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The Daily Wildcat

The Daily Wildcat

 

    Five reasons why ASU is no match for Arizona

    Five reasons why ASU is no match for Arizona

    As a soon-to-be junior and the sports editor of this noble publication, I feel it is my duty to pass on the most important lesson you will learn at the UA.

    As an incoming freshman it is absolutely essential to understand this: In no way, shape or form does ASU -?or should I say Tempe Community College – measure up to Arizona in any aspect of the athletic realm.

    Sure, ASU had a good year in athletics last season, and yeah, they got the best of the Wildcats in three of the UA’s top four sports – including men’s basketball, which caused the most heartbreak for Arizona fans. But the thing to remember is that last year was one measly year.

    So congratulations ASU, enjoy your lone year of dominance, but now let me explain my top five reasons why the athletic scene at ASU, well, just plain sucks.

    1. Creepy mascot, ugly colors and small ____.

    I’d have to say the most unpleasant sight in this world is the Sun Devils’ creeper of a mascot, Sparky. Not only does he have the mischievous smile of a sex pervert, but his mustache and goatee make it real hard to tell which gender a creature of his kind might truly be attracted to. To be fair, however, he’s likely a fan of the ladies simply due to his habit of flashing the shocker sign to anyone and everyone who will look.

    If you don’t understand the shocker reference, learn more at urbandictionary.com.

    Aside from Sparky, the only thing more offensive is the sight of a flock of ASU students fully clad in their hideous maroon and “”gold”” – more like piss yellow – Sun Devil gear.

    But at least you never see much of it, even at ASU home football games, because their student section can hardly be found.

    While Arizona reserves the entire length of the east sideline and some of the south end zone for Zona Zoo, ASU’s student section spans maybe 50 yards of a stadium that holds more than 71,000. Perhaps the student officials at ASU are more concerned with being able to say they sell out every year than creating a more electric student section.

    But either way, if you’re into sports, Zona Zoo lies way above the Devil’s Domain. You will find that out the first time you wake up at 4 a.m. to get in line for a basketball game at McKale Center only to find hundreds of people already in line, which you will do – it’s what college sports is all about.


    2. Bound for Beijing, summer school

    With the 2008 Summer Olympic Games right around the corner, the Wildcats are sending 23 current and former athletes to Beijing, along with four current coaches and three other athletes who currently train with Arizona coaches.

    These Arizona athletes are not only expected to participate in the games but also to contend for medals.

    For the 14 Wildcat swimmers taking to the pool in early August, UA assistant coach Augie Busch said he expects them to return with “”more than eight (medals),”” which is what Arizona brought home from the 2004 games.

    Additionally, the U.S. softball team – which is picked to win gold – includes four former Wildcat players and is led by Arizona’s own wizard of the diamond, Mike Candrea.

    Meanwhile, despite hours of online searching, it was difficult to find even two athletes with ASU ties bound for Beijing.

    Don’t feel too bad though: The Sun Devils did have several athletes compete, and fall short, in the Olympic trials. But I’m sure their parents are very proud of them.


    3. ASU’s long, storied and corrupt
    baseball team

    While Arizona’s baseball team is led by one of the game’s most respected coaches, Andy Lopez, and is also the program to produce all-star Major Leaguers like Trevor Hoffman and Terry Francona, the ASU baseball team serves as a prime example of why the school-mascot earned the nickname “”the Scum Devils.””

    I’ll begin with the most obvious example: Barry Bonds. That’s right – the same man who juiced his way into the record books as the Major League all-time home run king, as well as into becoming one of the least-attractive free agents on the market, got his start at a school fitting for his character: ASU.

    To exemplify the Scum Devils’ less-than-honorable character, let’s look at a more recent example. Just last year, ASU head coach Pat Murphy – a well-known coach in college baseball – came under fire after former team manager Mikel Moreno spoke to university officials about a number of incidents regarding academic fraud and recruiting violations within the team.

    Murphy then took the high road in an article by the East Valley Tribune, calling Moreno a “”disgruntled employee”” who “”(made) it his mark to take down the program.””
    What character.


    4. Can’t fund their sports

    To me, this one is puzzling. ASU has one of the largest student bodies in the nation with an enrollment of more than 63,000. The school still, however, found itself unable to finance three of the school’s men’s varsity sports – tennis, swimming and diving, and wrestling all got the boot
    last year.

    Perhaps the athletics department pumped too much money into its basketball program this last year – which incidentally still missed the NCAA tournament despite posting its best season in years – which caused the fall of the three programs.

    But at least the boosters cared enough about Sun Devil athletics to help resurrect the sports. Oh wait, scratch that, they only cared enough to reinstate the swimming team.

    So I guess it’s tough luck for the tennis players and wrestlers. But hey, they could come down to Tucson – Arizona is not cutting sports anytime soon. In fact, the Wildcats are gaining some, with the likely addition of a women’s water polo team in 2010.

    So now, assuming ASU can hold onto its team, there can be a rivalry in this sport too.

    Oh, and don’t forget about ASU’s cheer squad, which was cut after a racy photo showed up online. I won’t even go there, though.


    5. Student section character

    As a sports fan I admit it can be easy to get caught up in the moment and lose sense of what would be deemed acceptable behavior. Arizona fans have showed their lows, most recently last season when a fan threw a water bottle onto the court during a basketball loss to USC late in the year. Profane chants also found their way into Zona Zoo a few times last spring.
    Despite these few incidents, Arizona’s student section could be described as mostly sportsmanlike. For instance, baseball’s “”Hot Corner”” prides itself on coming up with clean, non-derogatory phrases to bark at opposing teams throughout the game in the spirit of competition, but also sportsmanship.

    ASU, however, has been infamous for having characteristically rude students.

    In addition to the various racial slurs and cursing heard amongst the Devil’s Domain throughout a routine game, the fans are also known for their personal attacks. Drunken fans once chanted “”Where’s your dad?”” among other phrases at former basketball star Steve Kerr after his father was assassinated by terrorists in
    Beirut.

    They even attacked UA basketball coach Lute Olson with offensive phrases regarding his former wife, Bobbi, after she had died of cancer in 2001.

    There are many reasons why Arizona athletics are above those at ASU, but none greater than this. So remember that next time you’re at an Arizona-ASU game of any kind – because it’s not just the athletes that make Arizona stand far above those annoying neighbors to the north.

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