Hundreds of Reels of Sports Films

By on May 21, 2012

Many years ago, after the legendary Don Haskins retired, several boxes of office materials were thrown away. But, when no one was looking, Fernando Mabini rescued the materials from the dumpster and placed on a shelf in the back of an unlit corridor in a storage facility attached to Memorial Gym. There they sat until April 23 when the Special Events crew, in search of more space, found the materials and decided to call in the Treasure Hunt team.

On the phone, the report was something like a few boxes and 40 reels of film. Those items filled a car trunk . . . and then the back of a pickup truck–the estimate grew to 600 reels. In time, the staff of the Special Collections department dusted off the materials and confirmed that there were more than 1,000 reels of 16-mm film from the 1960s through the 1980s, dozens of VCR cassette tapes from the 1980s and 1990s, and several old trophies (including the Sun Bowl of 1937). Later, Jeff Darby, Jon Teicher, and Joe Gomez examined the items to identify the most significant. Now, preservation and digitization work is underway. Hopefully, we can resurrect a few of them by 2014!

Keith A. Erekson served as the Executive Director of UTEP's Centennial Celebration from December 2011 through May 2014. Learn more at