Who really knows about Arizona's Jedd Fisch? His serious NFL aura is a dynamic to be explored.



The Arizona Wildcat football chief is doing all of the right things. A journey of football at its highest level is proving to be a theatre of skilled recruiting. Also a crash course to recruits what a NFL pedigree looks like. But as the Ducks come to town, even this will be a tall order for Fisch and Arizona. For now.




Tim Daniel NFL Game Scout, Football Writer

TUCSON, AZ The Cactus Junky Report


I do not think it is an obsession. This Jedd Fisch football dynamic at the University of Arizona is just entertaining me to no end. It has become part of my professional football life.


Granted, Arizona will have its hands full with a superior team as far as talent in the Oregon Ducks Saturday. But we need to look before and after this game.


I have been in this game for a long time. 49 years as a player, recruiter, and coach. This is what I have done my entire life. For my career, I have watched a lot of film. Over 25,000 hours of football film to be semi-exact. However, I don’t think I have quite seen a dynamic like this with Arizona and Fisch.


I attended the University of Arizona, but that’s not it. For years I have walked into my gym in Laguna Niguel, California sporting my red and blue gear with maybe a “Bear Down” once or twice each year from a fellow gym member. In the last two months, the secret Arizona family code of ‘Bear Down’ happens almost daily in my place of fitness and health.


However, I have been remiss as a Wildcat for the last several years. I am not a consumed former student, player, or fan. I have coached at other places for 30 years, so my livelihood depended on making players better that were not Wildcats. In fact, making players better to beat Arizona.


But this is different. This bold feeling as a football coach and writer is what I call the Fisch Dynamic. Taking nothing and turning it into something dynamic, fast.

Ok, maybe I am a little obsessed. But if you are into football, how can someone not be interested in following this coach with an amazing story? The football path to this job as Arizona’s head football coach is remarkable. But what is more remarkable is what he is doing for this Wildcat football program and how Arizona had to get him to Tucson.


When the worst college football coaching job, possibly in NCAA history, was relieved of his duties in 2020, I had very little interest in the next process of hiring. I will admit, the release of Rich Rodriguez left a bad taste in my mouth. As a coach, I am a big Rich Rod fan at Arizona. President Robbins and Athletic Director Dave Heeke went woke and fired him upon what was determined to be a lie. That is when I backed off a little as a supporter, alum, and fan of the football program.


I did not like the hire of Kevin Sumlin. I knew he was not a skilled recruiter and evaluator of talent. He is a very likable guy and like many experienced coaches, he knows the game. But he destroyed the program while treating it as a steppingstone that backfired.


So where does the Fisch Dynamic come in? Dave Heeke created it. He hired Jedd but there is another effect to this dynamic. Heeke hired five head coaches in the same school year. FIVE!

I was fortunate to meet Dave Heeke at halftime of the Michigan/Arizona basketball game in Las Vegas this past year. In the brief ten-minute conversation about the five-hire process, how can I not be reeled back in as form Wildcat?


A lot of new contracts and a lot of money in hiring people to come in and win now.


It worked swimmingly for the most part. Head men’s basketball coach Tommy Lloyd in his first year made the Wildcats a number one seed in the NCAA tournament, and most importantly, won the Pac-12 championship.



Heeke and Robbins went after the football guy I think they wanted when they hired Sumlin. His pedigree is spectacular without being too spectacular. No playing experience but he went after his coaching dream in Florida and the rest is history.


His resume and references include the greatest football coaches of all time.

Now the Arizona dynamic. I watch the same film as Fisch and then I watch his game film after Saturday. Jedd Fisch is highly skilled in recognition, versed in scheme, knows his player’s talent and abilities, and sees the opponent well. However, I think his best attribute as a new head coach, and I have said this before, is his ability to recruit, market his program to the community, and combine both.


Community and recruiting are vitally important in building success within the school, student body, and community. All three of those things are the most important thing to brand new 18-year-olds coming into for the next four years, especially in Jedd’s case. Right now, he looks like the master at it.


After a one-win season and a losing streak of 20, he ends up with the 18th-ranked recruiting class in the country. Who does that?


The dynamic of recruiting, community, and highly skilled in his craft, should put Arizona as a conference favorite in a couple of years wherever they end up.