Men's Basketball to Hold Scrimmage and Autograph Session to Open Season

Oct. 3, 2003

TUCSON, Ariz. - The University of Arizona men's basketball program will hold a scrimmage and autograph session on Saturday, Oct. 18, instead of starting practice at the stroke of midnight.

The scrimmage will begin in McKale Center at 4 p.m. MST with a 45-minute autograph session following immediately. The season-opening event will conclude at approximately 6 p.m. Admission is free and open to the public.

Opting for a more traditional Saturday afternoon start to the 2003-04 season, rather than the 'Midnight Madness' festivities that tipped-off practices in each of the last three seasons, gives the program a higher-quality practice session while still keeping its loyal fans involved.

'Holding our first practice Saturday afternoon gives us the opportunity to have a good practice and keep our fans, especially the families, involved,' said Arizona head coach Lute Olson. 'We realize that this may disappoint some of our fans, but it been difficult for our players to come back and practice fresh on Saturday afternoon after a Midnight Madness event.'

Olson returns eight letterwinners in 2003-04 from last season's 28-4 club that won the Pac-10 Conference championship and advanced to the NCAA West Regional final. Arizona opens the 2003-04 campaign at home on Monday, Nov. 24, against Northern Arizona. Tip-off in McKale Center is scheduled for 6:30 p.m. MST.

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