This Week in Arizona Football History

Sept. 10, 2008

This week the Arizona Wildcats travel to Albuquerque, N.M., to conclude non-conference play in 2008.

Here's a look back at four Arizona football games played this week in different Septembers of years past. 

33 Years Ago...

Sept. 14, 1974


            TUCSON, Ariz. - To open what ended as one of the Wildcats' best-ever seasons (9-2), Jim Young's second UA squad slipped past San Diego State, 17-10, before a crowd of 38,914 in then 40,000-seat Arizona Stadium.

            The Cats' 1-2-3 backfield - quarterback Bruce Hill (jersey No. 1), and backs Willie Hamilton (2) and Jim Upchurch (3) - proved effective in helping down the visiting Aztecs.

            Hill passed for 114 yards and a score - to Scott Piper - while Hamilton added 89 rushing yards and Upchurch 79 and a touchdown.

            They posted the points while defense overcame an SDSU attack led by quarterback Craig Penrose. Interceptions by UA's Mike Battles, Dennis Anderson and Roussell Williams were key, while the Cats had solid games from defensive linemen Glenn Gresham and Mike Dawson, and linebacker Mark Jacobs.


Football National Champions - USC (AP) and Oklahoma (Coaches)

U.S. President - Gerald Ford (a month after Richard Nixon's resignation

Oscar, Best Picture - `The Godfather Part II'

Signs of the Times - Gas costs about 50 cents per gallon... Long hair... Led Zeppelin... the word `Internet' is reportedly first used... 'Wheel of Fortune' premieres... the Fonz... stay-on tabs for beverage cans debut... Ten Cent Beer Night forfeit by Cleveland Indians... UPC bar codes on food packaging starts... breakdancing spawned... HBO a year away...


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25 Years Ago...

Sept. 17, 1983


            PULLMAN, Wash.--The Wildcats took to the road with their highest ranking to date - No. 7 --and worked over the Washington State Cougars, 45-6, to improve to 3-0.

            Larry Smith's talent-laden team - 13 players eventually suited up in the NFL - was more than up to the task, rushing for 254 yards with a stable of backs and throwing for 208 more. Meantime the UA defense had a slate of big plays to hold the Mark Rypien-led Cougs to a pair of field goals.

            Cornerback Randy Robbins' 45-yard interception return for a score helped him earn Pac-10 defensive player of the week honors while linebackers Ricky Hunley, John Kaiser, Steve Boadway and Lamonte Hunley took care of business in the middle of things.

            Sophomore quarterback Alfred Jenkins took over in the second period after starter Tom Tunnicliffe twisted an ankle, and helped lead UA's attack, mostly handing off to Chris Brewer, Vance Johnson, Phil Freeman and others.


Football National Champions - Miami

U.S. President - Ronald Reagan

Oscar, Best Picture - `Terms of Endearment'

Signs of the Times - Compact disks introduced... final episode of M*A*S*H on TV... MTV is two years old... 'Billie Jean' by Michael Jackson and 'Maneater' by Hall& Oates... fast food gets serious... Run DMC... Dodge Caravan is released... America West Airlines starts... the USFL is launched... the first handheld mobile phone in the U.S. market...


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19 Years Ago...

Sept. 16, 1989


            TUCSON, Ariz.--No. 6-ranked Oklahoma visited Tucson with hopes its 2-0 start signified another run in the post-Barry Switzer era, but left town dampened by a Wildcat defense-minded squad that pinned an unlikely 6-3 loss on the Sooners.

            Place kicker Doug Pfaff provided all the scoring UA needed - notably the game-winning field goal with two seconds remaining to give the 50,931 fans a taste of Coach Dick Tomey's first victory over a Top-20 club.

            Safety Scott Geyer recovered a fumbled punt to give UA the ball at the OU 22 yard-line and lead to Pfaff's first FG (24 yards) of the night shortly before half time. His counterpart, Kurt Lashar, knotted the score with a 42-yard kick in the third period.

            Two Sooners' drives into UA territory ended with fumbles in the second half and with the game on the line, the Wildcats drove 37 tough yards on 12 plays to give Pfaff room for the winning 40-yard kick.  OU rushed for 222 yards and had zero passing yards, and held UA to 165 yards rushing and 49 through the air. The three OU turnovers were decisive.


Football National Champions - Miami

U.S. President - George H.W. Bush

Oscar, Best Picture - `Driving Miss Daisy'

Signs of the Times -  'The Simpsons' becomes a hit... linked information systems... the Energizer Bunny starts going... San Francisco earthquake tragedy blasts Bay Area during World Series... the Exxon Valdez... Guns N' Roses... rap gets its first Grammy (boycotted) by DJ Jazzy and the Fresh Prince... Lexus launched...


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12 Years Ago...

Sept. 14, 1996


            TUCSON, Ariz.--The Wildcats played their third game of the post-Desert Swarm era and smashed visiting Illinois, 41-0, in what would prove to be Arizona's one shutout in the next 147 games.

            Arizona, sans Swarmers Tedy Bruschi, Brandon Sanders, Chuck Osborne, Charlie Camp and company, still had enough defenders to pin a whitewash on the Illini, led by five interceptions including three for scores - 86 yards by Mikal Smith, 33 yards by Chester Burnett and 63 yards by freshman cornerback Dennis Northcutt in one of his final appearances on defense. He became a fulltime receiver two games later.

            UA quarterback Keith Smith and tailback Gary Taylor each rushed for 143 yards to help pace UA to a total of 372 on the ground.

            Redshirt freshman linebacker Marcus Bell had 14 tackles in a backup role. Smith ran a shotgun play-fake 73 yards for UA's first touchdown early in the fourth quarter, and the UA exploded with the three scoring returns.


Football National Champions - Florida

U.S. President - William J. Clinton

Oscar, Best Picture - `The English Patient'

Signs of the Times -  Gas costs about $1.40 a gallon... Netscape and a modest 500,000 commercial web sites... Boyz II Men... home-based satellite TV dishes take hold... cloned Dolly the Sheep is born... The Fugees... 'Independence Day' ... the Bulls and Jordan win 70 games... Nintendo 64 released... the O.J. Simpson trial...


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