Now, we can move on. With Arizona – and Utah and Arizona State – finally deciding to move on to the Big 12 next year, the thought of it can finally be put to rest.
Arizona football coach Jedd Fisch spoke about that – and more – Sunday after practice. Arizona president Robert Robbins will speak to it on Monday morning. Robbins and UA basketball coach Tommy Lloyd spoke to the team, as well.
“It was the only move at this point in time,” Fisch told gathered reporters after practice. “I think it’s what was needed at the time, when we found out about the changes that other programs are making and the decisions that other programs were having.”
Oregon and Washington jumped to the Big Ten earlier on Friday. Arizona soon followed. As did Utah and Arizona State.
“That being the case now, we have a chance to really focus in on today,” he continued. “We don’t have to worry about what’s going to happen next. Where are we going to go? We know where we’re going to be, we know what’s going to happen come the end of the football season. So, our focus right now is on the Pac-12.”
He added there would have been that “wonder” about next season had it not eventually happened.
So, here we are. One week of practice in, a new conference in the future and an enthused team getting ready for this season.
Still, there are thoughts – because there were questions – about recruiting and being relevant in the West.
“We’re never going to not recruit Southern California, that is a baby of ours,” Fisch said. “And, as long as I’m the head coach here, we are going to dig deep into Southern California and do everything we possibly can. And you know what? It’s a lot shorter flight from LA to Houston than LA to Newark Airport.”
Still, he pointed out that Arizona will have more of a national presence given the move. It had that the last couple of weeks when Arizona was the next rumored team to move to the Big 12 after Colorado jumped.
“More people on the East Coast heard about Arizona over the course of the last two weeks than they have in a very long time,” Fisch said. “More people in Texas continue to hear about Arizona. We all saw the importance of what Arizona was going to do, that was what everybody seemed to be waiting on for a long time. The reason why they were doing that is because of the strength of the block A.”