Daily Wildcat | Homecoming and History | October 2023

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Fall now before autumn leaves

Add some pumpkin spice to your Wildcat Homecoming this year. Find fall ideas, campus news, basketball previews and more inside.

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Homecoming and History ● October 2023

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Text STARBUCKS to 64336 to learn more.

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Homecoming and History print | VOLUME 117, ISSUE 42 Fall activies


How to get into the autumn spirit


Highlights from the class of 1973

School spirit


Get to know Wilbur and Wilma

A15 Season preview

Arizona women’s basketball

Arizona men’s basketball

A19 COVID-19


Editor-in-Chief Nate Stenchever editor@dailywildcat.com Managing Editor JT Thorpe jtthorpe@dailywildcat.com Training Coordinator Annabel Lecky training@dailywildcat.com News Editors Sam Parker Kiara Adams news@dailywildcat.com Opinions Editor Olivia Krupp opinion@dailywildcat.com

Sports Editors Mason Duhon Jason Dayee sports@dailywildcat.com

Comics Editor Sela Margalit smargalit@dailywildcat.com

Arts & Life Editors Amanda Mourelatos Emilee Ceuninck arts@dailywildcat.com

Social Media Coordinator Kate Ewing kateewing@dailywildcat.com

Photo/Multimedia Editor Noor Haghighi photo@dailywildcat.com

Designers Nate Stenchever JT Thorpe Sam Parker Jason Dayee Mason Duhon Kate Ewing Sela Margalit Emilee Ceuninck Noor Haghighi

Copy Chiefs Hannah Palmisano May Otzen copy@dailywildcat.com

See how Tucsonans celebrate fall Hoco history


Catch up with Arizona’s hoco games

Biosphere 2

Learn about the new vaccine, testing

Volume 117 • Issue 42


Asteroid sample makes it back home

Autumn gallery

Season preview


Space research

Step into history



Unique research in Tucson

October 2023

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ABOUT THE DAILY WILDCAT: The Daily Wildcat is the University of Arizona’s student-run, independent news source. While publishing daily online at DailyWildcat.com, its print edition is distributed on campus and throughout Tucson during fall and spring semesters. The function of the Wildcat is to disseminate news to the

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COVER ART: Sela Margalit | The Daily Wildcat

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Homecoming and History ● October 2023


‘Tis the season for pumpkin spice and everything nice BY DESARAE TUCKER

These activities along with more are also included in admission. A few more activities cost an extra fee up to $10. The fall festivities go from Oct. 7 through Oct. 29. The pumpkin patch will be open Thursdays and Fridays from 3 p.m. to 8 p.m., 9 a.m. to 8 p.m. on Saturdays and 9 a.m. to 7 p.m. on Sundays. On Thursdays and Fridays, admission will be $21 at the gate and $18 online. Admission for Saturdays and Sundays will be $23 at the gate and $20 online. Marana Pumpkin Patch is located on Trico Road and depending on traffic, it could be up to an hour drive from Tucson.

The Daily Wildcat

Many places around the world are gearing up for sweater weather and pumpkin spice everything, while Tucson won’t let up the 100-degree weather. But just because Tucson hasn’t received the memo of the season change it doesn’t mean you can’t still celebrate fall. Here are a few ways to enjoy the autumn at home and outside.

Make fun fall treats

Since the weather hasn’t cooled down yet, you can still enjoy frozen treats. If you’d still like to embrace the fall season, a way to combine the two would be to make pumpkin spice flavored popsicles. Get some silicone popsicle molds in the shape of a pumpkin or even a skull, wooden popsicle sticks and your pumpkin spice mixture. You’ll be able to taste autumn even in this hot weather. Baking is a popular hobby people pick up in the fall season and it can be festive to make your treats into shapes like pumpkins, skulls or even leaves. Pumpkin shaped bread rolls are a savory option to show off to friends or keep for yourself. Cinnamon is also another tasty fall favorite, and baking cinnamon rolls can add a nice scent in your home to get you in the season spirit. To make the cinnamon rolls more fun you can turn them into pumpkin shapes by getting some cooking twine and wrapping it around the rolls.

Make boo baskets

You might have seen the idea of boo baskets on TikTok. It’s a

Cooking on Campus Halloween Bash


WHILE IT MAY NOT feel like fall in Tucson because of the heat, there are still plenty of ways to get in the spirit.

simple do-it-yourself project that you can make for your friends or significant other. Figure out if they like the fall or Halloween aesthetic more and fill their basket(s) with cute decorations, some of their favorite snacks and anything else you think they’d enjoy. For a fall themed basket, a chunky knit blanket or trendy UGG Tazz slippers could be nice options. More affordable options could include long thick socks or a fall scented candle. For spookier baskets, you could choose an orange pumpkin trickor-treat pail as the basket and add a Halloween sweatshirt, a coffee mug or a few of their favorite horror movies.

Make a fall playlist

Music can set the tone for any occasion even during the fall season. You can make a playlist full of songs that give you cozy sweaters and jumping-in-leaves vibes. “Willow” by Taylor Swift or “There She Goes” by The La’s are a couple of songs that might make you want to snuggle up with a cozy blanket and watch “Gilmore Girls”. You could also just listen to the whole “Evermore” album” by Swift. Paola Rodriguez, an Arizona Public Media reporter, is a fan of Swift who recently went to her “The Eras Tour” concert in Glendale, Arizona. According to Rodriguez, Swift has mentioned

that “Evermore” represents the transition to fall. “When I listen to ‘Evermore’ and I listen to songs like ‘cowboy like me’, it just makes me want to jump into a pit of yellow and orange leaves and put on a newspaper hat and live my best life,” Rodriguez said.

Marana Pumpkin Patch

Marana Pumpkin Patch has 50 acres of homegrown pumpkins with all different sizes to pick from. There’s also a corn maze that you can walk through and it’s free with admission. They offer a variety of activities for kids and adults like a diesel train ride around the patch, a super slide and mini tractors.

Cooking on Campus is a student-led initiative that works to provide students with handson cooking classes. They hold three classes a semester and have one coming up on Tuesday, Oct. 24, at 7 p.m. in the Shantz building. For the Halloween Bash, they are teaching two recipes; a “BOOrito” bowl and rice crispy treats. Both recipes are going to be vegetarian. “We try to [theme] our recipes around campus pantry ingredients and shelf table ingredients that are affordable, nutritious and easy for students,” said Natasha Juhl, director of Cooking on Campus. Tickets are $10 each and can be purchased on their Eventbrite page. There is room for 10 participants. “We do have limited capacity so I would recommend getting a ticket earlier, the earlier the better,” said Caitlin McKenna, advisor of Cooking on Campus and nutrition counselor at Campus Health.

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Fire and spirit: The annual UA Homecoming tradition



UA HOMECOMING FESTIVITIES BEGIN with the lighting of “A” mountain and end with the bonfire. Students and alums look forward to showing their Wildcat spirit during the week of events celebrating the class of 1973.

BY BEN TISDALE The Daily Wildcat

The University of Arizona will finish this year’s week of Wildcat pride and spirit on Nov. 3 with the Homecoming bonfire and royalty crowning following the lighting of “A” Mountain. Homecoming week starts on Sunday, Oct. 29, with the lighting of “A” Mountain, where students, alumni and the Tucson community light the “A” Mountain on Sentinel Peak. The week continues with a class reunion for the class of 1973 as well as more events. The week culminates with the bonfire. The UA has been celebrating by lighting “A” Mountain since the early 1900s, and continues the tradition to celebrate today. It was called off for a time but recently began again in 2008.

“The bonfire is an event the Friday night of homecoming week where the whole university gets together to witness the crowning of that year’s homecoming king and queen,” said Adi Beckman, a senior who has attended the event before. The many different candidates line up after getting nominated, and they wait to see if they win. The Pride of Arizona marching band plays songs before and after the event, dancing and celebrating along with Wilbur and Wilma. There is also a cheerleading routine filled with flips, jumps and more. There are several speeches from different people, including UA staff. “After the names are announced and everyone is congratulated, there is a big bonfire of wood pallets that’s burned in front of Old Main,” Beckman said The bonfire is put on by the Tucson

A FIREFIGHTER HOSES DOWN the flames at the Homecoming bonfire and royalty crowning at 7 p.m. on Oct 28, 2022. This event took place on the west side of Old Main.

Fire Department, where everyone stands in front of Old Main, watching the flames light the night. Since the heat is so intence, spectators can feel the fire from far away, and its light paints the crowd and buildings red. As the evening ends and the flames get smaller, the fire department ends the evening by putting out the fire. “I believe that you’re going to experience things that, even if you took a picture, you wouldn’t be able to capture the moment [in]. That’s really what I’m expecting,” said Tobi Adigun, a senior planning to attend the event. To Marc Acuna, vice president of Student and Alumni Engagement, said the bonfire and royalty crowning “gives you a moment to celebrate the great place that is the University [of Arizona].” According to Acuna, the event is for everyone. For many, the event is also a

way to see the school community. “To me, the bonfire is a great way to cap off the week of crazy school spirit and community that is homecoming week. By Friday, most of the alumni are in town, so for me, it’s always an exciting time to get to see my friends who graduated and take part in a UA tradition all together,” Beckman said. For those that haven’t gone yet, like Adigun, he recommends “anyone who is kind of on the fence on Homecoming or who is unsure about going, they should just go. I guarantee they are going to be looking forward to the next Homecoming.” The lighting of “A” Mountain will take place on Oct. 29 from 5 to 7 p.m. at the MSA Annex located at 267 S. Avenida del Convento. The bonfire takes place on Nov. 3 from 7 to 8 p.m. on the west side of Old Main.

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Homecoming and History● October 2023


Looking back at news that shaped the UA’s class of 1973 BY SAM PARKER The Daily Wildcat

This year’s Homecoming celebrates the University of Arizona class of 1973, and while these alumni graduated 50 years ago, the remnants of their experiences linger and impact students on campus today. From issues like Roe v. Wade to affordable housing, the news that permeated the college experience of the class of ‘73 persists, albeit in new forms, and affects the class of 2023.

Equal Rights Amendment

A topic that dominated campus-wide conversations for the class of ‘73 was that of the Equal Rights Amendment, which sought to “end the legal distinctions between men and women in terms of divorce, property, employment, and other matters,” according to the National Archives. As reported by the Brennan Center for Justice, “In March 1972, the amendment passed both chambers of Congress with bipartisan support far exceeding the two-thirds majorities required by the Constitution. Congress promptly sent the proposed amendment to the states for ratification with a seven-year deadline.” However, by the time of this deadline, and a three-year extension proposed by Congress had passed, only 35 states had ratified the ERA. On Feb. 26, 1973, as reported by the Daily Wildcat, the ERA died in the state house judiciary committee. While Arizona never ratified the ERA, many organizations on the UA campus and in the greater Tucson community advocated for it. In January 1973, as reported by the Daily Wildcat, the National Organization For Women began circulating a petition on campus in support of the ERA. Faculty members also expressed

support of and confidence in the amendment. “I think it will pass in Arizona. Something that previously was a matter of laughter and elbow punching among men is now a subject of debate and concern due to the women’s movement. If it wasn’t for the conscience-raising efforts of women, we’d still be where we were when the bill was proposed in 1920,” said Shirley Fahey, assistant psychology professor at the university’s medical school. This spirit of resilience and optimism, while ultimately not enough to carry the ERA through the state legislature at the time, persisted and manifested itself through a variety of measures aimed at resolving issues of inequity. A reinvigorated focus on this amendment emerged in 2017, and continues to this day. In March of this year, 51 years after the amendment first traveled through both chambers of Congress, Republican lawmakers in Arizona blocked a vote that would decide whether or not Arizona would ratify the Equal Rights Amendment. This is just one example of many that demonstrate how legal arguments and pursuits to revive the ERA persist on a local and national scale. This summer, motivated in part by the Dobbs v. Jackson decision overturning Roe v. Wade, Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand of New York and Rep. Cori Bush of Missouri introduced a joint resolution in Congress which contended that “the measure has already been ratified and is enforceable as the 28th Amendment to the Constitution. The resolution states that the national archivist, who is responsible for the certification and publication of constitutional amendments, must immediately do so,” according to The New York Times. The ERA and the debates that surround it are issues centuries in the making, as

evidenced by the conversations had in 1973 and now in 2023.

Roe v. Wade

At the same time that impassioned debates about the ERA and gender equality were taking place in legislatures across the country, Roe v. Wade, a monumental Supreme Court decision that protected a woman’s right to choose whether or not to have an abortion under the 14th Amendment’s “right to privacy,” was decided in January 1973. Now, over 50 years later, the decision has been overturned by the Supreme Court, and protests across the campus community and nationwide persist. The sudden changing landscape around abortion legality created policy confusion that influenced political, social and medical spheres. In the spring of 1973, the University Medical Center Tucson began performing abortions in compliance with the Roe v. Wade decision, but there were stipulations that accompanied this progress. As reported by Anne Fisher of the Daily Wildcat on April 15, 1973, “according to the hospital’s policy, the Obstetric and Gynecology Department would perform only a certain number of operations weekly or would perform the abortion only if the operation involved complications.” While physicians in 1973 tried to navigate a world in which abortion was legal, physicians now are trying to navigate a world in which it may not be. In both eras, confusion about this evolving landscape impacted the medical community. Following the Dobbs decision which overturned Roe v. Wade, abortion in Arizona is illegal after 15 weeks of pregnancy. According to professor Christopher Griffin, director of empirical & policy research at the James E. Rogers College of Law, the burden of legal punishment for an abortion currently

falls most heavily on the provider of the abortion. In 1973, the Roe v. Wade ruling dominated public discourse and emerged as a subject of great debate and protest. Local organizations and politicians voiced fierce support and opposition to the legalization of abortion, with groups like Right to Life organizing nearly 5,000 members to rally around a “pro-life” cause and groups like Planned Parenthood promoting abortion accessibility. This passion that surrounds this issue, from both sides, is a common thread tying the sociopolitical landscape of 1973 and 2023 together.

Vietnam War

Discussions about the Vietnam War dominated headlines in Tucson and across the country throughout the duration of the class of 1973’s college experience. A defining element of U.S. society, politics and culture at the time, the war saw approximately 2.7 million Americans serve in the Republic of Vietnam, according to the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs. The last U.S. troops left South Vietnam in the spring of 1973. This came after years of protests by members of the American public who decried the violence in Southeast Asia. Throughout the 60s and 70s, many Tucsonans took to the streets to voice their opposition to the conflict. There exist a variety of resources and programs now for veterans living in Tucson. The Tucson Veterans Affairs office has promoted “Patriot Pantry,” an initiative to address the problem of food insecurity that many veterans face. Additionally, a group called “Women Warriors” is a Tucson non-profit organization dedicated to offering “funding, programs and services to female veterans in need,” according to a report from KGUN-9. CONTINUED ON PAGE A7

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The last U.S. troops left South Vietnam in the spring of 1973, after years of protest by members of the American public who decried the violence in Southeast Asia. Throughout the ‘60s and ‘70s, many Tucsonans took to the streets to voice their opposition to the conflict. There exist a variety of resources and programs now for veterans living in Tucson. The Tucson Veterans Affairs office has promoted “Patriot Pantry,” an initiative to address the problem of food insecurity that many veterans face. Additionally, a group called “Women Warriors” is a Tucson nonprofit organization dedicated to offering “funding, programs and services to female veterans in need,” according to a report from KGUN-9. While U.S. service members may have left Vietnam over 50 years ago, there are lingering impacts of the war and U.S. conflicts that are still felt today in the greater Tucson community by the people who experienced them.

Housing crisis

In 1973, Tucson was dealing with the ramifications of a housing crisis that disproportionately impacted low-income and minority communities, a problem that persists to this day. A Daily Wildcat headline from 1973 reads, “Increased Inner-City Housing Called Basic Need of Tucson.” The piece by staff writer Karen Ryan discussed the lack of accessible public housing available to residents of the community, and architect for the Tucson Community Development and Design Center, Jody Gibbs, contended that “Tucson housing conditions for the poor will not be improved until the city recognizes housing as a basic need,” according to Ryan’s article. Tucson, and Arizona as a whole, still struggle to provide affordable housing to residents. A recent study from the National Low Income Housing Coalition ranked Arizona among the five worst states for affordable housing. The Pima County Board of Supervisors recently contributed $2 million to affordable housing projects in order to continue to fight the housing crisis in Tucson. The money, awarded to the Rio Mercado project on South Park Avenue, is part of a larger effort by city and county officials to mitigate the harmful effects of Tucson’s housing crisis. According to Ernesto Portillo, the public information officer of the City


AS THE CLASS OF 1973 is welcomed back to the University of Arizona this year for Homecoming, Daily Wildcat News Editor Sam Parker took a dive into the news headlines that impacted thier lives as students to find the lasting impacts they have had on the students and world of today.

of Tucson Housing and Community Development, the city has made affordable housing a priority, as evidenced by the various developments, initiatives and studies the city has been working on. One major initiative the city implemented was the Housing Affordability Strategy for Tucson plan, which outlines comprehensive strategies designed to “support the preservation and construction of new housing in Tucson to help meet the demand.” In the 1973 article from the Daily Wildcat, Gibbs cited a vast array of related concerns that stemmed from this issue of housing inequality and inaccessibility for impoverished communities in Tucson. The lack of affordable housing, he said, “perpetuates the social problems of the poor. Overcrowded living conditions lead to family breakdowns, absenteeism from school and work, crime, and a continuation of the poverty cycle.” Gibbs also referenced racism as a driving factor in these inequities. The issue of racial inequality in the housing market was not limited to 1970’s Tucson; this problem endures in 2023, originating in a history of discriminatory practices and recently exacerbated by

the 2008 housing market crash and the COVID-19 pandemic. Redlining, a “system used primarily by banks that would outline an area of town in which money would not be lent, or people in that area would have a very difficult time, if not impossible time, getting loans” was a major practice in Tucson whose legacy continues to this day. However, city officials are working to mitigate the continued impacts of this racist history that Gibbs referenced back in 1973. “The city also has a new office of equity, and that office has first been focusing on issues of internal equity, but eventually issues of equity will be seen in public policy, and it’s already there,” Portillo said. “Council member Lane Santa Cruz, since she joined the council three years ago, has been arguing that we as a city create budgets through an equity lens, making sure that whatever fund is appropriated that we keep in mind this past inequity and just try to rectify them today and tomorrow.”

Notable mentions:

The UA’s 1973 Homecoming marked the first time women were included on the committee to select a Homecoming queen.

Bike thefts emerged as a major issue on campus (a topic students and community members can still relate to in 2023). As reported by the Daily Wildcat, “Douglas C. Paxton, campus police chief, said bicycle auctions held every six months rid the police of unclaimed bikes. ‘Campus police watch for bicycles all day,’ he continued, and 70% of stolen bikes were recovered last year. Paxton said that two or three bicycle thefts are reported on campus every day […], several solutions have been proposed but none have been found completely secure or financially reasonable, he said.” To parallel this news from 1973, in September 2023, the University of Arizona Police Department warned the student body of an increase in vehicle thefts, and on Sept. 27, the armed robbery of a bike took place on campus. In fall 1973, the UA welcomed its largest class up to that point, with 27,458 students enrolled. Comparatively, in 2022, the total number of students enrolled at the university in the fall was 51,134. The university, in partnership with the Smithsonian Institution, started work on the Multiple Mirror Telescope located at the summit of Mt. Hopkins as part of the MMT Observatory.

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Homecoming and History ● October 2023


Trick-or-Treat the Avenue: A spooky Tucson tradition BY AJ STASH CASTILLO The Daily Wildcat

Halloween is just around the corner. As people start to prepare by buying candy in bulk as well as creating their costumes, Tucson’s Fourth Avenue gets ready for one of its signature events, Trick-or-Treat the Avenue. Casey Anderson, chief operating officer of the North Fourth Avenue Merchants Association, went into detail about the kid and pet-friendly event. “It’s great! It brings a whole different demographic down to the avenue, which I think is cool! It brings children and that livelihood down for the familyfriendly event. We started the costume [competition] a couple of years ago and it was a big hit,” Anderson said. Anderson spoke about how many events on Fourth Avenue were geared toward adults rather than kids. So, wanting to have a more kid-friendly event, Trick-or-Treat the Avenue was born. This will be their third year of hosting the event. Businesses also participate, but it’s usually hit or miss as the event is on a Sunday. Anderson is hoping for 100% participation this year. The merchants will have specials for that day as well. “We’re hoping to just continue to grow it. We want it to be all-inclusive, for all demographics, for everyone. It really is a community event! It’s a fun way to be outside and celebrate Halloween and


THE OFFICIAL FLIER ADVERTISING this year’s Trick-or-Treat the Avenue. The event takes place Oct. 29, from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m.

trick-or-treating with local businesses involved,” Anderson said. “It brings them down to Fourth Avenue to check out all our merchants and the kids usually leave with a lot of candy.” The event is pet friendly

and all Anderson asks is that pets are leashed and are well behaved around dressed up people, as some pets aren’t accustomed to seeing people in wacky costumes. Businesses often participate in the event, especially the

famous Tucson Thrift Shop. Established in 1979, it is the place for not just vintage clothing items but costumes as well! Owner Arlene Leaf went into detail about her experience with Trick-or-Treat the Avenue. “It’s fun! […] What I love

about it is that you just really see the whole community. I mean, there are streams of families with their children. Sometimes the parents are dressed up too, sometimes complementary to the kids, or sometimes just the kids. But you see that it’s an event that they feel comfortable with and enjoy,” Leaf said. Leaf’s biggest challenge is that the business never had enough candy to hand out to the kids. They ended up handing out fake tattoos and fake mustaches once they ran out. This year Leaf is buying vampire teeth and other trinkets besides candy to prepare. Leaf also spoke about how much she loves watching the community come together to celebrate Halloween, even before Trick-or-Treat the Avenue. “Community celebrating Halloween has been a dream I’ve held for a long time and I love seeing how it’s manifested […] On Halloween itself or the weekend before, adults come down with their costumes and they do a promenade […]. It’s like Greenwich Village,” Leaf said. To Leaf, watching the community and families come together has such positive energy. Her favorite costume that she has seen by far was someone dressed as a table with an actual tablecloth and dishes glued down. Trick-or-Treat the Avenue takes place on Sunday, Oct. 29, from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. all along Fourth Avenue. Stay up to date with any changes by following Historic Fourth Avenue on Istagram @4thavetucson.

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HughesFCU.org/MORE Insured by NCUA. No purchase or payment of any kind is necessary to enter into the promotion. *A $4.95 monthly fee applies after the free 90-day no obligation trial period. You may cancel any time by contacting the credit union by phone at 520-794-8341, through secure email form, or in person at any Hughes branch location. Odds of winning depend on the number of eligible entries received. Winners will be awarded a voucher to be used through Benefits PLUS®. Certain restrictions apply. Limit one entry per person. Must be age 18 or older at time of entry. Void where prohibited or restricted by law. All participants can enter the promotion by mailing a 3.5 x 5 inch card containing the hand-printed name, mailing address, email address and phone number of the participant to the following address: Hughes Federal Credit Union, Attn: Marketing Dept. / Experience More, PO Box 11900, Tucson, AZ 85734. All entries must be received by November 16, 2023. See Official Rules at HughesFCU.org/More

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Homecoming and History ● October 2023


HORROR ARTISTS AND VENDORS gather up to sell and showcase their work at the Tucson Terrorfest this October.

Tucson Terrorfest returns this October BY KORAYMA LAMADRID The Daily Wildcat

Tucson’s only horror convention is back in town for its fourth annual year. On Oct. 21 and 22, horror-obsessed Tucsonans will be able to check out local vendors and horror artists at the Tucson Terrorfest Horror Convention. The event will be located at 191 E. Toole Ave. Tucson Terrorfest is both a horror film festival and a convention. This will be the film festival’s 13th annual year and will have movie screenings at 127 E. Congress St. The screenings will be from Oct. 19 through Oct. 22. The horror convention started when the co-owner, Michael Olivares, pitched the idea to the film festival’s founder, David Pike. Olivares enjoyed Tucson’s comic-book conventions and thought it would be a great idea to start a horror convention since there wasn’t one in Tucson. This will be the second year the convention is held at 191 Toole, and there will be about 40 vendors ranging from horror writers to taxidermy vendors. Olivares enjoys having the convention at 191 Toole because of its spooky basement environment. “The venue itself is very unique. It has a horror movie theme going on, a lot of the vendors liked the space last year, it feels like the inside of a cabin,” Olivares said. Olivares is most excited to see the growth of the convention and returning vendors as well as attendees. “The thing about Tucson natives is that they are into the creative vendors, artists, self-published creators,” Olivares said.

With the convention being homegrown, Olivares said he tried to keep the prices fairly cheap. Day passes for the horror con are $10. You are able to go back and forth from the festival and convention with the pass. You can enjoy some horror films, and when you need a break, you can go check out some vendors, according to Olivares. First-time vendor, Woodland Wanderland, is an oddities and curiosities shop that will be selling wet specimens, taxidermy art and trinkets. Founder, Sarah Simpson, began selling her artwork because she wants to honor the life the animals once had. “I don’t kill animals. I like animals. That is why I do this. I want to honor them, to preserve them,” Simpson said. Simpson is excited to join this year’s convention to meet and connect with everyone else who enjoys collecting odd items. Artist and comic book writer Tom Walbank will be selling his artwork and promoting his horror comic book that takes place in Tucson. “The convention is great, and it was nice to meet the community that was into horror films and comics and model making,” Walbank said. Walbank did not know there was a horror community before he started writing his comic book, or vending at the convention. Although Walbank’s comic book is about vampires, he will leave the dressing up to the professionals and children. “The community is a real safe place. If people from the outside are thinking about the community and are scared, it’s a safe, family-friendly environment,” Walbank said.

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UA-led space mission accomplished: Asteroid sample returns to Earth BY DANIELLE HARTSHORN The Daily Wildcat

The spacecraft from the University of Arizona Lunar and Planetary Laboratory-led OSIRIS-REx NASA mission, that successfully collected a sample of the asteroid Bennu, dropped the return capsule in the Utah desert Sept. 29. NASA then revealed Oct. 11 the OSIRIS-REx sample to the public in a livestream from the Johnson Space Center in Houston, Texas. Scientists plan to use the sample data from this potentially hazardous asteroid to gain insight into our solar system, as the organic material on this asteroid could give clues to the origins of life on Earth, and in this respect, NASA Administrator Bill Nelson revealed that the sample exceeded NASA’s expectations. “The first analysis shows samples that contain abundant water in the form of hydrated clay minerals, and they contain carbon […] at nearly 5% carbon by weight,” Nelson said, “The carbon and water molecules are exactly the kind of materials that we wanted to find, they are crucial elements in the formation of our own planet, and they are going to help us determine the origin of the elements that could have led to life.” According to Daniel Gladden, an OSIRIS-REx sample analyst, the exact carbon measurement found by the Carnegie Institution for Science was 4.7%. This is the highest abundance of carbon

from an extraterrestrial sample the institution has ever measured. Dante Lauretta, the mission’s principal investigator and regents professor of planetary science at UA, explained some of the mission’s current findings at the Oct. 11 NASA event. Lauretta fixated on how the findings could present key insight about the building blocks of life on earth. “The first panel […] those are the water-bearing clay minerals [… ]and they have water locked inside their crystal structure […] that is how we think water got to the earth, the reason that earth is an inhabitable world, that we have oceans and lakes and rivers and rain, is because these clay minerals like the ones we’re seeing from Bennu landed on earth 4-4.5 billion years ago,” Lauretta said. “So we’re seeing the way that water got incorporated into a solid material and ultimately into planets, and not just Earth, but probably Venus and Mars.” Researchers in the Johnson Space Center curation lab are currently “carefully and meticulously disassembling the hardware,” according to Francis McCubbin, a NASA astromaterials curator. This group of researchers is preparing samples to distribute to a sample analysis team that includes over 230 scientists from around the world. The OSIRIS-REx mission is the first U.S. mission to collect a sample from an asteroid, and Gladden called the asteroid selection and sample “an astrobiologist’s dream.”

“We ultimately selected it for the target of the sample return mission because it’s a very rare type of asteroid in the inner solar system. It’s really dark […] and that darkness is related to carbon,” said Lauretta. “The minerals and the chemicals formed over four and a half billion years ago. Therefore [the carbonaceous-type asteroids] existed before Earth was a planet.” Scientists believe this carbonaceous-type asteroid is one of the most abundant types in the solar system and one of the least wellunderstood. “Think of this as the unprocessed building blocks of the planets,” said Andrew Ryan, a research scientist at UA and co-investigator on the mission. “They haven’t been heated or melted very thoroughly. So it’s really pristine, original material.” Because asteroids like Bennu have been relatively unchanged since the solar system’s beginning, there is a need to study them. There is nothing on Earth that has been preserved since our planet’s formation because of the active geologic processes happening on the surface, said Anjani Polit, mission implementation systems engineer for the OSIRIS-REx mission. According to the OSIRIXREx website, “Bennu is also one of the most potentially hazardous asteroids, as it has a relatively high probability of impacting the Earth late in the 22nd century.” COURTESY UNITED LAUNCH ALLIANCE


THE OSIRIS-REX SPACECRAFT returned to earth and dropped a capsule containing a research sample in the Utah desert on Sept. 29. The sample came from the asteroid Bennu.

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Homecoming and History ● October 2023


According to Lauretta, the study will develop scientists’ understanding of the solar system evolution as well as planetary defense strategies; it will be easier for scientists to characterize asteroids that might hit Earth. In May 2011, the OSIRIS-REx mission was selected for flight. Researchers involved with the mission were dedicated to designing and testing

before the spacecraft launched in 2016 and arrived at Bennu two years later. They mapped and announced the location for sampling in 2019 and then collected the sample in 2020, Lauretta said. The gravity on Bennu is what scientists would describe as a microgravity environment. Bennu is the smallest object ever orbited, and the orbit of OSIRIS-REx around it was the closest orbit ever, Polit said. Once the spacecraft reached Bennu, Lauretta

and the OSIRIS-REx team faced unforeseen challenges and obstacles. Before the team launched to Bennu’s surface, they analyzed data from their telescopes and estimated that the surface contained sandlike particles that would be easy to collect. Once they reached the surface, they discovered the terrain had rugged rocks and boulders. What the scientists found was that the boulders themselves were fractured and porous. They realized

that when a boulder has many holes, its low density causes behavior in the thermal data similar to the thermal signature of the pebbles that the team expected there to be on the surface, Ryan said. “Before we got there, we just hadn’t considered that scenario,” Ryan said. The team had to send new code to the spacecraft so it could navigate more efficiently where it could land, according to Lauretta. When they finally found a safe spot for the spacecraft to obtain the fine-grain material they hoped to get, the spacecraft touched a surface akin to liquid. “It was like hitting a pool of water, and we just sunk in,” Lauretta said. “We just went all the way into the subsurface of the asteroid […] and finally the spacecraft timed out and

said okay, fire thrusters and back away. I honestly believe if we had not done that, the spacecraft would have just disappeared into the asteroid and we never would have heard from it again.” Despite these complications, the OSIRISREx team emerged with a successful and bountiful sample collection. When scientists at the Johnson Space Center first opened the canister, they were even surprised by extra asteroid material covering the sample collector, offering further opportunities for study. Going forward, NASA’s curation team is working on creating a sample catalog “which will give scientists from all around enough information to start to think about what science questions they

want to ask, and they can propose studies and specific quantities of samples they would like to use,” according to Nicole Lunning, the OSIRIS-REx lead curator. A peer review allocation board will then review these requests and, in approximately nine months, the approved researchers will receive samples. From laboratories on the UA campus to the next mission for this OSIRISREx spacecraft, there is a promising future for the next generation of young astronomical scientists who want to get involved in this discovery. “You really get to see the impact that you have on these young people and watch them grow into these leaders and then continue that legacy [into] the future,” Lauretta said.



DANTE LAURETTA, OSIRIS-REX principal investigator and University of Arizona professor of planetary sciences, speaks during a press conference announcing the first discoveries from the Bennu asteroid sample at NASA’s Johnson Space Center on Oct. 11.

A VIEW OF THE outside of the OSIRIS-REx sample collector. Sample material from asteroid Bennu can be seen on the middle right. Scientists have found evidence of both carbon and water in initial analysis of this material. The bulk of the sample is located inside.

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October 2023 • Homecoming and History

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Insider Q&A with Wilbur the Wildcat BY VALERIA NALANI The Daily Wildcat

The Daily Wildcat got the chance to interview the University of Arizona’s beloved mascots, Wilbur and Wilma. Get to know the mystery man behind Wilbur the Wildcat, his rigorous schedule and what the position means to him in this Q&A. Question: What is your favorite memory so far while being Wilbur? Wilbur: I have a lot of favorite memories, but I think traveling and meeting the mascots from different schools is my favorite. You have friends from all over the country who you get to see and meet. Q: What was the tryout process like? Have you done anything like this prior? Wilbur: The tryout process was really interesting. Basically, you have to submit a form all about yourself and why you want to do the job, and after that, you have to do an interview, which can be very stressful.

Then, of course, after that process you have to do a tryout as well, which requires you to do certain physical things, like running with the flag, a certain amount of pushups and things of that sort. I’d never really done anything like that before. I’d done sports in the past in high school, but the interview/ audition process was definitely very interesting to me. Q: How do you manage responsibilities? Wilbur: I kinda don’t — I’m just kidding. I think I’m pretty good at my time management. I’d say that this is something that I really enjoy doing, so I’m willing to put a lot of time into it. I still hang out with my friends most of the time. A lot of school work that I do is just in between all those things, which means the minute that I have a break, I have to be working on all of that. I think, at this point, I have gotten pretty good at managing my time.

other commitments. I usually get done with my day around 3 o’clock, but there are usually events throughout the week. Usually, there’s an event at a certain part of campus. For example, Sands Club Thursdays happen every Thursday before the home football game, which is a restaurant in the football stadium, and then there’s Bear Down Fridays. Finally, on game days, I have to be there pretty early because of all the pre-game activities we have to do. If there’s a game that weekend, I have a pretty busy schedule. Q: What would Wilbur’s theme song be? Wilbur: [The Pride of Arizona marching

band] plays this song called “Born To Be Wild.” I think that it fits Wilbur’s character because he’s a Wildcat and I just get really pumped to that song. Q: Why did you decide to be Wilbur? Wilbur: Honestly, it was so appealing to me because nobody knows that it’s you. It’s almost like putting your superhero cape on and being a superhero for the day. It’s a really good story to have in the future for my kids and grandkids. I have always idolized Wilbur; Wilma and he are the image for the school; they’re symbols and icons and I thought it would be such an honor.

Q: What does your schedule look like? Wilbur: My weekly schedule is usually workouts during the week, classes and

Behind the mask: Wilma the Wildcat BY CAITLYN MURPHY The Daily Wildcat

Wilma the Wildcat has been the iconic female mascot for the University of Arizona since 1986. Wilbur and Wilma “met on a blind date on March 1, 1986,” according to the UA’s alumni website. “They were married on Nov. 21, 1986, before a football game against Arizona State University. Wilma is known for her friendly personality. She’s often seen waving and blowing kisses to fans.” The identities of the UA students behind the masks are kept secret all year until the last regular-season home basketball game, the alumni website said. Having to keep their identity secret is sometimes a challenge for the mascots. “Saying no is my least favorite experience,

and not being able to explain it to my friends,” Wilma said. Although some elements of working as the UA mascot are challenging, like this vow to secrecy, Wilma noted that there are also many upsides to the role, in large part due to the engagement with the campus community. “There are too many fun experiences to count. Crowd surfing is definitely one of my favorites, though,” Wilma said. Wilma mentioned that her desire to fill the role was, in large part, motivated by the opportunity to connect with students and fans across campus. “I feel like being Wilma encapsulates representing the UA and the student body spirit. Not only is it a fun, amazing experience, but it bridges the gap between fans and athletic events,” Wilma said. Wilbur and Wilma have long served these


WILMA AND WILBUR CHEER on the Arizona football team at the start of the game against the University of Texas at El Paso Saturday, Sept. 16, at Arizona Stadium in Tucson. The Wildcats took the win 31-10.

roles and have been a fixture of UA campus life and school spirit. “Mascots have been a constant and definite thing students and faculty can always count on to inspire spirit on campus,” Wilma said. With Homecoming week coming up at the end of October, Wilma has been very busy at work. Extensive preparation for the mascots and across campus goes into the production of Homecoming festivities. “Homecoming is the most hectic but fun week. The old alumni mascots come back and have the chance to wear the suit again and experience being a mascot again,” Wilma said. The bond between mascots is also an

important one, especially as they act as such central characters to the university. By spending so much time with one another, Wilma and Wilbur have naturally become “best friends from the process,” Wilma said. “Having support from someone else who is experiencing the same things as you makes being a mascot a lot less isolating and provides a support system,” Wilma said. “[…] having someone to talk and relate to provides a supportive environment and turns being a mascot into a more linking experience.” Those interested in being the next Wilma or Wilbur can follow @azwilmawildcat and @azwilburwildcat on Instagram for more information on the tryouts in the spring.

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Pumpkins bring fall joy outdoors Glowing Pumpkins at Tohono Chul is a local attraction both friendly and frightening















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and inside local coffee shops Black Crown Coffee Company

Daily Wildcat photographers tried seasonal treats from around town to inspire your fall endeavors Rollies Mexican Patio

Hillhouse Coffee

Espressoul Cafe


Tucson Coffee Cricket



Gourmet Girls Gluten Free Bakery

Five-To-Oh! Coffee





Screwbean Brewing







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October 2023 • Homecoming and History

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50 years of McKale: 10 of the most iconic basketball moments BY JASON DAYEE The Daily Wildcat

In the heart of the University of Arizona’s campus, where the passion of collegiate sports meets the halls of history, stands McKale Center — a bastion of athletic prowess and the iconic home of the Arizona men’s and women’s basketball teams. Yet, before it became synonymous with thrilling victories and unforgettable moments, the Wildcats played in a different arena. Home games used to take place in Bear Down Gym, a modest structure opened in 1926 that housed the basketball teams. It was a place where dreams took shape and young athletes honed their skills. However, on Feb. 1, 1973, a significant change took place. McKale Center was dedicated to the legacy of J.F. “Pop” McKale, a stalwart figure in Arizona Athletics who served as a longtime UA athletic director and head coach who helped lay the foundation of the UA’s sports. Now, McKale Center celebrates its 50th anniversary. In the storied history of McKale Center, from nail-biting victories to emotional defeats, these moments have etched themselves into the hearts of Wildcat fans and the lore of college sports history. 1. McShot at McKale (Jan. 23, 1986) In McKale Center, Arizona found itself trailing

Oregon State University 62-61 with just 3 seconds left in overtime. The Beavers were a dominant force in West Coast basketball, while Arizona was vying for its first-ever Pac-10 championship. With the final timeout, then-head coach Lute Olson called for a daring play known as the “home run.” Steve Kerr launched a 94-foot pass to a cluster of players near Arizona’s foul line. Arizona forward Anthony Cook deflected Kerr’s long pass, which landed directly in the hands of sophomore guard Craig McMillan. With an open path to the basket, McMillan dribbled twice and made the winning shot. The moment was coined as the “McShot at McKale.” This game would alter the balance of power in the Pac-10, as Arizona went on to win its first conference championship five weeks later against UCLA on the road in Pauley Pavilion. 2. Elliott breaks Lew Alcindor’s scoring record (Feb. 18, 1989) In a showdown against UCLA on a February morning in 1989, Sean Elliott had a plan to make history. He shaved his head for the nationally televised game in McKale Center, where a recordbreaking performance was about to unfold. Elliott’s remarkable game, featuring six 3-pointers and 33 points, led him to surpass Lew Alcindor’s Pac-10 career scoring record of 2,326 points. Arizona’s

resounding 102-64 victory not only celebrated Elliott’s achievement but also solidified his enduring legacy in Wildcat history, with the record-breaking moment coming from a pair of clutch free throws. 3. Losing to UCLA, snapping 71-game streak (Jan. 11, 1992) During Arizona’s 71game winning streak in McKale Center, UCLA had been a recurring victim. It took a careerdefining performance from UCLA forward Don MacLean, who scored 38 points and a Darrick Martin buzzer-beating 10-foot jumper to end the Wildcats’ astonishing streak, securing an 89-87 victory for UCLA with just 1.8 seconds remaining. This game marked the conclusion of Arizona’s 71-game home win streak, which stands as one of the longest in Division I college basketball. The longest streak in history was established by the University of Kentucky from 1943-55, spanning 129 games. 4. The Steve Kerr game (Jan. 20, 1984) On a day when the annual Arizona-ASU game normally took center stage in McKale Center, it was an unexpected hero who stole the spotlight. With the Wildcats struggling at 3-11 and ASU holding a dominant nine-game winning streak against them, few could have


THE ARIZONA WOMEN’S BASKETBALL team celebrates after winning the WNIT championship on April 6, 2019, in Tucson.

foreseen the events that unfolded. The crowd of 10,213 witnessed an emotional moment as Kerr, then a little-known freshman guard, delivered a stunning performance just days after the assassination of his father and the president of the American University of Beirut, Malcolm Kerr. Arizona routed ASU 71-49, ending their rival’s winning streak and igniting a resurgence for the Wildcats. Steve Kerr’s 12 points in 25 minutes without a single turnover marked the beginning of a remarkable run for Arizona men’s basketball, leading to 25 consecutive NCAA Tournament appearances. 5. Stoudamire’s gamewinner vs. UCLA (Jan. 15, 2005) In a thrilling showdown against UCLA, Salim Stoudamire made history with his performance. With the game hanging in the balance, Stoudamire, a lefthanded senior, showcased his incredible scoring prowess. He erupted for 24 points in the second half alone, finishing the game with a staggering 32 points. Stoudamire’s accuracy was impeccable, with a remarkable 9-of-11 shooting in the second half, primarily sinking mid-range jumpers and an impressive 11-for-16 overall. His nerves of steel were on full display as he dribbled up the court and launched a 3-pointer from well beyond the arc with a mere 2.5 seconds left on the clock, sealing the win

for the Wildcats. 6. Arizona shocks Stanford with Bristol’s buzzer-beater (Jan. 12, 1998) In a high-stakes clash, the No. 9 Arizona women’s basketball team pulled off a stunning upset, ending No. 11 Stanford University’s 48-game Pac-10 winning streak with a heartpounding finish. The game came down to the wire and Reshea Bristol delivered the defining moment, sinking a buzzer-beater that secured a 91-90 victory for Arizona. 7. McDonald lifts Arizona over No. 4 Stanford (Feb. 28, 2020) Aari McDonald delivered a clutch layup with just 8.5 seconds remaining in overtime, propelling No. 13 Arizona WBB past No. 4 Stanford to a 73-72 victory. Despite battling a leg injury, McDonald’s resilient performance with 20 points — 13 of which came in the fourth quarter and overtime — secured Arizona’s first-ever win over a top-five team. 8. Derrick Williams’ clutch block (Feb. 19, 2011) No. 12 Arizona pulled off an 87-86 victory over the University of Washington in dramatic fashion. The defining moment came when forward Derrick Williams swatted away Washington’s Darnell Gant’s shot, sending it soaring into McKale Center’s ecstatic white-out crowd. With just 0.2 seconds remaining, the Huskies’ hopes of stealing

a victory were dashed, solidifying this game as one of the most memorable moments in Wildcats history. 9. WNIT championship and record-breaking attendance (April 6, 2019) In a historic Saturday afternoon matchup, Arizona clinched the WNIT championship with a commanding 56-42 victory over Northwestern University in a packed McKale Center. This achievement marked the Wildcats’ second WNIT title, but it was more than just a championship win. The game set an attendance record with 14,644 fans filling the arena, not only celebrating victory but also showcasing the immense support for Arizona women’s basketball. 10. Bob Elliott’s 38 and 25 vs. ASU (Feb. 3, 1974) Arizona’s Bob “Big Bird” Elliott, a towering 6-foot-10 freshman center, put on a dominating performance on the court against the Sun Devils. Finishing the game with 38 points and 25 rebounds against archrival ASU. This exceptional feat snapped a six-game losing streak to the Sun Devils, and Bob Elliott’s 25 rebounds fell just one short of the school record. His scoring output tied as the second-highest by a freshman, matched only by Coniel Norman against BYU in 1973 and trailing Jerryd Bayless’ 39-point game against ASU in 2008.

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Previewing Arizona WBB’s roster ahead of the 2023-24 season Head coach Adia Barnes has overhauled yet again BY NATHANIEL LEVIN The Daily Wildcat

Head coach Adia Barnes and the Arizona women’s basketball team are coming off of a season where they finished 22-10 (11-7 in Pac-12 play) and a second-round exit in the 2023 NCAA Tournament. The 2023-24 Wildcats will look slightly different than the previous season, as several key players have graduated or transferred out of the program. The departures from Arizona were Shaina Pellington, Madison Conner, Lemyah Hylton, Paris Clark, Lauren Fields, Cate Reese, Jade Loville and Lauren Ware, who combined for 66.9% of Arizona’s total points last season. On the other hand, Barnes is bringing in one of the nation’s top recruiting classes, with all four incoming freshmen ranked inside ESPN’s top 100 HoopGurlz Recruiting Rankings. The newcomers include No. 8 Montaya Dew from Centennial High School in Nevada, No. 14 Breya Cunningham and No. 21 Jada Williams from La Jolla Country Day School in California and No. 96 Skylar Jones from Whitney Young High School in Illinois. Unfortunately for the Wildcars, Arizona’s top recruit, Dew, will miss the 2023-24 season due to a knee injury she suffered during practice in early August. “I’ve recruited these players for a long time,” Barnes said.

“I think those freshmen will learn they’ll be thrown into the fire and still get some great experience now.” Former high school teammates, Cunningham and Williams share a unique bond with each other. “Breya [Cunningham] and I have been roommates for the last two years,” Williams said. “We have a sister bond; we fight like sisters, hang out like sisters, and love each other like sisters.” Barnes shared her excitement about the two newcomers. “They are besties; they are like Bonnie and Clyde,” Barnes said. “They complement each other really well and they have great chemistry on the court. Getting them together was the perfect situation for us.” In addition to the four new freshmen, the Wildcats added three transfers into the program: Courtney Blakely from Middle Tennessee State University, Isis Beh from West Virginia University, and Salimatou Kourouma from the University of Arkansas Little Rock. During her sophomore season at Middle Tennessee, Blakely averaged 7.1 points per game and 3.0 rebounds per game, mainly coming off the bench. Beh, another role player, comes to Arizona after spending two seasons at West Virginia, where she averaged 3.1 points per game and 2.1 rebounds per game, after redshirting her first year with the team. The Wildcats also bring in the reigning 2023 Ohio Valley Conference


HELENA PUEYO, A GUARD on the Arizona women’s basketball team runs onto the court as a starter on Nov. 13, 2022, in McKale Center. The wildcats won the game 87-47.

Player of the Year, Kourouma, a 6-foot-2 forward who averaged 17.3 points per game during the 2022-23 season. These additions should help combat the absence of Dew and the eight Wildcats who left the program following the end of the 2022-23 season. As for the returning class, the Wildcats are bringing back some key players vital to the 2022-23 team’s success, including Esmery Martinez, Helena Pueyo, Kailyn Gilbert and Maya Nnaji. A fifth-year senior, Martinez averaged 10.5 points per game and 8.6 rebounds per game with

the Wildcats last year while averaging 25.8 minutes per game. Pueyo was one of Arizona’s best shooters last season, shooting 50.8% from the field while averaging 5.3 points per game and 2.7 assists per game, which ranked second on the team. Gilbert and Nnaji saw limited minutes during their freshman seasons but still averaged 4.9 and 4.4 points per game, respectively. Gilbert and Nnaji should see an increase in their minutes as they enter their sophomore seasons. “Gritty; I think that was a really good descriptive word

because we’re tough and working hard,” Barnes said. “There are many egos, and I think they really are accepting coaching, and they want to get better.” The Wildcats are wellrounded with both young and veteran talent. Barnes’ biggest challenge will be finding minutes for each player as the Wildcats look to improve from their early exit last March and win the Pac-12 in the final year. “We want to leave our mark on the conference,” Gilbert said. “I feel like whoever wins the Pac-12 championship this year holds the Pac-12.”

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Arizona men’s basketball season preview BY AIDAN ALPERSTEIN The Daily Wildcat

Arizona men’s basketball head coach Tommy Lloyd was puzzled last March after his group’s disastrous showing in the first round of the 2023 NCAA Tournament, losing to the 15-seed Princeton University in the first round. The program decided to rebuild throughout the offseason. The first step was parting ways with Kerr Kriisa. The Estonian guard spent three seasons with the program. Lloyd’s main goal was to find an upgrade at the point guard position, specifically a tougher, more physical guard capable of scoring from all three levels. Long-time University of North Carolina guard Caleb Love decided to fill that void after bouncing around in the transfer portal. Love had committed to play for Juwan Howard at the University of Michigan but there were complications with the university’s admissions department, forcing the senior guard back into the portal. The St. Louis, Missouri native ultimately elected to reunite with Arizona assistant coach Steve Robinson, who played a pivotal role in his commitment to the Tar Heels in high school. Love has been one of the country’s most talented guards when it comes to burying shots and playing to his strengths. However, poor shot selection, ill-advised turnovers and occasional selfish playmaking led to a

36% field goal percentage in his three college seasons. Given the prototypical Arizona offense, Love must compensate for his traditional play style. Despite many professional scouts expecting a short college career for Love, there still is hope he can assemble a more efficient senior season in Tucson. He began his college career as a five-star prospect, ranked inside the top 20 according to the ESPN database. What might be the most under-the-radar acquisition is combo guard Jaden Bradley. The sophomore played for Nate Oats in Tuscaloosa, Alabama. His freshman year for the Crimson Tide was a rollercoaster ride, primarily due to a crowded backcourt room. Bradley found himself in the starting lineup alongside Mark Sears throughout the early parts of the season. As conference play in the SEC began to pick up, veteran Jahvon Qunierly caught fire and never looked back. Bradley’s minutes began to diminish as things didn’t go as planned. Nonetheless, an explosive guard who can play on and off the ball with tons of speed and open-court playmaking ability should thrive for Lloyd. Bradley averaged 6.4 points and 3.1 assists in just under 20 minutes a game at Alabama. The 2023-24 Wildcat backcourt will be the most offensively gifted in the Lloyd Arizona era. A critical storyline of the off-season surrounded the departure of Azuolas Tubelis as Keshod Johnson will look to fill this void.


TOMMY LLOYD, THE HEAD coach of the Arizona men’s basketball team, makes his entrance at the Red and Blue game on Sept. 29, in McKale Center. Lloyd was named head coach in April of 2021.

The 6-foot-7, 205-pound forward joined the Wildcat program after his 2023 Final Four run with San Diego State University. Johnson was one of the more versatile forwards in the Mountain West Conference last season. His strong motor and defensive capabilities will be vital for this Wildcat group. Although Johnson will not replace the offensive production of Tubelis, he brings toughness and physicality to the defensive end of the floor, areas where Tubelis lacked. Johnson was the Aztecs’ leading scorer in the National Championship game against the Connecticut Huskies. He finished with 14 points, four rebounds and nine trips to the free-throw line.

Many Wildcat fans have saved many dates on their calendars after the university announced the team’s non-conference schedule a few months ago. The first six weeks before the new year will feature many marquee matchups, one being a trip to historic Cameron Indoor Stadium. The Duke Blue Devils have one of the country’s best backcourts in Jeremy Roach and Tyreese Proctor. The Wildcats will also have three neutral site contests, the first on Thanksgiving Day in Palm Springs, California. Lloyd will share the sidelines with a Naismith Basketball Hall of Fame member, Tom Izzo. Michigan State University will likely be a preseason top-10 team after a 2023

Sweet 16 return and the returning trio of Tyson Walker, A.J. Hoggard and Jaden Akins. One of the final nonconference games will feature Purdue University in Indianapolis at Gainbridge Fieldhouse. This game could be the frontcourt battle of the year with two of the most dominant forwards in Oumar Ballo and Zach Edey. The Purdue center was named the Player of the Year in college basketball last season after posting an impressive 22.3 points, 12.9 rebounds and 2.1 blocks per game. A few calendar days after will be the Bradley revenge game. The Wildcats will take a short trip north and play the University of Alabama at the Footprint Center in

Phoenix. Arizona will also start a home-and-home series with the Wisconsin Badgers. This year’s game will take place inside the McKale Center. The Wildcats will make the trip to Madison, Wisconsin, in 2024. The 2023-24 season will also mark the Wildcats’ last hurrah in the Pac-12 Conference. In August 2023, University of Arizona President Robert C. Robbins announced the Wildcats would join the Big 12 Conference in the fall of 2024. Expectations will be high in Tucson as the Wildcats will look to string together their third consecutive Pac-12 tournament championship while eager for redemption in the NCAA Tournament.

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Jaden Bradley 6’3” Sophomore Guard Rochester N. Y.


Motiejus Krivas 7’2” Freshman Center Siauliai, Lithuania


Filip Borovicanin 15 6’9” Sophomore Forward Belgrade, Serbia


Caleb Love 6’4” Senior Guard St. Louis, Mo.


Keshad Johnson 6’7” Senior Forward Oakland, Calif.


Pelle Larsson 6’5” Senior Guard Nacka, Sweden


Paulius Murauskas 6’8” Freshman Forward Kaunas, Lithuania


Kylan Boswell 6’2” Sophomore Guard Champaign, Ill.


Luke Champion 6’8” Senior Forward Suwanee, Ga.


KJ Lewis 6’4” Freshman Guard El Paso, Texas


Jackson Cook 6’3” Freshman Guard Oxford, England


Oumar Ballo 7’0” Senior Center Koulikoro, Mali


Will Menaugh 6’10” Junior Forward Tucson, Ariz.



Grant Weitman 6’4” Senior Guard Tucson, Ariz.

Will Kuykendall 44 6’3” Freshman Guard Santa Maria, Calif.

Dylan Anderson 7’0” Junior Forward Gilbert, Ariz.


Conrad Martinez 6’0” Freshman Guard Granollers, Spain

Henri Veesaar 7’0” Sophomore Forward Tallinn, Estonia

Arizona | Men’s Basketball | 2023-24 schedule Oct. 20 (Fri) 7:30 pm MST Oct. 30 (Mon) 7:00 pm MST Nov. 6 (Mon) 7:30 pm MST Nov. 10 (Fri) 5:00 pm MST Nov. 13 (Mon) 6:00 pm MST Nov. 17 (Fri) 9:00 pm MST Nov. 19 (Sun) 4:00 pm MST Nov. 23 (Thu) 2:00 pm MST Dec. 2 (Sat) 1:00 pm MST Dec. 9 (Sat) 1:15 pm MST Dec. 16 (Sat) 2:30 pm MST Dec. 20 (Wed) 9:00 pm MST Dec. 23 (Sat) TBD Dec. 29 (Fri) 8:30 pm MST Dec. 31 (Sun) 2:00 pm MST Jan. 4 (Thu) 7:30 pm MST Jan. 6 (Sat) 6:00 pm MST Jan. 13 (Sat) 4:00 pm MST Jan. 17 (Wed) 8:00 pm MST Jan. 20 (Sat) TBD Jan. 25 (Thu) 9:00 pm MST Jan. 27 (Sat) 3:30 pm MST Feb. 1 (Thu) 6:30 pm MST Feb. 4 (Sun) 6:00 pm MST Feb. 8 (Thu) 6:00 pm MST Feb. 10 (Sat) TBD Feb. 17 (Sat) 7:30 pm MST Feb. 22 (Thu) 9:00 pm MST Feb. 24 (Sat) 12:00 pm MST Feb. 28 (Wed) 8:00 pm MST Mar. 2 (Sat) 12:00 pm MST Mar. 7 (Thu) TBD Mar. 9 (Sat) 8:00 pm MST Mar. 13 (Wed) All Day Mar. 14 (Thu) All Day Mar. 15 (Fri) All Day Mar. 16 (Sat) 6 pm MST

vs. Lewis-Clark State vs. New Mexico Highlands vs. Morgan State @ Duke University vs. Southern University vs. Belmont University vs. University of Texas at Arlington @ Michigan State University vs. Colgate University vs. University of Wisconsin @ Purdue University vs. University of Alabama vs. Flordia Atlantic @ University of California @ Stanford University vs. University of Colorado vs. University of Utah @ Washington State University vs. USC vs. UCLA @ Oregon State University @ University of Oregon vs. University of California vs. Stanford University @ University of Utah @ University of Colorado vs. ASU vs. Washington State University vs. University of Washington @ ASU vs. University of Oregon @ UCLA @ USC

Pac-12 Tournament - First Round Pac-12 Tournament - Quarterfinals Pac-12 Tournament - Semifinals Pac-12 Tournament - Championship

McKale Center McKale Center McKale Center Durham, N.C. McKale Center McKale Center McKale Center Palm Desert, Calif. McKale Center McKale Center Indianapolis, Ind. Phoenix Las Vegas, Nev. Berkeley, Calif. Stanford, Calif. McKale Center McKale Center Pullman, Wash. McKale Center McKale Center Corvallis, Ore. Eugene, Ore. McKale Center McKale Center Salt Lake City, Utah Boulder, Colo. McKale Center McKale Center McKale Center Tempe, Ariz. McKale Center Los Angeles, Calif. Los Angeles, Calif. Las Vegas, Nev. Las Vegas, Nev. Las Vegas, Nev. Las Vegas, Nev.

Tommy Lloyd

Jack Murphy

Head Coach

Assistant Head Coach

(Third Season with Arizona) Steve Robinson

Riccardo Fois

Assistant Coach

Assistant Coach

October 2023 • Homecoming and History

wildcat.arizona.edu • A21

2023-24 SCHEDULE + ROSTER Arizona | Women’s Basketball | 2023-24 schedule Oct. 25 (Wed) TBD Nov. 1 (Wed) TBD Nov. 6 (Mon) TBD Nov. 10 (Fri) TBD Nov. 12 (Sun) TBD Nov. 14 (Tue) TBD Nov. 18 (Sat) 11:30 am MST Nov. 19 (Sun) TBD Nov. 20 (Mon) TBD Dec. 2 (Sat) TBD Dec. 7 (Thu) TBD Dec. 13 (Wed) TBD Dec. 17 (Sun) TBD Dec. 20 (Wed) TBD Dec. 31 (Sun) TBD Jan. 5 (Fri) TBD Jan. 7 (Sun) TBD Jan. 12 (Fri) TBD Jan. 14 (Sun) TBD Jan. 19 (Fri) TBD Jan. 19 (Sun) TBD Jan. 26 (Fri) TBD Jan. 28 (Sun) TBD Feb. 2 (Fri) TBD Feb. 9 (Fri) TBD Feb. 11 (Sun) TBD Feb. 16 (Fri) TBD Feb. 18 (Sun) TBD Feb. 23 (Fri) TBD Feb. 25 (Sun) TBD Feb. 29 (Thu) TBD Mar. 2 (Sat) TBD

vs. West Texas A&M McKale Center vs. Point Loma Nazarene University McKale Center @ New Mexico State University Las Cruces, N.M. vs. Northern Arizona University McKale Center vs. Loyola Marymount University McKale Center vs. University of San Diego McKale Center vs. University of Memphis Nassau, Bahamas vs. TBD Nassau, Bahamas vs. TBD Nassau, Bahamas @ University of Navada, Las Vegas Las Vegas, NV vs. UC San Diego McKale Center vs. University of Texas McKale Center @ ASU Tempe, Ariz. @ Gonzaga University Phoenix, Ariz. vs. Seattle University McKale Center vs. UC Boulder / UU McKale Center vs. UC Boulder / UU McKale Center @ UO / OSU Eugene / Corvallis Ore. @ UO / OSU Eugene / Corvallis Ore. @ UW / WSU Seattle/Pullman Wash. @ UW / WSU Seattle/Pullman Wash. vs. UC / SU McKale Center vs. UC / SU McKale Center vs. ASU McKale Center @ UCLA / USC Los Angeles, Calif. @ UCLA / USC Los Angeles, Calif. vs. UW / WSU McKale Center vs. UW / WSU McKale Center @ UC Berkley / SU Berkeley/Palo Alto, Calif. @ UC Berkley / SU Berkeley/Palo Alto, Calif. vs. UCLA / USC McKale Center vs. CLA / USC McKale Center

Preliminary schedule because final schedule was not out at time of this newspapper’s printing

Adia Barnes

Salvo Coppa

Head Coach (Eighth Season with Arizona )

Assistant Coach

Anthony Turner

Bett Shelby

Assistant Coach

Assistant Coach


Courtney Blakely 13 5’8” Junior Guard Gary, Ind.

Helena Pueyo 6’0” Senior Guard Palma de Mallorca, Spain


Jada Williams 5’8” Freshman Guard Kansas City, Mo.


Kailyn Gilbert 5’8” Sophomore Guard Tampa Bay, Fla.


Montaya Dew 6’2” Freshman Forward Las Vegas, Nev.


Maya Nnaji 6’4” Sophomore Forward Hopkins, Minn.


Skylar Jones 6’0” Freshman Guard Chicago, Ill.


Salimatou Kourouma 5’11” Senior Wing Kati, Mali


Esmery Martinez 25 6’2” Senior Forward Hato Mayor Del Ray, Dominican Republic 33

Breya Cunningham 6’4” Freshman Forward Chula Vista, Calif. Isis Beh 6’3” Junior Forward Murray, Utah

A22 • wildcat.arizona.edu

Homecoming and History ● October 2023












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2023 October • Homecoming and History

wildcat.arizona.edu ● A23


Catch up with Arizona football’s past homecoming matchups BY MASON DUHON The Daily Wildcat

Every year sometime between late October and mid-November, the Arizona football team plays their annual homecoming game. The homecoming matchup in this year’s season is against UCLA, and the game kicks off on Saturday, Nov. 4, at Arizona Stadium in Tucson. Since joining the conference in 1978, their homecoming matchups have always been against a Pac-12 (formerly the Pac-8 and Pac-10) foe. The Pac-12 season has historically begun with a three-game slate of non-conference opponents before diving into a nine-game stretch of Pac-12 play to end the season. Arizona has played every other conference team except for ASU in at least one homecoming game, and the upcoming matchup against UCLA will be their eighth homecoming appearance in Tucson.

Recent History

Arizona is 3-2 in their last five homecoming matchups, with impressive wins coming over the No. 19 University of Oregon in 2018 and No. 15 Washington State University in 2017. Also, the 2021 slugfest victory over the University of California Berkeley that ended 10-3 was Arizona’s sole win of the season. The 2022 season saw No. 10 USC led by Heisman Trophy-winning

quarterback Caleb Williams come to town. Even though Arizona fell short, losing 4537, they kept it competitive and the game ended as a one-score game. The most disappointing loss in recent memory was in 2019, where the Wildcats fell to an Oregon State University team that finished the season at 5-7 in a 56-38 defeat.

UCLA matchups

Arizona has faced UCLA the most in homecoming games since joining the Pac-12, with the upcoming matchup being the eighth. Arizona is 4-3 in these games, which is tied for the most wins against any homecoming opponent. UCLA homecomings tend to be close affairs, with four of the seven ending as onescore games. Most recently, Arizona lost 31-26 back in 2013 to a No. 10-ranked Bruins team. Arizona’s most recent win was in 2007, where they won 34-27. The 2005 matchup was Arizona’s best performance. They were hosting a UCLA team that was ranked at No. 7 in the nation while the Wildcats were just 2-6 on the season. Despite being underdogs at home and hosting an undefeated team, the Wildcats showed out and served up a 52-14 shellacking. This game was one of three wins on the season for the Wildcats and one of just two losses for the Bruins, who finished the season at No. 16 in the AP Poll. The 1980 homecoming win was also impressive

when the 2-4 Wildcats upset No. 2 UCLA 23-17. Arizona’s largest margin of victory was the 38-point win over No. 7 UCLA in 2005. Their largest margin of defeat came just four years prior in 2001, where UCLA put on a clinic in Tucson in a 37-7 loss for the Wildcats.

Common matchups

Arizona has played three teams in six homecoming games: the University of Washington, Washington State and Oregon State. Washington State has done the worst of the three against the Wildcats historically and is tied with UCLA for the most wins allowed to Arizona at four. Washington State was Arizona’s first Pac-12 homecoming matchup in 1978, and Arizona won 31-24. The Wildcats are 4-2 in these matchups against the Cougars, with the most recent homecoming matchup being back in 2017 where Arizona handed No. 15 Washington State a 58-37 beatdown. Arizona’s last loss to Washington State was in 2015, where the Cougars narrowly escaped with a 45-42 win. Oregon State has split the homecoming series 3-3 with Arizona, with the most recent matchup being the aforementioned 2019 tilt where an unranked Oregon State blew the doors off the lowly Wildcats. Arizona lost the previous two homecoming matchups in 2000 (33-9) and 2004 (28-14) as well. Arizona’s last win over Oregon State was in


MICHAEL WILEY, A SOPHOMORE on the Arizona football team, runs up the middle for the only touchdown of the day on Nov. 6, 2021, at Arizona Stadium. The Wildcats went on to win the game 10-3, snapping the 20 game losing streak.

1997 when the Wildcats took home a comfortable 27-7 victory. Matchups against Washington tend to get strange, with Arizona leading the homecoming series 3-2-1. Washington is the only team that Arizona has tied within a homecoming game, with the 21-21 affair happening in 1987. This was one of three ties in the legendary Dick Tomey’s first year as head coach where Arizona finished 4-4-3 on the season. The last matchup was a 44-14 drumming of the Jake Locker-led Huskies by the Wildcats in 2010. Before that was a narrow 27-22 victory in 2003 that was one of just two wins on the season. Washington

also holds the honor of being the only No. 1-ranked team to play in an Arizona homecoming from back in 1992. However, the No. 12-ranked Wildcats pulled off the 16-3 upset in front of more than 58,000 fans.

Other fun facts

Arizona is winless against two opponents: the University of Utah and USC. Utah has only played in one homecoming game, and they handed the Wildcats a 34-21 loss back in 2011. USC, however, has always had Arizona’s number and the Wildcats are 0-5 in homecoming matchups when the Trojans come to town. USC has been ranked inside the top 20 every single time and

Arizona has lost four out of five matchups by just one touchdown. The worst defeat came in 1989 when No. 9 USC handed Arizona a 24-3 beatdown. Arizona is also undefeated against two opponents: the University of Colorado Boulder and Cal. Colorado appeared in the 2012 and 2014 matchups, and Arizona handled business both times. The Wildcats won in a 56-31 shootout in 2012 and a 38-20 victory in 2014 for a 2-0 record in the series. Arizona is 3-0 in the homecoming series against Cal. Most recently was the 10-3 win in 2021, but they also defeated No. 8 Cal 24-20 in 2006 and won 13-6 in 1994.

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‘Two steps forward’; UA community remembers life of professor Meixner The school honored his memory with a memorial held exactly one year after his on-campus murder BY KATE EWING The Daily Wildcat

“The first step in the journey towards healing is realizing you’re not alone,” Christopher Castro said from the podium inside St. Thomas More Newman Catholic Center during the memorial service for University of Arizona professor Thomas Meixner, Thursday, Oct. 5. Castro took over as the interim head of the school’s hydrology department after Meixner was shot and killed on campus last year. “Part of remembering Oct. 5 is also acknowledging the trauma we experienced. There were so many impacted by this event,” Castro said. “I [learned] processing trauma and grief is different and personal for everyone.” Members of the community

gathered inside of the Newman Center for the nondenominational memorial service at noon, some holding battery powered candles to be switched on in Meixner’s memory. From 10 a.m. to 4:30 p.m., the public was invited to attend any part of the event and to sign a book of remembrance to be gifted to the Meixner family. The UA’s Office of Presidential Events & University Ceremonies partnered with the hydrology department to plan the memorial service, including a spotlight set up outside of the Gould-Simpson building for 24 hours. During his speech at the service, Castro said he worked with Meixner for several years as a colleague and the two became close friends, interacting almost daily in their respective roles in the hydrology department. He


THE UNIVERSITY OF ARIZONA hosts a memorial for professor Thomas Meixner on Oct. 5, at St. Thomas More Catholic Newman Center. The non-denominational service honored the life of Meixner on the first anniversary of his death on campus in 2022.

described Meixner as cheerful and speaking with a booming voice, always sporting colorful UA T-shirts. Castro said the most important dimension in Meixner’s life was his role as a devoted father to his two sons Sean and Brendan, and husband to his wife Kathleen Cotter Meixner. “We must reckon ourselves to the fact that [Meixner’s] was a beautiful life cut short in an act of horrific gun violence,” Castro said. He added that gun violence is a fact of daily life in the U.S. and people cannot be bystanders hoping for the best as similar tragedies continue to happen “year after year.” Castro said Meixner used his expertise to lead research on water from an intersection of hydrology and biogeochemistry standpoint, devotedly teach future generations of students in his field and work closely with other UA departments and colleges. “One of the last acts he performed was to teach a class,” Castro said. Meixner received his doctorate in hydrology and water resources at the University of Arizona in 1999 and returned to the UA later on, where he was department head for Hydrology and Atmospheric Sciences, according to his obituary. Castro said his journey with grief after the shooting has been difficult, especially the first few months. Bouts of crying suddenly, an acute struggle with survivor’s guilt, Post Traumatic Stress Disorder and feeling unlike himself as a teacher were all


PEOPLE OFFER MENTAL HEALTH services, event programs and electric candles outside the St. Thomas More Catholic Newman Center for Thomas Meixner’s memorial Thursday, Oct. 5. The memorial was hosted by the University of Arizona exactly one year after Meixner’s death on campus.

realities that earmarked the time after Meixner’s death. He said that healing from the pain and tragedy was still an ongoing grieving process that felt like moving two steps forward, one step back. He said bad days are pinpointed by colleagues and friends crying in his office behind closed doors — but in light of it all, the hydrology department has carried on. Castro encouraged anyone in attendance to reach out for mental and psychological support if they were struggling and to not be ashamed of asking for help. Outside the doors to the sanctuary, staff from UA Campus Health and UA Counseling and Psych Services were present and prepared to offer mental health support to anyone impacted by

the event. CAPS offered at its table pamphlets about resources available to the community and tiny bottles of bubbles with caps labeled “mental health matters” in bold letters. Castro closed his speech by sharing the importance of continuing Meixner’s work and answering questions about where the Southwest will obtain its water and existing in more extreme climates. He shared an anecdote about the hydrology department welcome event at the Chinese Cultural Center last month. He described it as a good day, one that embraced community and where smiles were shared. “In the past year resilience has taken on a completely new meaning,” Castro said. “Two steps forward.”

October 2023 • Homecoming and History

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What to know about the newest COVID-19 vaccine, where to get it BY KANISHKA CHINNARAJ The Daily Wildcat

One of the many things to do this fall season to protect our health is to take advantage of the new COVID-19 vaccine and the free COVID-19 testing kit initiative by the federal government, which returned last month in September. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention recommend everyone who has not had a COVID-19 shot in the last two months get the updated vaccine. There has been a recent uptick in COVID-19 cases throughout Arizona since the beginning of August. The Arizona Department of Health Services has reported 3,134 new cases from Sept. 24 through Oct. 1. The new COVID-19 vaccine is free for most Americans through their private health insurance, and Arizonans under Medicare and Medicaid — Aizona Health Care Cost Containment System — will receive the vaccine at no cost. Those wishing to receive the vaccine can visit their local pharmacy or healthcare provider with their insurance card to receive the vaccine. Uninsured individuals can also access free vaccines through the CDC’s Bridge Access Program, vaccines.gov or by calling 1-800232-0233, which can help people locate available vaccination centers in their area. Along with this, the Bridge Access Program can also provide free updated COVID-19 vaccinations for adults and children who are uninsured or underinsured; the only information required are name and date of birth. To learn more about the locations of the health departments, view Pima.gov


GLENDA PEREZ DRAWS UP a COVID-19 vaccine at the University of Arizona vaccination clinic Monday, Sept. 19, 2022. UA students have the opportunity to get tested for COVID-19 at Campus Health, which will have the newest vaccine available as well soon.

and check under the COVID-19 information and resources section. There are options for everyone to have access to the updated COVID-19 vaccine at no additional cost, so make sure to bring in your COVID-19 vaccination card when going in to get the vaccine! Every household can have access to four testing kits by ordering through COVIDTests. gov, which started Sept. 25. The test kits can detect the currently circulating COVID-19 variants and are intended for use until the end

of the year. The only information required to order the test kits includes: one’s name, shipping address and email for delivery confirmation. You will not be required to input any credit card or bank information, as it will be shipped to the given address free of cost. Another option for free testing this fall is some local pharmacies at CVS and Walgreens, as there are no-cost antigen and PCR tests available in more than 15,000 cities across the country, according to CBS News.

The Pima County Health Department also has a testing center at Abrams Public Health Center for rapid tests at no cost, along with the distribution of free self-test kits at multiple locations across the county. For more information regarding the times and location sites, visit Pima.gov and check under the COVID-19 information and resources section. If you purchase COVID-19 test kits, know that many private health insurance plans may not cover COVID-19 testing kit

costs, so contact your insurance provider for plan details and verify coverage. Take advantage of the federal program and get the COVID-19 kits through the winter months. The University of Arizona is also doing its part to make the test kits and vaccines available for students. Through the UA’s partnership with the Pima County Health Department, the university was “able to distribute 300 tests so far from September, available on the welcome table on Campus Health, but they are on a limited basis, so we distribute them as fast as we can when we get them from the County,” said David Salafsky, executive director of Campus Health. Along with this, the UA has test kits for purchase at the pharmacy for about $12 each. Campus Health “will be administering the COVIDupdated Moderna vaccine. Once we get access we will be updating our Campus Health website to allow students to register for vaccines,” Salafsky said. But it is important to note that the new vaccines are through a commercial process, according to Salafsky, “so if you have insurance they are covered 100% under preventative care” and should make sure to bring your insurance cards when going to the testing sites. For those under Medicaid and Medicare, there will be no costs for the vaccine. Those who are uninsured have access to free vaccines under the Bridge Access Program throughout Pima County. “At the end of the day, the goal is to get everyone vaccinated; anyone who wants a vaccine can get one without any pocket costs,” Salafsky said.

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Homecoming and Histroy ● October 2023

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wildcat.arizona.edu • A27

October 2023 • Homecoming and History


Cultural centers are the backbone of the UA’s most diverse class yet BY SAM ELLIS The Daily Wildcat

This fall, the University of Arizona saw the largest and most diverse incoming class yet. 49% of incoming students self-identify as an ethnicity other than white: this marks an increase of 2% from fall 2022 and 4% from fall 2021. More specifically, there was a 28% increase in the number of first-year Native American students, 12% increase in firstyear Black or African American students and a 10% increase in first-year Hispanic or Latinx students. With the admittance of a large class of diverse students, it’s important for the university to have support systems in place to retain such a diverse student population through their graduation. “My concern with recruiting diverse students is, ‘how are we retaining them?’” said Jamaica DelMar, interim director of African American student affairs. Four year graduation rates for self-identifying Black or African American students have shown a decreasing trend. University Analytics & Institutional Research shows that from the incoming class of fall 2016 students, 40.9% graduated in four years, but that dropped to 26.6% from the incoming class of fall 2018. These low graduation rates may be due to a lot of factors and can be a difficult issue to address, but the cultural and resource centers are doing a lot to retain a diverse student body. African American Student Affairs, housed in the Dr. Martin

Luther King Jr. building on campus, has resources available for students, including but not limited to Think Tank tutors, an embedded CAPS counselor, programming to address mental health issues and racial trauma and groups to retain and graduate men and women of color. AASA is also very involved in the Building Leaders and Creating Knowledge living learning community, through which they provide workshops, speakers and community events. The art featured in the MLK building was selected by students, emphasizing the center’s commitment to student engagement and representation. “Higher [education] spaces weren’t historically built for Black folks, period, so this is the only building on campus where you can walk in as a young Black person and see yourself reflected and affirmed and celebrated in every room,” DelMar said. The UA only has graduation rate data from as recently as the incoming fall class of 2018, who graduated in spring 2022. A lot is going on in these cultural centers, but the university will only be able to see the statistical impact of their work once more students graduate in the coming years. Constant changes in leadership have made it difficult for the cultural and resource centers. “Something that has been challenging is the change in leadership, the change in organizational structure that the cultural and resource centers have been experiencing over the past maybe five or more years,” said Dominique Calza, director

of the Adalberto & Ana Guerrero Student Center. These difficulties indicate a continuing problem of administration not being as supportive as they could be with letting the centers know that they’re actively working toward stability. Despite this, the centers continue passionately supporting their students. “Everything that we do is about retaining and graduating students, wanting students to be successful personally, socially, academically. I think a big part of that is building community and increasing that sense of belonging for students,” Calza said. Much like AASA, other cultural and resource centers also have Think Tank tutors, embedded CAPS counselors, financial peer advisors, THRIVE peer mentors and programing for mental health and wellness. “The MLK building, they have a lot of events that go on, and I feel like that was one of the ways that I was able to connect with many friends [...] I was able to use that building as a spot to study and get to know people and do events there” said Nadiya Myers, a first generation freshman in the B.L.A.C.K. living learning community. Although Myers said that starting the school year was a little hard, through AASA and the B.L.A.C.K living learning community, she has found plenty of resources and clubs that she can connect with to help her through. Students can learn more about the seven cultural and resource centers on campus at the Office of Diversity and Inclusion website at diversity.arizona.edu.


THE DR. MARTIN LUTHER KING JR. building houses African American Student Affairs, one of the University of Arizona’s cultural and resource centers. The building can be found on the intersection of Mountain Avenue and Second Street on campus.


THE NUGENT BUILDING HOUSES Native American Student Affairs, one of the University of Arizona’s cultural and resource centers. The building can be found across the UA Mall from the Student Union Memorial Center on campus.

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October 2023 • Homecoming and History

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Biosphere 2 offers unparalleled environmental replication, unique scientific research BY SAM PARKER The Daily Wildcat

Nestled in the foothills of the Catalina Mountains, around 31 miles from Tucson, there exists an oasis; a collection of environments one would never anticipate to exist in the scorched Arizona desert. From a vivid (and often suffocatingly humid) rainforest to a serene and salty ocean, Biosphere 2 is a gateway into a new world. Biosphere 2 is a one-of-akind research facility located five miles southwest of Oracle, Arizona, and is home to five distinct biomes that replicate environmental conditions and further environmental research. At a time of increased climate urgency, the facility began making strides in climate change research and studied topics ranging from coral reef restoration to agrivoltaics. The biosphere conducts research that can be done “nowhere else in the world,” according to John Adams, deputy director and chief operations officer of Biosphere 2. Mere minutes and footsteps separate the saturated wetlands, the parched desert and the scenic savanna from each other. The realism of each environment is a testimony to the vast amounts of time and energy scientists at the biosphere put into making these environments feel as realistic as possible. As Adams acknowledged, these biomes are not analogues, but still represent the closest thing to replications of environments on Earth. “They are representative systems similar to those that you might find here on Earth, but, importantly, they’re not analogues. There are no true analogues to Earth,” Adams said. “This allows us at a much larger scale with a more complex

system to be able to capture some fundamental processes and then understand the mechanisms that tie soil, plant and atmospheric interactions together.”

Addressing climate change In the months and years to come, especially as the urgency for climate action increases and the University of Arizona implements its Sustainability & Climate Action Plan, this unique capacity for experimentation at Biosphere 2 will take on an even more significant role in furthering climate change research. According to Adams, the university understands the capabilities of using a facility like the biosphere to address climate questions. “The UA saw an opportunity to build and construct the institutional experiment that really, across the disciplines, was addressing a problem that we refer to as these ‘grand challenges’: questions that are not going to be resolved by any single discipline but are going to require a multidisciplinary approach,” Adams said. The ability to manipulate certain factors in these separate biomes creates an opportunity to study and make sense of environmental conditions that, in many cases, are impossible in the field. “It allows us at a much larger scale with a more complex system to be able to capture some of those fundamental processes, to then understand the mechanisms that tie soil, plant and atmosphere interactions together, and then to be able to make large-scale manipulations which we’re not able to make when they’re in the field. So, Biosphere 2 is this middle ground, we’re a scaling tool. We’re essentially a facility that allows a much larger


BIOSPHERE 2, LOCATED AT 32540 S. Biosphere Road in Oracle, Arizona, is open every day (except Thanksgiving and Christmas) from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. For more information, go to biosphere2.org.

magnifying glass on some of these fundamental processes,” Adams said. The implications of the environmental research done at this facility are felt not just within its glass-domed walls, but in areas across the globe. For example, in the rainforest biome, the ability to mimic an environment has fueled years of important research; currently, aided by a grant from the Arizona Institute for Resilience, researchers are looking at the effect of temperature on trees in the upper canopy level of the rainforest. “Biosphere 2 is the hottest rainforest canopy on the planet. The maximum temperature that we have measured in the upper canopy here is about 140 Fahrenheit, or about […] 56

degrees centigrade,” said Joost van Haren, interim director of rainforest research at Bisophere 2. “One of the grad students from ASU, Madeline Moran, has been measuring the critical temperatures for these leaves inside Biosphere 2, and we find temperatures about 8-10 degrees Fahrenheit higher than what people measure in the real world, suggesting that trees can acclimate when they’re exposed to higher temperatures [...]. I think still we have this window at being able to recreate conditions that are not happening right now that are happening likely in the next 100-200 years.” With studies like those being done in the rainforest, researchers at Biosphere 2 are, in some ways, able to predict the future, a skill that is reflected

by the facility’s ultramodern building structures pulled straight from the pages of a science fiction novel.

Expanding other research While it might be challenging for students in Tucson to relate to issues affecting tropical rainforests, van Haren noted that ecosystems like the rainforest and the desert are more closely intertwined than one might initially think. The implications of heat, extreme weather or other climate-related elements on the tropical rainforest can also have a dramatic impact on desert environments like that of Tucson. “If we would lose the whole CONTINUED ON PAGE 30

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“We can overcome what seems impossible to overcome.” CONTINUED FROM PAGE 29

Amazon rainforest basin, for instance, like some models have predicted,” van Haren said, there could be “massive cascading effects on climates around the world in different locations.” Effects could include places

changing to become wetter or drier than they are now. “There are very strong linkages between climate and, again, because the Amazon Basin is such a large area it can really have a disproportionate effect on the global climate,” he said. The rainforest also offers vast potential for resources in the field

of medicine. “If you’re interested in medicine and so forth, for instance, certain cancer medicines, the only real effective medication that we have for malaria comes out of tropical forests from tropical trees,” van Haren said. “The chemistry of tropical trees is actually still a relatively untapped resource for us, that could help us with all kinds of medications down the road. So if you’re medically inclined, tropical forests should be of interest as well to you in that regard.”

Inspiring the next generation


BIOSPHERE 2 HAS MULTIPLE biomes inside of it, including one that replicates a rainforest. Currently, this biome is helping researchers track the effect of temperature on trees in the upper canopy level of the rainforest.

This capacity for environmental replication at the biosphere has the power not just to harness new scientific discoveries, but also to inspire the next generation of climate scientists, according to Hunter Gibbs, a UA student and director of Project Rethink Climate, who facilitates field trips to Biosphere 2 for students. “What the biosphere shows is that we have such a deep understanding of climate and ecosystems that we can literally replicate ourselves what took 4 1/2 billion years to make,” Gibbs said. “And if we could do that, and we put our minds together and we are convicted in our passion for the environment, then we can do anything, we can overcome what seems impossible to overcome.” Through Project Rethink Climate, Gibbs was able to provide a tangible measure of the impact the facility had on student outlook as it pertained to climate change, offering a survey that asked about their climate optimism before and after their trip to Biosphere 2. “Students’ optimism for the outlook on climate on a scale of 1 to 10 was about 4.7. And even

after the tour, on average that went up to about 6.2. So seeing that jump of 1.5 points, just from that tour, is a testament to the potential we can have on these students getting increasingly confident in their beliefs and increasingly confident that they can have a change and make a change just off of one afternoon,” Gibbs said.

Research beyond planet Earth While this climate research is an especially prevalent point of public discourse, Biosphere 2 does more than just look at Earth’s environment and climate effects: it goes above and beyond (literally), furthering the field of human spaceflight research. The Space Analog for the Moon and Mars is a flashback to the origin of the Biosphere 2 facility: built around the 1987 Biosphere 2 Test Module, SAM is a unique, hermetically sealed environment that offers the closest thing a person can get to living on Mars. “SAM basically took what was the prototype before they built Biosphere 2, they refer to it as a test module, and they’ve gone through and renovated that facility, brought it back into sort of a workable state because it hadn’t been used for some period of time,” Adams said. “And now what they’ve created is a hermetically sealed environment, an airtight environment where you can run simulations and test ideas, concepts, instrumentation and tools that could potentially be used in space first here before you attempt to take them into space.” Visiting research teams are able to propose projects to conduct in SAM. These projects can range in fields from “biology, plant physiology, regolith chemistry

and soil ecology, food cultivation, AI and robotics, personal psychology, tool use, haptics, and habitation studies to name a few,” according to Biosphere 2. The UA has long been a leader in space research, and the recent Space Act Agreement between the UA and NASA will provide more opportunities for the university to engage in space flight research. The Space Analog for the Moon and Mars is a prime target for future collaborations in this field. Led by Kai Staats, research director for SAM, the analog offers the potential to train astronauts headed to the moon or Mars. “Now there’s continued discussions about what it’s going to take to get back into space. And how do we have humans in space? How do we become an interplanetary species? And so this, I think, is very complementary to what the university is going to be pushing for because we’re going to see greater emphasis and greater research opportunities in this arena,” Adams said. “And so this is a tool that we have that very few other institutions have that will allow us to uniquely address questions that will hopefully allow us to become an interplanetary species and allow the University of Arizona to be, you know, set as a leader in this research arena.” For more information on Biosphere 2, including visiting hours and how to buy tickets, go to biosphere2.org. The website also has multiple sections dedicated to research done at and plans for Biosphere 2. “It’s a really unique opportunity to work in the world’s largest controlled environment that is dedicated to understanding the resiliency of ecosystems under the future threat of climate change,” Adams said.

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October 2023 • Homecoming and History

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32 • The Daily Wildcat

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