Sun Devils, Cards Bury The Hatchet


No one is saying it, but it's obvious that the tragic death of Pat Tillman in Afghanistan had something to do with Arizona State University and the Arizona Cardinals burying the hatchet.

Early this week, both sides announced they had agreed to contractual changes that would help settle the lawsuit the Cards filed against ASU in November 2000.

The Cards sued ASU claiming permanent signage that was added to Sun Devil Stadium without the team's approval cost the Cards revenue opportunities.

In 2002, an arbitrator ruled that ASU breached their agreement with the Cardinals but awarded no damages to the NFL team.

The friction between the two reached a peak when ASU athletic director Gene Smith openly criticized the Cardinals for the lawsuit and later said he was happy Arizona didn't draft former ASU star Terrell Suggs.

During Tillman's honor services held in Sun Devil Stadium this spring, I watched Cardinals Vice President Michael Bidwell and ASU President Michael Chow take a seat along side one another at about the 50-yard line.

I wondered how the two men, who had been publically feuding and bickering, would acknowledge one another on the very field where Tillman played as both a Cardinal and Sun Devil.

To onlookers, the two appeared to only mutually coexist. But maybe that meeting, as sad as it was, was the beginning of the end of a feud that had gone on since the Cardinals arrived in Arizona in 1988.

The Cardinals and the Sun Devils have gone all out to honor the memory of Tillman.

It would seem more than a bit hypocritical for both to praise him as a fine Sun Devil, Cardinal and Army Ranger while carrying on the feud.

The most fitting tribute to Tillman would be for ASU and the Cardinals to settle the dispute and lawsuit.

With the new agreement between the two, Crow has said "We're kicking off a new era."

"We will be moving forward with a spirit of cooperation," Bidwell said.

Maybe Pat Tillman has something to do with that.

Hoff at NCAA meet

Former Longhorn three-sports star Jeremy Hoff, now a student at Northern Arizona University, threw 59 feet, 2 3/4 inches in the shot put to finish 17th at the NCAA Outdoor Track and Field Championships in Austin, Texas. The distance represented his third best throw of the season.

He also improved on last year's 27th-place effort but missed qualifying for the finals by one foot, 3 inches.

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