The images are forever etched in the minds of Arizona basketball fans, from Miles Simon falling to the court clutching the basketball as Arizona won its first and only NCAA title in 1997, to Lute Olson’s hair being mussed in the process, to Jason Terry sleeping in his uniform for four consecutive games in the middle of all the madness. All are indelible in Wildcats history as Arizona calmly drove the winding and bumpy road to the Final Four and beyond. Before Simon, Terry, and Olson, however, there were the likes of Sean Elliott, Steve Kerr, Fred Enke, and Pop McKale—all pivotal figures in Arizona’s hoops history. There were also Fred Snowden, Mo and Stewart Udall, and a host of others who helped bring prominence to a school looking for respect first in the Southwest, and then in the rest of the nation. Arizona’s rise has made them one of television’s must-see teams and one of the country’s top winning programs over the past 25 years.
In Tales from the Arizona Wildcats Locker Room, author Steve Rivera takes readers back to the time when James Pierce wanted to be more of a movie idol than a coach. They will learn about the troubled times of the 1950s and ’60s, when racial tensions were high, and how Arizona’s first black player, Hadie Redd, dealt with them. Rivera also details Arizona’s participation in the Border Conference, its switch to the Western Athletic Conference, and its current dominance of the Pacific-10 Conference. This book is sure to be a must-have for any true Arizona fan.