Arizona Daily Wildcat
TypeStudent newspaper
Owner(s)Arizona Student Media
HeadquartersTucson, AZ, US
OCLC number55753554

The Arizona Daily Wildcat is a student newspaper serving the University of Arizona. It was founded in 1899[1] as the Sage Green and Silver. Previous names include Arizona Weekly Life, University Life, Arizona Life and Arizona Wildcat. [2] Its distribution is within the university and the Tucson, Arizona metropolitan area. It has a distribution of 20,000.[1] Its website is updated regularly during the spring and fall semesters, while the print version is distributed Wednesday. During the summer months, it is published weekly as the Arizona Summer Wildcat.[3] The Arizona Daily Wildcat was named Best College Newspaper by Princeton Review's THE BEST 361 COLLEGES, 2006 EDITION.[4]


2010 Associated Collegiate Press Online Pacemaker award winner.[5]
2010 Associated Collegiate Press Pacemaker finalist.[6]
2010 Society of Professional Journalists Mark of Excellence Award National Finalist for online sports reporting at a four-year college or university.
2010 College Media Advisers Apple Award winner for best four-year broadsheet newspaper.
2015 Associated Collegiate Press 2015 National College Media Convention Best of Show [7]


The Tuesday October 16, 2012 issue featured a four-panel cartoon by cartoonist D. C. Parsons, deemed offensive by some 8,000 signatories to a petition to have the Cartoonist and Editor-in-Chief and Copy-Editor fired. The editor-in-chief did not step down despite the number of signatories asking for her resignation; however, the cartoonist was promptly fired after the publication.

Father: Ya know son...

If you ever tell me you're gay... I will shoot you with my shotgun, roll you up in a carpet and throw you off of a bridge...

Son: Well I guess that's what you call a "Fruit Roll Up!"

Father and Son: Ahh Ha ha ha Ha ha... bwah Ha Ha ha Ha ha haa!!

The paper did issue an apology for the matter.[8]

The May Day mystery

The May Day mystery is a series of cryptic advertisements taken out annually on May 1 (May Day) in the Arizona Daily Wildcat since 1981. The ads are described as a "mess of equations, historical figures, artwork and symbols",[9] and are signed with a "smiley face" figure.[10]

The first known ad appeared on May 1, 1981, featuring the quote "Long live Chairman Mao" written in simplified Chinese. Over the years, the ads grew in complexity. The ads usually appear on the most expensive advertising areas of the newspaper. They share a theme of revolution and social unrest, and featured about 14 languages including forms of Chinese, Afrikaans and Hebrew. In 1997, UA alumni and web designer Bryan Hance started a website to document the ads. Hance claimed he has since been contacted by an organization known as the "Orphanage" who provided him with more clues and cryptic messages. In 1998, following an ad featuring many cryptic messages in Hebrew, a group of students accused the ads of anti-Semitism and demanded to know the source of the ads.[11]

The ads were, for several years, placed by Robert Truman Hungerford, a Tucson-based lawyer and a UA alumni. He is an "self-described anti-social hermit" with an interest in philosophy, theology, cryptography, languages and medicine. In a 2003 interview, Hungerford claimed to be the legal counsel for an organization who placed the ads, and refused to name the organization.[11] Hungerford also claimed to be a member of the "Orphanage".[10]

Notable alumni

Daily Wildcat alumni have been successful in fields other than journalism, from higher education to thoroughbred race horse training. Alumni in the journalism and media fields include:


  1. ^ a b "Arizona Daily Wildcat – Contact Information". Retrieved 2012-04-23.
  2. ^ "University of Arizona Library – Reference Resources". Archived from the original on 1 September 2006. Retrieved July 31, 2006.
  3. ^ "Arizona Daily Wildcat – General information". Archived from the original on May 13, 2006. Retrieved June 4, 2006.
  4. ^ "Princeton Review Annual College Rankings Based on 110,000 Student Surveys Now Out in The Best 361 Colleges, 2006 Edition". Retrieved July 31, 2006. Article by unknown author, The Princeton Review, August 22, 2005
  5. ^ "". Archived from the original on 2011-12-03.
  6. ^ "". Archived from the original on 2014-11-29. Retrieved 2011-11-28.
  7. ^ "ACP – 2015 National College Media Convention Best of Show".
  8. ^ "Daily Wildcat: An apology from the Wildcat". Retrieved 21 October 2012.
  9. ^ Burgoyne, Lauren (2008-05-01). "Be The First To Crack the May Day Mystery". KOLD-TV. Archived from the original on 2022-08-19. Retrieved 2022-08-19.}
  10. ^ a b Towne, Douglas (2017-05-01). "Arizona's da Vinci Code". Phoenix magazine. Archived from the original on 2021-05-01. Retrieved 2022-08-19.
  11. ^ a b "The Great May Day Mystery: Mysterious Ads Placed in College Newspaper for More Than 20 Years". Tucson Local Media. 2003-05-13. Archived from the original on 2020-03-04. Retrieved 2022-08-19.