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UA cheerleaders, students featured on MTVU

Djamila Grossman/Arizona Daily Wildcat
MTVU Associate Producer Allan Clary gets shots of the UA cheerleaders Saturday on the UA Mall. The college network of MTV is producing a feature on tailgating at six colleges across the country.
By Djamila Grossman
Arizona Daily Wildcat
Monday, October 24, 2005
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Despite the Wildcat defeat at Saturday's football game, an MTV-University camera crew said they were impressed with the amount of UA student spirit they saw after filming the campus over the weekend.

The college network of the mother ship MTV focused on the UA cheerleaders before and during the game, and also interviewed students and fans at the pregame tailgating party.

The "tailgating tour" focuses on five other college campuses nationwide in addition to the UA and is "about everything that goes into football but the football," said video jockey George Oliphant at the game.

Throughout the entire game the cameramen never filmed the action on the field, but rather they focused on the jumping cheerleaders, fans screaming with their arms in the air and students jingling their keys above their heads at every kickoff.

When the Wildcats were 21 points behind Oregon at the time of the interview, Oliphant said he was impressed with the team spirit of the fans, who he said were nowhere close to losing faith in their team.

MTV spokesman David French agreed and said the reason MTVU picked the UA campus was because "the UA has a tremendous fan base and loyal fans."

Oliphant said even though he and his crew of two producers knew all about the basketball team, the campus itself exceeded his expectations.

"It's so beautiful here, everyone is so friendly and outgoing," Oliphant said. "They got it going on."

Team leader of the cheerleaders, Ryan Littleton, said the crew interviewed them Friday, then came to his house for dinner and joined them at Saturday's tailgate party and game.

"It was really cool, we had a great time," Littleton said.

While the crew contacted the cheerleaders for the feature, other students attempted to get airtime by calling MTVU themselves.

David Carson, a communication senior, said he called the network because he had no doubt they would film him, his friends and his party bus because they are "the coolest," and they tailgate for every game.

"When you walk around (the tailgate party), ours is the funnest, one-of-a-kind deal," Carson said. "It's hard-core UA pride, we come out, have a good time and show support for the team."

Carson said he was surprised how nice and uncomplicated working with the MTVU crew was, and he had fun hanging out with them.

"They are really down to earth. I expected this producer-type guy, but they are very easy to work with," Carson said.

But even for MTVU it is not easy to get permission to film on campus, and they had to follow certain rules to be allowed to air the material. Paul Allvin, associate vice president of communications, said the crew had to promise in writing they would not interfere with the campus life and would not film any classes.

In order to film the tailgate party, the crew was not permitted to broadcast "drinking, indecent exposure or behavior," Allvin said, and even though the UA is a public campus, officials have the ability to restrict certain actions.

The measure was apparent when a member of the crew notoriously turned his camera off or away when people engaged in drinking.

"We can't really film this," said Associate Producer Allan Clary.

MTVU was launched in January 2004 and reaches 6.8 million college students on 730 campuses across the country, French said.

The tailgating show will broadcast in early November on MTVU and, French said.

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