Brigetta Barrett, rocking her UofA jersey, celebrates after a clearance of 6-7 (2.01m) that won the silver medal at the 2012 Olympics

Zona Zealots - Summer Madness Special Edition

After a six week hiatus for summer break, we’re BAAAAAAAA-aaaaaaaaack! I don’t mean to make you feel bad but while you were sleeping in til noon and eating cereal three meals a day for the past month and a half, the ZZPR posse was winning Olympic medals, exploring the solar system, and saving people’s lives! No big deal, I guess.  Just another summer in Wildcat Country! The Zona Zealots Power Rankings makes a triumphant return this week with a Top 15 special edition.  The ZZPR is a snapshot of how former, current, and even semi-related Arizona Wildcats are doing in the world. There’s no rubric, no fancy algorithm, and very rarely will there even be a logical justification for these rankings; just unabashed Wildcat Pride at its finest. Feel free to leave comments here or on the Zona Zealots Facebook page!

The last edition of the ZZPR can be found here.

1. Alex Teves – A UofA grad, Alex Teves was one of the 12 people killed in the mass shooting in Aurora, CO on July 21st. How do you supplant a NCAA championship team and an Olympic medalist on the ZZPR? Doing something truly heroic is a pretty obvious way, I suppose.  Tip of the cap to you, Alex. May you bear down in eternal peace.

2. Brigetta Barrett (above) – The UofA sophomore track and field star has had just about as an impressive of a year as an athlete possible can.  First she won the NCAA championship in the high jump back in May and then she followed that up with a silver medal in the high jump at the 2012 Summer Olympics in London! Wow.

3. BATCATS! – Batcats > Batman.

4. Mars Rover Camera – The UofA Lunar and Planetary Lab assisted in the recent successful NASA mission to land a rover on Mars which yielded the first ever photographs from the red planet.  Ummm…awesome.

5. Nick Thoman – Thoman is a former Wildcat swimmer who won an individual silver in the 100m backstroke at the 2012 Olympics and a team gold for swimming the backstroke leg of the 4×100 medley relay. Oh, and in case you were wondering: UofA won 5 medals in London.  AS”U” won just 3.

6. Andre Iguodala – Iggy helps the Daydream Team win gold! Suck it, USSR!

7. Nick Foles – Former Wildcat QB and current Philadelphia Eagles backup QB Nick Foles went 6-for-10 for 144 yards and 2 TDs (including a 70-yard bomb in the 3rd quarter) in his first ever NFL actionHe helped lead the Eagles to an NFL preseason win over the Pittsburgh Steelers in impressive fashion and is already being labeled the Eagles’ ‘next future 2nd round pick.

8. Zachary’s Pizza – RIP to one of my favorite college hangouts.  Z’s closed for good a few weeks ago after an impressive 25 year run as Tucson’s best pizza place.  No more Chicken Florentine.  No more Spaten Optimator. No more unsanitary silverware or grouchy waitresses.  Z’s will surely be missed.

9. Dan Hicks – The primary NBC Olympic Swimming commentator was born in Tucson, graduated from the UofA, and is now married to ESPN’s Hannah Storm. 

10. Monsoons – Tucson monsoons made a very strong showing this year so consider this acknowledgement a small token of appreciation, Mother Nature.

11. Sean Miller – Trip to the Bahamas, 5-star recruits lining up to play for you…life is good for Coach Miller right now.

12. The Gronk – I was going to add a hyperlink to some of his ridiculous ESPN Body Issue photos but then I realized that I don’t want to see them. Ever. Again.  If you haven’t seen them and are even remotely curious, be warned: What has been seen cannot be unseen. I still get night tremors.

13. Rich Rodriguez – Keeps signing 3-star players almost exclusively, somehow remains impervious to public scrutiny.  That will come to an end if when the Wildcats football team has their next losing season.

14. Matt Scott – If Scott stays healthy and some RichRod magic happens, he’s my super-darkhorse to win Pac-12 Player of the Year. That opinion is gets the Unbiased Journalism Committee stamp of approval.  Whatever. I say he’s going to thrive in the new offense so boo-ya!

15. Alex Jacobson – If Alex Jacobson starts getting paid to play basketball (I can’t even use the term “professional” here) in the same off-season that Kyryl Natyazhko starts getting paid to play basketball, the world will implode. Literally. And immediately.  Say what you want about the Mayan calendar or locust plagues marking the end of times.  This occurrence would be the true end of the world. I am not joking. Start working on that bucket list ASAP, amigo.

 Not ranked this week: Panda Express orange chicken, Andrew Weil, KAMP radio, UAPD, Modern Streetcar, Josiah Turner, Craig T. Nelson, Greg Byrne, Kyryl Natyazhko.

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