Arizona Rugby coach Dave Sitton passes away
TUCSON (KGUN9-TV) - It is sad news that Dave Sitton, who coached or broadcast rugby for over thirty years, has died at the age of 58.
Below is his bio from the U.S. Rugby federation.
A native of Los Angeles, the University of Arizona baseball recruit underwent shoulder surgery just prior to landing on the University of Arizona campus. When baseball was no longer a viable option, Sitton chose rugby football.
In 1978 the fullback was named Club Sport Athlete of the Year at the University of Arizona. The next year, just after his first tour of England and Wales, he assumed coaching responsibilities at the University of Arizona at the age of 22. He also helped found and played for the Tucson Magpies Club, on which he attained select-side status for the Arizona Rugby Union team.
As coach at Arizona, he has held in his program over 1200 student athletes. The team has traveled overseas every two years since 1978 with matches as far north as Edinburgh, Scotland and as far south as Dunedin, New Zealand. Through the 2004 season, his all-time intercollegiate coaching record at Arizona stands at 325-172. The Wildcats have won four of the first seven Southern California Conference Championships.
For ten years, Sitton was also the general manager and assistant coach on the USA's All American Team. He was at one time the youngest board member (24 years old) to serve on the USARFU board of directors.
Sitton has broadcast USA Eagles rugby and various national championships for ESPN and Fox since 1978. His first telecast was that of the US/New Zealand match in 1978 in San Diego California. His 1987 call of the first Rugby World Cup on ESPN was seen in the United States and around the world, including South Africa.
Currently, Sitton holds two other titles in the community. He is the Vice President, Southern Arizona for Clear Channel Communication's Outdoor Division, and he is the long time television play-by-play voice of University of Arizona Football and Basketball on FOX Sports Net and provides commentary on national and international broadcasts on FOX.
He is a member of several important boards in Tucson including the Steele Memorial Children's Research Foundation, Catholic Foundation of the Diocese of Tucson, The Davis Monthan AFB “50” and the Tucson Pops Orchestra.
He is a life member of the Tucson Conquistadores, the Centurions of Carondelet, the University of Arizona rugby program and the National Rifle Association.
Sitton is a well-known speaker and master of ceremonies throughout Arizona.
He is married to Spencer. They have two daughters: Olivia and Elizabeth.