Friday, October 31, 2008

Nice Quiet Friday

After some good workouts and practices this week, Coach Stoops gave the team the day off. With that, Tim and a couple of mgrs went golfing today with Tim's brother in law. Wow, not only do I wish I had my camera out there, I wish I could get some video of that match!!! Tim and the mgrs deserve some time off.

Tom, Benny, Armando and myself are holding down the fort today. Armando and I have had some lively discussion once again this morning. I LOVE that guy!!! No one can get my heart pumping like Armando. I'm just grateful that he puts up with me everyday. The rest of the guys are always encouraging him to get me stirred up on the current events of the day; it always make for a GREAT day. One of these days we will do a highlight of my hero, Armando.

Benny is getting ready for the Red/Blue scrimmage tomorrow. It is Coach Pennell's debut as our Interim Head Coach for Men's Basketball. All of us in the equipment room are pulling so hard for our team and Coach Pennell!!!! I have told so many people so many times just how awesome our basketball players are. It has been difficult to see first hand what they have had to go through over the past year.

We are also right in the middle of Fall Baseball, so they have Benny's full attention as well. Benny is learning day to day just how busy the equipment room can be when Basketball and Baseball are going at the same time. Fortunately for us, Benny is handling it very well and having fun doing it. If you can't laugh when Benny is around, maybe you should have yourself checked out, because he is funny!!!

Well, I am hoping to see some football games on TV tomorrow. Have a GREAT weekend!

Thursday, October 30, 2008

Getting Ready for the Cold Weather

Well, we got our new cold weather trunk from Olympic Case today. In an effort to make sure we have everything available for our coaches, especially Head Coach Mike Stoops when we travel to the Pacific Northwest late in the year, we designed a trunk to have one of everything for coach in size Large, and X-large. You see, Coach Stoops is really a Large and a half. Not a Large, and not an XL. To add to the frustration, some of our outerwear changes in fitting. Some of the Larges fit like Medium, and some of the Larges fit like XL????? We have experienced Murphy's Law in the past in the fact that as soon as Coach Stoops would want the quarter zip fleece in XL, we would have packed a Large. Being the great guy that he is, he would never complain. But I am thinking, we have plenty of the gear, we take a semi-truck with plenty of room, why not have a trunk where we can have everything possible in one trunk???

Well, yesterdays featured manager, Ronnie now has an additional trunk to pack when we head north. Tim is working on a checklist now, and it will be added to the already thick checklist book.

Tim had Tom Boesel go get things like hand warmer packs to fit in the muff pockets that fit around the players waist. He is getting all the long socks and tights ready. The greatest Director of Football Operations of all time, Erick Harper, has already sent us a travel list of players for next weeks game, so Tim has the mgrs getting all those items numbered.

We are very spoiled here in the desert with mostly warm and dry games, so these next two trips will be challenging for us. We will probably leave the Cool Zone fans at home though!

Does anyone know if Milty rents those player benches with heaters in them????

Wednesday, October 29, 2008

Student Manager Spotlight, Ronnie Platt

Please let me introduce you to one of our finest student managers, Ronnie Platt. Ronnie is a Communications major in his third year from Southlake, Texas. He is one of the most dependable and reliable managers I have ever had the privelage of working with! In my thirty years of doing this I have had many GREAT student managers, and Ronnie is truly one of the best of all time. He understands what we are all about and is very passionate about doing a great job.
Ronnie works with Coach Bill Bedenbaugh and the offensive line at practice everyday. This is his third year working with the O Line. He is responsible for packing Trunk 3 which holds just about everything essential when on the road. He also is responsible for making sure the Stadium Equipment Room is properly stocked for each home game. But maybe his most important role is ordering food for the managers on late nights and game days. Coach Stoops honored him at the beginning of the year with a personalized "Thank You" autographed picture for all of his hardwork and dedication to the football team.

At this time, we do not designate a "Head Manger", but Ronnie is the closest thing to having one. Anytime Tim or I need something important done, Ronnie is the one we call on. Ronnie spends alot of his free time during the day coming by the equipment room and helping out with anything that may need to be done.

He travels on all of the away games. One of his best trips so far is USC, simply because of the pagentry and stadium atmosphere.

His high school, Southlake Carroll, went 69-1 and won 3 Texas 5A State championships in football while Ronnie was a manager. His favorites teams, besides the Wildcats, are the Dallas Cowboys and the New York Yankees. His favorite food is anything homemade, while his favorite movie of all time is 40 Year Old Virgin. He loves Country music and his favorite band is the Eli Young Band.

After graduation, he plans on a career as an Equipment Manager.

Tuesday, October 28, 2008

On the Road Again

Well, after a couple of weeks at Arizona Stadium, it is time to go on the road again. We have two long trips back to back coming up.

First we go to Pullman, where I love going because I get to see my brother and his family. My brother, Milton, is the Director of Equipment Operations for WSU. He and I got to work together there for seven seasons and those are some of the best years of my life!

Then, we turn right around and head to Eugene where we will take on the Ducks Nov. 15th.

Fortunately for us, we have two of the best truck drivers in the world and they will make sure all of our equipment gets to and from both locations. Hopefully they are home resting up for two long trips back to back.

We are enjoying a week off this week. Even though everyone here is working hard preparing for the upcoming game against the Cougars, we do not have to prepare for a game this weekend.

Monday, October 27, 2008

Welcome Benny Conger

With the promotion of Tim Pfennig back in July, we were able to replace him with Benny Conger. We hired Benny while he was working for Riddell at the San Antonio, TX plant. He is a former student manager, and full time equipment manager for Texas Tech where he and his wife graduated. They left Lubbock for San Antonio when his wife, Greta, got a job with the San Antonio Spurs.
Benny was exactly what we were looking for in our search. Benny is full of life and very passionate about serving and supporting our teams here at UofA. He is responsible for Men's Basketball and Baseball, along with helping Tim and me with football on a day to day basis.

Benny has already added so much to our operation and all of us have an opportunity to learn so much from his past experiences, especially working at Riddell. He is outstanding in helping train our student managers in terms of helmet and shoulder pad maintenance. Tim and I love having him on the sideline, especially when something needs to be fixed.

What a Weekend

Even though the game against USC did not turn out the way we wanted, we still had a GREAT weekend in the equipment room.

We seem to always have many visitors on Friday home games, but with it being Homecoming, it seemed like we got an extra treat with so many visitors.

Some of the highlights on last Friday were some of UofA's all time greats, including Ricky Hunley, John Meloan, Nick Hundley, Jack Murphy (Murf), and many more.

On game day we got to see former managers like Andrew Block with his girlfriend (pictured) and Jimmy Rieble. Lawrence Moyse was at the game too.

It is always great to see former players, managers, coaches and friends. Head Coach Mike Stoops always has visitors for games and we got to see many of them again, including Uncle Jim Stoops which is one of our favorites!

Along with Andrew and his girlfriend, I am going to post more pictures from Saturdays game against the Trojans.


Sunday, October 26, 2008

The Day After

Well, it wasn't the outcome all of us wanted, but you have to be proud of our players and coaches who took USC's best punch, yet we were in it to the end!

But as usual, I am VERY PROUD of our equipment staff! We had half of our student equipment staff show up to the locker room over an hour early than they were scheduled. It shows their passion and enthusiasm for what they are all about....doing what they can to help the team.

Tim Pfennig is in his first year as my number one assistant in charge of the day to day operations of football equipment. After 6 years of hard work and loyalty to our Men's Basketball, Baseball and Men's Tennis teams, I promoted him to be my number one man for Football. Wow, has he been a hit! I am very proud of him and his student assistants! They were as bummed as any player or coach after the game. They pour their heart and soul into what they do.

As promised, I am going to attempt to post some pictures of their hard work and let people see what they do to help get the team ready.

Saturday, October 25, 2008


Well, the time has finally come. We report to the Stadium locker room in about an hour to get the team ready for tonights battle against the Trojans.

I plan on taking the camera to get some pictures posted of just how we get the locker room set up for the team.

We will be setting out the uniforms, and that has become a newsworthy event ever since we have added the red jerseys and pants to the mix. I am asked all the time, "which combo do the players like the most?", or "which combo do I like?"

Well, I can tell you that I do not have a favorite, I like them all! The players, well, like anything else, there are a few different favorites. I will say they like the color red though!!!!


Friday, October 24, 2008

Getting Ready for Homecoming

This is the first ever blog for myself, or for our new Arizona Wildcat Equipment Room blog site! My name is Wendell, and I am the lucky guy to be in charge of this operation. I say I am lucky because I work with the GREATEST people in the business. I am sitting here in my office talking to Tim, Benny and Armando trying to get them as excited about this blog as I am. That is the usual case around here; I get excited about something and then try to get my co-workers excited too!

Right now we are all excited about the opportunity tomorrow with the football game with the almighty USC Trojans. Coach Stoops and his team has done a great job this season so far, but we have a great opportunity tomorrow to show just how hard they have been working. The Trojans, as usual, will be a huge hurdle for our guys to clear, but they are up to the challenge.

No matter what happens in the game tomorrow, it doesn't change anything they have accomplished up to now. From day one since Coach Mike Stoops stepped on campus, our players have responded to his leadership and have worked extremely hard for him and his excellent coaching staff.

I hope this blog site works well for everyone. For years we have talked about having our own website here in the football equipment room, but I think a blog site will do for now. It is our hope that we can share with others exactly what we do, and how much we enjoy doing it. We also want this to be an avenue to recruit potential students at the University of Arizona that may want to be part of a winning team, Arizona Wildcat Football!!! We also hope to get many comments from our site visitors.

BEAR DOWN, Wendell