Arizona Wildcats Top 50 Football Games: No. 31

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Our Arizona Wildcats Top 50 Football Games ranking is shown as a slideshow starting at No. 50 (click on “next” at the upper or lower right to get started) …

Every day we will have data related to the number of days remaining to kickoff — Texas-San Antonio vs. Arizona — on Sept. 3 at Arizona Stadium. That game is only 31 days.

Anthony Gimino compiled Arizona’s best player by jersey number while with TucsonCitizen.com three years ago. The best No. 31 is linebacker Mark Arneson (1969-71). He is a Palo Verde High alum who was an All-American in 1971 and went on to a nine-year NFL career.

Mark Arneson was an All-American linebacker who went on to play nine seasons in the NFL (University of Arizona photo)

Mark Arneson was an All-American linebacker who went on to play nine seasons in the NFL (University of Arizona photo)

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For the third straight year, AllSportsTucson.com presents the Arizona Wildcats’ Top 50 games in the program’s history.

The ranking corresponds to the number of days left to the opening kickoff for the Arizona Wildcats against Texas-San Antonio on Sept. 3 at Arizona Stadium. We are only 31 days from the start of the 2015 football season.

The ranking each year is based on new research and judgments for all games, not just those from last season. This year, four new games join the ranking, including one played more than 50 years ago that — upon further review — deserves Top 50 status. That game was presented at No. 38. The No. 1-ranked game last year may not be the No. 1 this year.

You can view the countdown by clicking on the “next” arrow at the upper or lower right …

Ken Cardella carried the ball 31 times for 200 yards against ASU in 1953. At the time, it was only the second time an Arizona running back had eclipse the 200-yard mark. Bill Hargis’ 217 yards on 33 carries against Occidental in 1930 stood as the record. The 200-yard mark has now been passed 17 times.

— Arizona trailed by 31 points at Oregon in the 2008 season and nearly came back to win. The Wildcats were down 48-17 with 12:46 left in the third quarter before trailing 48-45 with 6:38 left in thie fourth quarter. Oregon prevailed 55-45.

— Arizona’s 1940 team recorded 31 interceptions in only nine games, a school-record average of 3.44 a game.

— None of Arizona’s players presently wear No. 31. The school has yet to release a full roster with the incoming recruits.

Site founder and award-winning sports journalist Javier Morales has published his first e-book, “The Highest Form of Living”, a fiction piece about a young man who overcomes a troubled upbringing without his lost father and wayward mother through basketball and hope. His hope is realized through the sport he loves. Basketball enables him to get past his fears. His experience on the court indirectly brings him closer to his parents in a unique, heartfelt way. Please order it at Amazon (for only $4.99) by clicking on the photo:
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