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WILDCATS REBORN: A look at the University of Arizona football program

Published: Sep. 20, 2021 at 9:48 AM MST
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TUCSON, Ariz. (KOLD News 13) - When Jedd Fisch was hired as Arizona’s new football coach there were plenty of questions, not the least of which was, why?

Why give the job to a guy with no head coaching experience? Why entrust the responsibility of reviving Wildcat football to a guy whose longest-held coaching position lasted four years.

A guy whose resume was chock-full of NFL and college stops over the course of two decades.

Most importantly, after all the talk of hiring someone who cared deeply about the University of Arizona, why bring on a man who seemingly had little to no ties to the program?

Upon his introduction, Fisch emphasized a commitment to building a program fan would be proud to support.

He added Wildcat legends Ricky Hunley and Chuck Cecil to his coaching staff and rounded the roster out of both professional and college pedigree.

Under the motto “It’s Personal,” Fisch built a Wildcat buzz locally, regionally and nationally.

Whether it was through gimmicks (see Rob Gronkowski’s helicopter football catch below) or education (see We Educate Wednesdays), Fisch brought life back to Arizona Stadium – at least in the preseason.

Whether he can sustain that heartbeat has yet to be determined.

Three games in and, what should have been clear from the beginning, is now obvious. Rebuilding a football program takes more than water balloon fights with fans and DJs blasting music in the stands.

It also takes more than three weeks.

Over the last two months, Damien Alameda and Bailey O’Carroll dove into Fisch’s new program to find out more about the people he works closest with.

Along the way, we learned about football. We learned about family. We learned about trash.

Damien and Bailey produced a sports special titled “Wildcats Reborn.” The show debuted Sunday night but over the next few days, we will release the individual stories we thought needed to be told.

You can watch the entire special at the top of this page or on our OTT apps for Roku, FireTV and AppleTV.

Copyright 2021 KOLD News 13. All rights reserved.