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Arizona football to name practice fields after former coach Dick Tomey

FILE - In this Oct. 9, 2010, file photo, former Arizona football head coach Dick Tomey, is seen back in Arizona Stadium for the 1st time since 2000, jokes on the sidelines before the NCAA college football game against Oregon State in Tucson, Ariz.

Arizona will name its outdoor football practice fields after former head coach Dick Tomey, the university announced Friday.

Tomey, who passed way in May, is the winningest head coach in Arizona football history after 14 seasons with the team.

The new practice fields honoring Tomey will be located near the Davis Sports Center and will officially be named the “Dick Tomey Football Practice Fields.”

Tomey’s impact on the program will be felt forever, according to Vice President and Director of Athletics Dave Heeke.

“Our Wildcat family is proud to honor Coach Tomey in a very special way,” Heeke said in a statement. “His legacy at the University of Arizona touched the lives of many and still resonates to this day. This tribute to an icon will forever embody his tremendous spirit and everlasting love for his players, the program, the university and the community.”

Tomey went 95-64-4 as the head coach of the Wildcats and led the team to seven bowl appearances, including a 29-0 blowout win against Miami in the 1993 Fiesta Bowl.

He won Pac-10 Coach of the Year in 1992 and later led Arizona to a 12-1 season in 1998 finishing fourth in the AP poll that year, the best the school has ranked to finish a season.

“There is not a more fitting way to honor Dick Tomey,” said Nanci Kincaid, Tomey’s wife, in a statement. “The practice field is where sweat and tears are shed, seeds of triumph are planted, magic firsts happen, and lifetime bonds are forged among teammates. There is nothing easy about the practice field.”

Before joining Arizona, Tomey was also the head coach at Hawaii from 1977 to 1986 and later was an assistant coach at the NFL level for the San Fransico 49ers in 2003.

When the dedication is completed, a ceremony will be held at a later date this season.