Arizona Wildcats Overview

Fast facts

League: Division I (NCAA)

Head Coach: Tommy Lloyd

Team Mascot: Wilma Wildcat, Wilbur Wildcat

Year Opened: 1973

Capacity: 14655

City / State: Tucson / Arizona

Rivalries & Top Games to Attend

Arizona Wildcats vs Arizona State Sun Devils

Rival Team: Arizona State Sun Devils

Arizona and Arizona State play for the Territorial Cup in football, and things are just as heated when the two meet on the hardwood. The rivalry between the two schools began on the court long before they two met in football and dates back to 1913. The Wildcats have gotten the better of the Sun Devils throughout most of the series holding a 149-83 lead in the all-time series, but you’ll still be in for a treat when attending an Arizona-Arizona State game.

Arizona Wildcats vs UCLA Bruins

Rival Team: UCLA Bruins

There wasn’t much of a rivalry between the Arizona and UCLA before Lute Olson took over the Wildcats with the Bruins winning 21 of the first 23 meetings. Since Olson’s arrival, the Wildcats became regular contenders for the conference championship creating a fierce rivalry between the two schools. If you want to catch an important Pac-12 matchup, then make sure to be in attendance when the Wildcats and Bruins square off.

Arizona Wildcats Stadium Guide

In Game

The McKale Center is home to an incredible student section and an excellent band making it a great place to take in a college basketball game. The Zona Zoo is one of the loudest and rowdiest student sections in the country. They give opponents hell and lift up their team with their cheers and chants. The Pride of Arizona Pep Band also is a fundamental component of the electric atmosphere found inside the McKale Center as they give cues the Zona Zoo throughout the contest.

The tributes to Arizona greats of the past around the arena also go a long way in creating a fun atmosphere. Everywhere you look, you’ll find banners honoring the best players and teams in Wildcats history. You can even stop by the Hall of Champions before the game and see tributes to legends from other sports teams as well. Arrive early, so you can soak it all in when attending a game at the McKale Center.

There are also plenty of bars and restaurants nearby the McKale Center, so you won’t go home hungry or thirsty. Dirtbags, on the east side of campus, is a must for anyone visiting Tucson and other nearby eateries like Trident and 1702 are worth checking out as well.

You’ll have a fantastic time taking in a game at the McKale Center where the Zona Zoo and the Pride of Arizona Pep Band create an incredible atmosphere that every college basketball fan should experience at least once.

Things to check out

Hall of Champions

When attending a Wildcats basketball game, make sure to stop by the Hall of Champions before the game. The Hall of Champions is a great place to learn more about the history of Arizona athletics and is home to tributes to all of the best athletes in Wildcats history.

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Retired Numbers and Championship Banners

Hanging from the rafters of the McKale Center are banners honoring all of the best Wildcats players and teams from over the years. The 1997 National Championship banner takes center stage and is a must see for anyone wanting to relive the greatest moment in Arizona basketball history.

Bear Down

It’s included in the field design, the fight song, and many posters and t-shirts, but the traditional slogan has a deeper historical meaning. Student body president and quarterback John “Button” Salmon was in a severe auto accident in 1926. On his deathbed, he told coach Pop McKale, “Tell them… tell the team to bear down.” The slogan continues today as a great way to meet and connect with fellow Wildcat fans.

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Zona Zoo

The Zona Zoo remains one of the most raucous student sections in college basketball, and will spend the majority of the game standing and cheering their lungs out. Enjoy the pride and passion of the Zona Zoo when attending a Wildcats basketball game.

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The Pride of Arizona Pep Band

The Pride of Arizona Pep Band does an excellent job of setting the tone at an Arizona basketball game. The band kicks things off by playing “Bear Down Arizona” and saying hello to the fans before the game. After their introduction you can hear the band riling up the crowd with throughout the game, so listen to the band and join in on the cheers.

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White Out Game

Every year Arizona will hold one game where everyone dresses in white. White out games give the Wildcats an even greater home court advantage and are a lot of fun to take part in, so make sure to wear white when attending a white out at the McKale Center.

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Wilbur and Wilma

Wilbur and Wilma are the Arizona mascots, and they do a fantastic job of entertaining the crowd. The pair get into a lot of shenanigans and lead a variety of cheers, so keep an eye out for them at the game.

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“Ooh-Aah” Man

The “Ooh-Aah” Man has been a big part of Arizona basketball games since the 1980s and leads the crowd in the spelling of “A-R-I-Z-O-N-A.” Following that chant, he then directs the fans in the chanting of “U of A.” Join in on the chants to give the Wildcats as much support as possible.

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Fight Songs

  1. Bear Down Arizona

    Bear Down, Arizona
    Bear Down, red and Blue
    Bear Down, Arizona
    Hit ’em hard, let ’em know who’s who;
    Bear Down, Arizona
    Bear Down, Red and Blue
    Go, go, Wildcats, go;
    Arizona, Bear Down

  2. All Hail, Arizona

    Arizona’s alma mater sung after the game

    All hail, Arizona! Thy colors Red and Blue
    Stand as a symbol – of our love for you.
    All hail, Arizona! To thee we’ll be true
    We’ll watch o’er and keep you, All hail! All hail!

  3. Fight Wildcats, Fight!

    Hail Arizona Wildcats
    Fighting for old UA.
    A raging team of Wildcats
    Growling for the fray
    There’s not a team can stop them
    When the ball goes into play
    So Fight! Team!
    Fight with all your might
    And win today.

    Fight Wildcats, Fight for
    We’re with you ever staunch
    And true
    This day we hail you and we
    cheer you
    They can’t defeat the Red
    And Blue
    Circle the ends and crash
    Through center
    Hit hard and gain on ev’ry play
    Fight Wildcats!
    Fight! Fight! Fight!
    We’ll win today!

  4. Foul Chant

    After an opponent commits a foul the Zona Zoo chants, “ You! You! You! You! You! You! You! You! You! On you, that's who!” and if it’s a shooting foul they chant “Hey! Hey! Hey! Hey! No no no no! No no no no! No no no no! No no no no! Don't touch me!” Join in the chant to get into the opponents’ heads and propel the Wildcats to victory.

    You! You! You! You! You! You! You! You! You! On you, that’s who!

    Hey! Hey! Hey! Hey! No no no no! No no no no! No no no no! No no no no! Don’t touch me!

  5. Foul Out

    When an opposing player fouls out, the band plays Queen’s “Another One Bites the Dust” followed by the yell,"Hey! We're gonna get you too!" and chants of, “left, right...” until the player sits down and they yell, “Sit down!”

    Another One Bites the Dust

    Hey! We’re gonna get you too!

    left, right…

    Sit down!

  6. End of Game Chants

    When the Wildcats are blowing out opponents fans tell the opposing to “Warm up the Bus.” If an opponent manages to make a play, then members of the Zona Zoo will let them know that “It just doesn’t matter!”

    Warm up the Bus

    It just doesn’t matter!

Arizona Wildcats Bars & Restaurants

  1. Risky Business

    beer bottles

    Risky Business is Tucson’s favorite family restaurant and sports bar.

    6866 E Sunrise Dr, Tucson, AZ 85750, USA


    Bar website

    sportsbar - $$

  2. The Shanty

    The Shanty

    One of the nicest outdoor patio in town and one of the 5 oldest liquor licenses in T-town!

    401 E 9th St, Tucson, AZ 85705, USA


    Bar website

    american - $

  3. Texas Roadhouse


    Lively chain steakhouse serving American fare with a Southwestern spin amid Texas-themed decor.

    170 S Wilmot Rd, Tucson, AZ 85711, USA


    Bar website

    american - bbq - steakhouse - $$

  4. Barrio Brewing

    Barrio Brewing beer

    Rustic-chic brewpub with well-known happy-hour specials, shuffleboard & up to 12 house beers on tap.

    800 E 16th St, Tucson, AZ 85719, USA


    Bar website

    american - $$

  5. Illegal Pete’s

    House of Wings Sportsbar Beer 3rd Base Sports Bar Beer Kilroys Beer

    Our food. Your taste buds. A match made in culinary heaven.

    876 E University Blvd, Tucson, AZ 85719, USA


    Bar website

    american - $

  6. Sky Bar

    Sky Bar

    Solar-powered cafe by day, astronomy by night.

    536 N 4th Ave, Tucson, AZ 85705, USA


    Bar website

    american - cafe - $

  7. Gentle Ben’s

    Gentle Bens

    Good Food. Good Beer. Good People. Good Times.

    865 E University Blvd, Tucson, AZ 85719, USA


    Bar website

    american - $$

  8. Trident Grill


    Neighborhood watering hole with menu of seafood, burgers & pub grub near the University of Arizona.

    2033 E Speedway Blvd, Tucson, AZ 85719, USA


    Bar website

    american - bbq - $$

  9. Dirtbag’s


    Besides fun times and memorable experiences, Dirtbag’s has offered the perfect balance of fine-crafted cocktails and savory, tasty food options.

    1800 E Speedway Blvd, Tucson, AZ 85719, USA


    Bar website

    american - $$

  10. Frog & Firkin

    Alcohol Bottles

    Import- & craft beer-focused British pub offering bar food, pool, darts & occasional live music.

    874 E University Blvd, Tucson, AZ 85719, USA


    Bar website

    european - $$

  11. Magpie’s Gourmet Pizza


    Local pizzeria chain serving classic pies & customizable combinations within easygoing digs.

    605 N 4th Ave, Tucson, AZ 85705, USA


    Bar website

    pizza - $$

  12. Sullivan’s Steakhouse

    Sullivans Steakhouse

    Whether you’re a first-timer or one of our regulars, you’ll love the familiar feeling that comes with dining at Sullivan’s.

    1785 E River Rd, Tucson, AZ 85718, USA


    Bar website

    american - steakhouse - $$$

  13. North Italia

    North Italia pizza

    We’ve turned a modern lens on traditional Italian cooking.

    2995 E Skyline Dr, Tucson, AZ 85718, USA


    Bar website

    italian - $$

  14. El Minuto Cafe

    El Minuto

    Circa-1930s, family-run Mexican eatery serves Sonoran-style cuisine & well-known cheese crisps.

    354 S Main Ave, Tucson, AZ 85701, USA


    Bar website

    mexican - $$

  15. Zinburger


    From indulgent burgers of the week to a decadent shake of the month, out chefs are always dishing up fun and fresh flavors.

    1865 E River Rd #101, Tucson, AZ 85718, USA


    Bar website

    american - $$

  16. RA Sushi Bar Restaurant

    RA Sushi Bar Restaurant

    Snazzy Japanese fusion chain is known for its inventive sushi, cocktails & happy-hour deals at the bar.

    2905 E Skyline Dr #289, Tucson, AZ 85718, USA


    Bar website

    asian - $$

  17. Vivace


    Northern Italian fare served in elegant surrounds, plus a lengthy wine list.

    6440 N Campbell Ave, Tucson, AZ 85718, USA


    Bar website

    italian - $

  18. Guadalajara Original Grill

    Guadalajara Grill

    The Guadalajara Grill has been offering a wide variety of the best Mexican food including favorite dishes and innovative fresh dishes that keep our customers coming back.

    1220 E Prince Rd, Tucson, AZ 85719, USA


    Bar website

    mexican - $$

  19. Teresa’s Mosaic Cafe

    Teresas Mosaic Cafe

    Brightly decorated breakfast & lunch spot with Mexican meals including handmade tortillas.

    2455 N Silverbell Rd, Tucson, AZ 85745, USA


    Bar website

    cafe - mexican - $$

  20. La Parrilla Suiza

    La Parilla

    All of the restaurant’s tacos, meat and cheese dishes are cooked on charcoal or grilled.

    5602 E Speedway Blvd, Tucson, AZ 85712, USA


    Bar website

    mexican - $

  21. Sausage Deli


    Sit in our cozy dining room or belly up outside with a HOT Omar sub and ice cold beer and you'll be hooked.

    754 E Grant Rd, Tucson, AZ 85719, USA


    Bar website

    american - $

  22. Lindy’s On 4th


    Two Finger Peek-A-Boo to the Dirty Sanchez Lindy's creates a food experience you will want to experience again and again.

    500 N 4th Ave, Tucson, AZ 85705, USA


    Bar website

    american - $$

  23. Brooklyn Pizza Company

    Brooklyn Pizza

    Pizza joint utilizing solar power with famed garlic knots, housemade gelato & oven-fired pies.

    534 N 4th Ave, Tucson, AZ 85705, USA


    Bar website

    pizza - $

  24. No Anchovies


    Pizza joint crafting specialty pies in a compact dining room with bench seating & a full bar.

    870 E University Blvd, Tucson, AZ 85719, USA


    Bar website

    pizza - $$

  25. El Guero Canelo

    El Guero

    As a boy, Daniel Contreras ate, slept and breathed baseball (he was nearly a champion at 12). Now he puts that same drive into Sonoran food.

    5201 S 12th Ave, Tucson, AZ 85706, USA


    Bar website

    mexican - $

  26. Rocco’s Little Chicago


    The best pizza in your neighborhood!

    2707 E Broadway Blvd, Tucson, AZ 85716, USA


    Bar website

    pizza - $$

  27. 1702

    1702 serves an ever-changing selection of 46 imported beers and domestic micro-brews on draught and much more by the bottle.

    1702 E Speedway Blvd, Tucson, AZ 85719, USA


    Bar website

    american - $$

  28. El Charro Cafe

    El Charro

    Whatever your needs, El Charro Café and family are prepared to show you that; "We are not the best because we are the oldest, We are the oldest because WE ARE THE BEST!"

    311 N Court Ave, Tucson, AZ 85701, USA


    Bar website

    mexican - $$

  29. Bison Witches

    Bison Witches

    a nontraditional bar without the traditional "bar food".

    326 N 4th Ave, Tucson, AZ 85705, USA


    Bar website

    american - $