up to ask us how we were holding up guarding the mountain against those evil Wildcats.

The silly Phoenix news reporter fell for our trick.

Apparently, we were too loud for our own good, and as two of us were distracting the guards up front, they woke up and the mad dash began.

Our mission was left incomplete; the A was left only half painted.

Our only solace came in watching Phoenix news stations the next day, when they repeated the clip of us guarding the A.

The Sun Devils may have won that night, but we will be back next year, possibly with faces painted maroon. We will go forth, trumpeting "Go Wildcats", unless those pesky kids are guarding it again. If so, then we're Devils. We will take back the A that is rightfully ours.

May the tradition continue.