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The Daily Wildcat

The Daily Wildcat

 

Arizona basketball game postponed

Originally scheduled to take place at 4:30 p.m. today at McKale Center, the Arizona men’s basketball game against Stanford has been postponed until 12:30 p.m. Sunday due to the shooting of U.S. Congresswoman Gabrielle Giffords, among others, in Tucson earlier Saturday.

“”Obviously we want to have our thoughts and prayers go our to the families of the victims of this terrible tragedy,”” UA athletic director Greg Byrne said in a 3 p.m. press conference.

“”The university feels the game should be delayed with deep respect to the victims and families impacted by this tragedy,”” he added in an earlier press release.

Arizona head coach Sean Miller also released a statement regarding the decision to postpone the game.

“”Basketball should be the last thing on anyone’s mind right now,”” the statement read. “”As a husband, father, member of the community, today’s events have effected me deeply.””

Stanford athletic director Bob Bowlsby talked with Byrne in making the decision to postpone the game, a decision Byrne said was made without hesitation.

“”They basically put it in our hands,”” Byrne said of both Bowlsby and Cardinal head coach Johnny Dawkins.

Usual security forces used for basketball games also are preoccupied today because of the shooting that took place in front of a Safeway in northwest Tucson.

“”They needed to be out focused on the issues at hand today,”” Byrne said.

The first-year athletic director said he doesn’t remember postponing a game.

He did witness his father, former Oregon athletic director Bill Byrne, deal with such issues in the 1980s. Greg Byrne said his father’s Oregon appointment included conflicts stemming from a sniper at Oregon football’s Autzen Stadium and a bus crash involving the wrestling team.

Tomorrow’s game will be televised on Fox Sports Arizona. Greg Byrne said he hopes the game will play a part in getting through the tragedy of the shooting.

“”Sports often brings people together,”” he said. “”We want to look forward to providing that opportunity to tomorrow’s community to get everybody together.

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