The Arizona Wildcats gave newcomers a two-hour cushion to check in for their first-ever training camp - from 8 to 10 a.m. Tuesday.
Freshman running back Ka'Deem Carey was among the first in line to receive his helmet and shoulder pads.
"He was here at 8:01," said Wendell Neal, the UA's longtime equipment man.
Southern Arizona can relax. Carey, a former Canyon del Oro High School star, is enrolled in school and - as of Tuesday - geared up for his first college practices.
If everything goes according to plan, the Arizona Daily Star's reigning Southern Arizona Offensive Player of the Year could be a major factor as a true freshman.
Senior Keola Antolin is penciled in as the UA's starting tailback for the 2011 season, with a handful of players - including Carey - competing for playing time behind him.
The Wildcats' veterans are scheduled to report today, with the team's first practice scheduled for Thursday morning at 6.
Nearly all of Arizona's freshmen and junior college transfers checked in Tuesday at McKale Center, but team policy prohibits them from talking to the media until next week.
The Wildcats are still waiting on one scholarship player, linebacker Domonique Petties, to enroll. The Duncan, Okla., native should know his fate in the next week or two.
Walk-ons have ties here
How local is this year's crop of UA walk-ons? Many of them could actually walk to campus.
Former Salpointe Catholic standout Ben Sullivan highlights a Tucson-heavy class that includes linebacker Rolly Escarcega (Catalina Foothills), offensive lineman Luis Martinez (Salpointe Catholic) and punter Drew Riggleman (Sahuaro).
Sullivan caught 42 passes for 637 yards and four touchdowns as a senior, tops among all Southern Arizona tight ends. He verbally committed to Holy Cross last winter, but changed his mind when the UA invited him to walk on.
Arizona quarterbacks coach Frank Scelfo knows Sullivan well: Scelfo's son, Jordan, was Salpointe's starting quarterback.
"Frank really liked him," Salpointe Catholic coach Dennis Bene said. "They've offered Ben a wonderful opportunity to try out and try to make the team. He probably has to gain 20 pounds, but he's a great route-runner and has great hands. Coach Scelfo thinks that down the road, he can play for the Wildcats."
Martinez spent the 2010 season at Div. III Lake Forest (Ill.) College before moving home. Escarcega will compete for playing time at linebacker, while Riggleman is expected to join the team when rosters expand next week.
Quarterback a no-show
The list of Tuesday's newcomers included a surprise name: Austyn Carta-Samuels, the former starting quarterback at the University of Wyoming.
However, Carta-Samuels did not check in by the end of the day and is not expected to enroll at the UA.
Carta-Samuels started 21 games in two seasons at Wyoming, throwing for 3,655 yards and 19 touchdowns. He left the Cowboys program in January, and has since announced plans to transfer to a California junior college and, as of two months ago, Vanderbilt. Per NCAA rules, he must sit out this season.
Carta-Samuels would have had tough competition at the UA: The Wildcats are expecting veteran Matt Scott, Rutgers transfer Tom Savage and freshman Daxx Garman to compete for the starting job in 2012.
On StarNet: Get the latest from the Wildcats' training camp at go.azstarnet.com/finley
Coming Aug. 28
The Arizona Daily Star's college football preview section.
Cats land another defensive tackle
Defensive tackle Gerron Borne verbally committed to the UA Tuesday, becoming the 12th player to join the Wildcats' 2012 recruiting class.
The 6-foot-2-inch, 270-pound Borne is coming off a monster junior season at East St. John High School in Reserve, La. Borne registered 45 tackles and eight sacks at a position - defensive tackle - that doesn't usually get to the quarterback as much as an end.
Borne, 17, said he chose the UA for three reasons: Its engineering department, the campus and the football program's ability to produce NFL players.
"The school is on the come-up, and I want to be a part of that," he said. "I couldn't pass up on this opportunity."
The Scout.com recruiting service lists Borne as a three-star recruit and the nation's 51st-best defensive tackle prospect. He chose the Wildcats over offers from Illinois, Pittsburgh and Tennessee.