TUCSON, Ariz. – University of Arizona and BYU have announced a three-game series for the 2016, 2018 and 2020 football seasons. The Cats and the Cougars will meet at University of Phoenix Stadium in Glendale, Ariz. in 2016, in Tucson, Ariz. in 2018 and in Provo, Utah in 2020.
"Our Phoenix-area fan base is an important part of our Arizona Athletics community," athletics director Greg Byrne said. "We're excited to announce our series with BYU and especially playing the first game at University of Phoenix Stadium in Glendale in 2016. These three games will provide the coaches, student-athletes and fans of both Arizona and BYU with a great regional match-up. I look forward to working with BYU Athletics Director Tom Holmoe to further promote this series and providing an exciting atmosphere for our fans."
"One of the things that pleases me most about our game in Phoenix is that it falls in a season where we still will have seven home games on the University of Arizona campus and there will not be a negative impact on the Tucson business community," Byrne added.
The first contest of the three-game series will be held in Glendale, Ariz. at University of Phoenix Stadium presented by The Arizona Sports and Tourism Authority and its Board of Directors in conjunction with the Fiesta Bowl. The teams will resume a traditional home-and-home schedule at Tucson's Arizona Stadium in 2018 and at Provo's LaVell Edwards Stadium in 2020.
"The Arizona Sports & Tourism Authority, and its board members, is thrilled to be hosting another major football event at University of Phoenix Stadium and we look forward to exposing both school's participants and fans to our world-class facility," The Arizona Sports and Tourism Authority President/CEO Tom Sadler said.
"We're very excited to have a game in Phoenix," head coach Rich Rodriguez said. "We have a lot of Arizona fans and supporters in the Valley and this is great for them. I also think this is a great series with BYU, a program with a lot of tradition. I think this match-up will have regional and national interest."
Arizona and BYU have met 22 times previously with the Wildcats leading the series 12-9-1. The first meeting between the two teams was during the 1936 season and the most recent meeting was 2008 when the Wildcats defeated the Cougars, 31-21, in the Las Vegas Bowl.
"This is a great regional series and a unique opportunity for our large fan base in Arizona to see us play," said BYU director of athletics Tom Holmoe. "Arizona has a great football tradition and University of Phoenix Stadium is an incredible NFL venue. I believe the venue and location will attract a lot of our fans in support of the Cougars."
"The Fiesta Bowl strives to contribute to the game of college football, and this game offers us the perfect opportunity to do so," Fiesta Bowl Executive Director Robert Shelton said. "This aligns with our mission to promote the state of Arizona and serve as welcoming hosts."