Arizona fans excited and hopeful

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TUCSON, Ariz. -- It was anything but a normal school day at the University of Arizona Thursday.

Students ditched out on the homework. Tailgaters skipped out on work.

Between the school day ending and the tailgating beginning, it made for a clustered afternoon around campus.  Cars lined Campbell Avenue in front of the mall. Parking spots filled up quickly.

Despite it being a weeknight, fans found plenty of reason to attend the game.

"We love the national attention. Arizona's a great school," said UA Senior David Schmulenson.

It was Tim Kish's first game as interim head coach.

"We'll see today.  See how they do," said Russ Steinbach.

It was also the first home game where fans had to get their tickets scanned-- which at times slowed things down.

But despite the new, the UA tradition remained strong, fans hoping this game could turn things around for their 'Cats.

"Obviously we're in a down year right now, but being that Thursday night game to kick start the weekend for college football is an outstanding thing and a great opportunity for us," said Schmulenson.