TUCSON, AZ — When Jedd Fisch arrived on the University of Arizona campus, he brought the mantra “It’s Personal” with him, and that was on full display at the Wildcats spring football game Saturday.
“The energy like this is contagious, and I hope you all can recognize it with the players and the coaches and the way they’ve been conducting themselves and how they played out here today,” said Wildcats legend Tedy Bruschi, a Super Bowl champion and now a special advisor to Fisch.
There certainly was a buzz at Arizona Stadium with fans back in attendance and alumni reconnected with the program, headlined by honorary coaches Tedy Bruschi and Rob Gronkowski.
“The alumni having our back and being here and supporting us. Getting Gronk and Bruschi back here was nice to have them here,” said Wildcats junior receiver Stanley Berryhill III. “You could feel the buzz around the program already and I think it’s just going to keep building as we go.”
There’s certainly never going to be a shortage of personality or fun when Gronk is involved, between the bag of trick plays dialed up early and often, or the water balloon fight with the student section mid-game.
Standing at the 50-yard line Gronkowski caught a football from a helicopter, and set a world record while doing so.
Gronkowski's catch was from 620 feet up in the air, which is a new world record for 'Highest Altitude Catch of an American Football' that is now under review by the Guinness World Records.
The current record stands at 563 feet.
But back to football, Coach Fisch what did you think of your team’s execution this afternoon?
“I don’t know, I feel like I was a little too busy spraying the student section with a hose and water balloons halfway through the game,” Fisch said. “We did a lot of stuff we’re not going to be doing in the fall, so I’m not going to spend too much time reviewing this film.”
Okay, so the spring game was about fun, and it ended with a Gronk spike in the end zone, a 17-13 victory for Team Gronkowski over Team Bruschi.
“I was to out-coached by Gronk. Does anybody think that? Heck no I didn’t get out-coached,” Bruschi said with a laugh. “It was fun. I’m glad Rob came back. I told him, ‘I can’t catch a ball 600 feet out of a helicopter, but we both love the Wildcats with all our hearts. Us coming back, I hope it signals the energy of this program and how we all feel about it, all the former Wildcats.”
Time will tell if the fun and excitement will translate to wins on the field, but Fisch has already addressed some of the glaring issues from the Kevin Sumlin era, so what’s next?
“Now it’s time to get to work,” Fisch said. “Summertime will be a big one for us.”
Now the Wildcats turn their eyes to fall camp. The next time we’ll see them in game action? September 4 against BYU at Allegiant Stadium in Las Vegas, game #1 of the Jedd Fisch Era.