Former Arizona Wildcats baseball coach Jerry Kindall remembers Dave Sitton as a high school catcher from Los Angeles with a bum shoulder and bad knees.
Nevertheless, Kindall invited Sitton to try out for the team as walk-on in the fall of 1973. Sitton didn’t make the cut. When Kindall gave him the bad news, encouraging him to stick with his education, Sitton said he would like to get into broadcasting.
Kindall suggested he start working in the press box, allowing him to keep hanging around the team.
“He was such a hustler and such a great influence on all of us because he was a happy guy,” Kindall said Monday as the athletic department and city mourned the news that Sitton — a longtime broadcaster and public figure — had died at 58 due to an apparent heart attack.
“He didn’t make it as a player, but we always identified him as being on our team.”
That was Kindall’s first season as the head coach at Arizona.
“Dave came into my life, and he brightened my heart,” Kindall said. “He was a genuine friend.”