The Student News Site of University of Arizona

The Daily Wildcat

66° Tucson, AZ

The Daily Wildcat

The Daily Wildcat


Arizona’s ‘Ooh Aah Man’ is in danger of losing his home
Courtesy of

One of the UA’s most beloved athletic figures is in danger of losing his home after 33 years of service to Wildcat basketball, football and baseball fans.

Joe Cavaleri brought smiles to the faces of countless Arizona fans as the “Ooh Aah Man,” entering basketball games to the delight of students and families. He would strip down to his undershirt and short shorts, demanding fans to chant and cheer. The former “Ooh Aah Man,” is behind six months on his mortgage and unless he receives $3,500 by this month, he will be evicted along with his four children, who have lived with him since Cavaleri and his wife divorced five years ago.

“It really sucks I am going to lose the house I spent the last 26 years of my life in,” Cavaleri told “It is a shame because if I collected a dollar from everyone who has ever cheered with me, I could pay off my house and my car right now.”

The athletic department told Cavaleri last season that he needed to retire his three decade-long tradition, as his Parkinson’s disease was limiting his mobility.

The phenomenon that became the “Ooh Aah Man,” began at a UA baseball game in 1979 when, to inspire enthusiasm in those sitting near him on the third base line, Cavaleri started a chant that, by the end of the game, took over the entire stadium.

In 2010, Cavaleri, who was already on disability from a car accident 12 years ago, was diagnosed with Parkinson’s disease, beginning his struggle to walk and ending his tenure at Arizona athletic events.

More to Discover
Activate Search