We would like to take this opportunity to thank everyone that has helped us out this past season. There are so many people that help make our situation here in the equipment room at University of Arizona such a great one.
Today I would like to send a shout out to the vendors that make sure we have the best equipment and service possible. These fine folks treat us like we are the most important equipment managers in the business, and the most important program in the NCAA. We realize we are not, but we sure appreciate how these people treat us and make us feel on a daily basis.
We would like to thank Dan Vooletich and all the others at Riddell for helping us keep our players safe and well protected. Not only do they provide us with the latest and greatest helmet and shoulder pads, but they also recondition our equipment each year and help keep our gear looking nice and new. Each year, Jeff Watson, who is the local Riddell and All American rep, comes in and helps Dan make sure our reconditioning is done correctly. Those two guys work hard to make sure we get the best service.
We would also like to thank Terry Swartz and Patrick Matthews at Nike for keeping our coaches and players in the best shoes and clothes possible. Nike has so many big time accounts, but the way these two guys treat us you would think we were 10 times running National Champions. We really appreciate not only the great gear, but the FIRST CLASS service. I don't know how they do it, but they hit a home run everytime!
A huge thank you goes to United Van Lines local dealer, Horizon Moving here in Tucson that goes way beyond the call of duty to make sure our football equipment is moved to all of our away games and bowl games. Bob Keith and Bob Caprari are not only two great drivers and workers, but they are GREAT guys who love the Wildcats. These guys will do whatever they can to help out our program. We appreciate all that they do and are happy to call them team mates!
We would like to thank Justin Niefer with EvoShield for introducing us to their great product which helps protect our players. Not only is Justin a FIRST CLASS person, he also has some of the best product out there. Our players will not take the field without their EvoShield product. I can not imagine a team not stocking their great product.
A super thank you goes to Julie Turpin at Walt's Distributors here in Tucson. I don't know why she answers the phone when we call? They must not have caller ID. It seems everytime we call her we need stuff yesterday!!! They are without a doubt the best screen printer in Tucson and they treat everyone at McKale, not just the equipment room, like they are their best customer. Did I mention we (ME) are pretty picky too! Wow, thank you just doesn't seem adequate enough for all she and that company does for Wildcat Athletics!
Speaking of quick turnaround and us being picky, we can not thank Chris Calandro at The Big Game enough for turning around painted balls in record time. Seems like we are always in a hurry with these guys. I don't know how Chris remains so nice all the time. Chris and The Big Game are the very best at what they do. I always look forward to seeing him at the AFCA show each January. He is truly one of the great guys in the business.
Another big thank you goes to the absolute best helmet decal man in the world, Chris Willis at Athletic Decals! Once again, when we call Chris with a last minute idea, he makes sure we have it as soon as possible. Not only is his service next to no one else, his quality has always been number one in the industry. I have doing business with Chris for over twenty years and I would NEVER use anyone else. His decals are the best, and in that world, quality counts. Another truly great man in the business. If everyone in the world was like Chris Willis, the world would have ZERO problems! Thanks Chris for all your help over the years.
In more recent time, we have fallen in love with the guys at Olympic Case. We have been having to update some of our trunks and cases over the past year and we have found the best quality, service and friendship in Otis Jackoboice and Ben Stanton. These guys are not only great guys, but they fun to work with and will bend over backwards to help you in anyway! The biggest thing we have found in the last few trunks we have ordered from them is the OUTSTANDING quality that they have in their work. These guys have it all! We are working with them right now on some new trunk designs which will allow us to be much more efficient.
Last, and surely not the least appreciated is Ron Shepro at Buddy's All Stars in Phoenix. As many of you know that are in this business, the local sporting goods guy just isn't the primary guy anymore. Back in the day they were the most important people in the business. The way business is today, we do very little with the local sporting goods store, but you would think we were the most important account in his little black book! Not only is Ron Shepro a hard working sales rep, he is GREAT guy who drops everything he is doing for a small order for the Wildcats. I still think he is a closet Sun Devil too????????? Anyway, he is a great guy and a good friend! Thanks Ron for taking our phone calls!
There are many others that help us out from time to time, and we thank all of you. We couldn't do it without you!