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The Daily Wildcat

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The Daily Wildcat

The Daily Wildcat

 

“Olson, four others inducted to HOF”

The Hall of Fame induction ceremony for five Arizona Wildcat sports figures was held Friday night at McKale Center.

Former men’s basketball coach Lute Olson led the 2009 class that also included baseball product J.T. Snow, LPGA golfer Lorena Ochoa, men’s golfer Chris Nallen and pole vaulter Amy Linnen.

Athletic Director Jim Livengood and senior associate athletic director Rocky LaRose each made brief statements before videos showed the accomplishments of the inductees.

“”The neat thing about this is it’s not just about tonight,”” Livengood told the inductees. “”You’re always a Hall of Fame member.””

Four of the five inductees attended the event. Ochoa was in Japan competing in an LPGA event. But without question, it was Olson who had the most lasting legacy among the 2009 group.

“”I was going to wear my blue blazer and tie,”” Olson joked. “”I wanted to see if anybody would recognize who I am.””

He went on to recognize the other four inductees and then spoke about his late wife Bobbi Olson, who “”had so much to do with establishing (the basketball) program.””

The other members of the class, like Olson, thanked the university and said the athletic program was much more like a family. Linnen called the honor the highlight of her life, while former MLB star Snow, whose only scholarship offer out of high school was to go to the UA, thanked his wife and son.

But it was Olson who gave the most nostalgic speech.

“”I haven’t cut myself lately, but I’m sure there (would) be some red and blue,”” he said. “”I will remain a Wildcat until the day I die.””

 

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