Building upon a long tradition of mutual support, the University of Arizona Arthritis Center will once again team up with the UArizona Department of Intercollegiate Athletics as it introduces the 2021 University of Arizona Arthritis Center ‘Bear Down Celebration’ to benefit the center and its research, outreach and education efforts.
This meaningful collaboration began upon the arrival of Hall-of-Fame basketball coach Lute Olson at the UArizona in 1983 and has helped raise nearly $2 million over nearly four decades for arthritis research, outreach and education at UArizona.
This year the Arthritis Center celebrates UArizona Women's Basketball Final Four Coach Adia Barnes who led her team on an unprecedented march to the Wildcats first appearance in the NCAA Women's National Championship game. An inspirational leader on and off the court, Coach Barnes joins UArizona Vice President for Athletics Dave Heeke for this special event highlighting nearly 40 years of partnership between the University of Arizona Arthritis Center and Wildcat Athletics.
The title sponsor for this unique event is Desert Diamond Casinos. Ticket purchasers and sponsors are invited to attend the event in person and will be a part of the studio audience and question and answer session with Coach Barnes and Heeke. Lunch from Fleming’s Prime Steakhouse and Wine Bar is also provided for those who purchase tickets or sponsorships.
The livestream is free and open to the public.
Prior registration for this event is required. Tickets for the live studio audience are $100 per person and include lunch. These purchases are partially tax-deductible. Sponsorships are also available and include seats for the live studio audience event.
Adia Barnes became Arizona’s head women’s basketball coach in April, 2016, and led the Wildcats to the National Championship game in the 2021 NCAA Tournament, the first time Arizona advanced past the Sweet 16 in school history. The leading scorer in Arizona women’s basketball history and a WNBA Champion, Barnes came to Tucson after serving as an assistant coach at the University of Washington for five seasons. Through her first five seasons as head coach, Barnes has won 89 games, the most of any Arizona coach in program history in their first five seasons. She is also the only coach in school history to win at least 20 games three times in her first five seasons. During the NCAA Tournament, Arizona defeated UConn in the Final Four, which was the first time in school history Arizona knocked off both the No. 1 team in the nation as well as a 1-seed in the NCAA Tournament.