ASU prepares for the arrival of rival UA with longstanding traditions
November 25, 2009 · Published By Student Journalist
Tempe, AZ – The rivalry between Arizona State University and University of Arizona is one that dates back over 100 years.
That’s over 100 years of the Territorial Cup and the “Duel in the Desert” for football, and just as long for basketball, baseball and every other sport the two compete in.
Over the years, some traditions have stayed the same, some have evolved and some have been created specifically for a certain year.
As in longstanding tradition, students guard the gold ‘A’ on Tempe Butte from being painted red in shifts that last throughout the day and continue overnight.
Also, this year, the Student Alumni Association for Arizona State University is working directly with the Alumni Association and the Undergraduate Student Government to come up with creative ways for students to participate in the spirit of the rivalry.
Besides guarding the mountain, the association worked with other groups to come up with the idea of a t-shirt exchange.
“I work directly with the Alumni Association,” Kimberly Miller, Student Director for Beat U of A Week, said. “And they decided they wanted to get red out of Tempe by having people donate a red shirt in exchange for a new gold one.”
The t-shirt exchange took place on Tuesday, November 24 at Old Main on the Tempe campus. Students were notified via email, fliers and word of mouth to show up between 8 a.m. and 2 p.m. to donate any red shirt and get it replaced with a free gold one.
By noon, the pile of red shirts exceeded 6 feet high, and students were enjoying the festivities being put on by the Student Alumni Association.
The red shirts collected will be donated to homeless shelters in Tempe and in Tucson, Miller said.
“I think SAA is doing a great job trying to get students involved,” freshman Gabriela Lopez said. “I think it’s a great way to get us excited about our first U of A game.”
With the game quickly approaching, the association is doing its best to promote the week despite the fact that many students are home for the Thanksgiving holiday.
“We just want to offer students free stuff and an incentive,” Mat Estrada, a student coordinator for Beat U of A Week, said. “And we just want as many students, especially those who live in the area, to do their best to come out to the game even though it is a holiday weekend.”
Although they were unsuccessful in protecting the ‘A’ from being painted red earlier in the week, the Student Alumni Association plans to not only bring out awareness of the incident and prevent it from happening again, but also to plan some pranks of their own.
“I can’t say what we’re going to do,” Miller said, “but I can assure you it will definitely be payback.”
Guest article contributed by Rachel Korchin, Student
Walter Cronkite School of Journalism and Mass Communication