Arizona got off to a bad start in the New Mexico Bowl, but the 21-0 deficit in the first quarter wasn't even the most embarrassing thing that happened to the Wildcats.
With the Arizona defense struggling, two Wildcats defensive players started throwing blows on the sideline. You don't see two teammates wailing on each other during a game very often.
That's more fight than Arizona's defensive unit showed on the field most of the game.
ESPN caught the video of defensive lineman Tevin Hood connecting with a roundhouse right to his teammate, linebacker Cody Ippolito. Ippolito responds by throwing a couple punches back before the players were separated by their teammates. Both players were sent back to the locker room at separate times while the first half was still going on. Ryan Recker of KVOA-TV in Tucson reported that Ippolito was in street clothes and watching the game from the concourse level of the stadium after he was removed from the game by Arizona. David Kelly of Tucson News Now said Hood was also removed from the game, and that he dressed and left the stadium.
Arizona coach Rich Rodriguez didn't say what caused the fight, but said he wasn't happy with it.
"But as soon as I heard what happened, we sent the guys in the locker room," Rodriguez said according to the Tucson Citizen. "They went home, I believe, with their parents. So it was embarrassing, but I didn't see it, so I can't comment on it."
Maybe that brawl woke Arizona up. The Wildcats rallied to score the next 21 points to tie the game, and eventually won the game with two touchdowns in the final minute. And, that incident on the sideline provided by far the best hits from any defensive player on either team in that game, considering the teams combined for 1,234 yards.
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