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The Daily Wildcat

The Daily Wildcat


    Former Wildcat dies unexpectedly

    William Arthur Wacholz Jr., a 2008 graduate of the University of Arizona and a member of the Wildcat football team, died suddenly in his sleep last week.

    “”Bill,”” as he was known to his friends and teammates, was a back-up lineman who had left the team in his final season after learning he had diabetes.

    To his teammates, Wacholz, 6-foot-6-inches, 310 pounds, was a reserved character but when he opened up, “”you’d just have a Bill moment and he’d get you laughing,”” former teammate Joe Longacre said.

    “”When you look at him, he’s just intimidating,”” added Longacre, an offensive guard from Katy, Texas, who graduated with Wacholz. “”He’s just a big guy, very kind of scary looking, and he was just genuinely nice.””

    On the football field, Wacholz – the son of Connie and Bill Wacholz – was never a starter and only played in 17 games. However, his effort was never questioned by his teammates.

    “”You never had to worry about Bill not trying,”” Longacre said. “”You can’t fault a guy like that; you wish everybody had that work ethic.””

    Born Dec. 6, 1985, the Rancho Bernardo High School graduate’s death came as a shock to friends, teammates and family.

    “”You just couldn’t help but think, ‘Wow, sometimes you take things for granted and you have to realize every day is a gift; just like that you’re here and you’re gone,”” Longacre said. “”That’s kind of a hard thing to wrap your mind around.””

    Wacholz’s funeral will be held today in San Diego, Calif.

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