Can a Wildcat and Sun Devil co-exist?

I was born in Tampa Bay, Florida and didn't get to Tucson until my dad got a job here in 1981. But somehow I've felt loyal to the University of Arizona seemingly my whole life...until now. What is one to do when a former Sun Devil comes into his life and makes him re-examine his entire way of thinking?

A confessional.

The girl that I have been dating for the last three-plus years and hope to one day marry was a Sun Devil. Yep. She went to ASU and I willingly chose to date her anyway.

I got to wondering if that meant that I was unfaithful or some kind of a sell-out to my beloved Wildcats? Isn't it a Cardinal sin to not only date but to hope to have a family with a member of the archenemy? And would it even work?

Let's examine.

How many Dodger fans find themselves spending their lives with Giant or Yankee fans? Or how about Alabama and Auburn fans? Duke and Carolina? Washington and Oregon? Cats and dogs? English soccer hooligans and members of Parliament? Probably not too many can get along for extended periods of time before something bad happens.

Actually, this girl that I speak of is from Tucson and could have gone to college literally anywhere in America. She graduated third in her high school class, was a National Merit Scholar, scored a 15 million on her SAT and yet this Tucson native chose ASU over Amherst, Rice, Stanford…and UofA?!!! Maybe it's just me but isn't there something troubling with that way of thinking?

Personally, if I were the Dean of Admissions at ASU I would have given her a scholarship so big that three generations from now her kids' kids' kids could still attend for free. Imagine the surprise of the Sun Devil administrator looking at that transcript and then learning that she chose ASU (and to live in Tempe) over schools like Stanford and Amherst. That's like Kobe Bryant electing to play basketball at Pacific when he could have gone to Duke, Arizona or Kansas! That guy must have been elated.

So what am I to do? It's a real dilemma. Wouldn't it be next to impossible to blend together a Sun Devil and a Wildcat? To quote Harold Ramis in Ghostbusters, "Do NOT cross the streams…it would be really, really bad." Imagine if we have kids. It's likely that our son would be a great basketball player that couldn't balance his budget.

Actually, I think the choice is becoming a lot clearer lately. This beautiful girl that I am in love with is finishing up her degree at UofA this next semester and then she's off to medical school in either San Francisco, Bethesda (Maryland) or…ARIZONA! Maybe she is coming around after all.

But you want to know the best part? She plans to name her first son Elliott. As in Sean. How cool would that be?

{E-mail Ben Hansen at}

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