It was back in October of 2020 when our very own Steve Kaplowitz wrote an article with the headline: “UTEP Needs a Bronze Statue of Don Haskins Outside The DHC.”

Fast forward 4 years later and that long overdue statue will now become a reality thanks to El Pasoans Dan and JoAnn Longoria. (Talk about manifestations coming true!)

“The Don Haskins statue is a dream come true for me and every Miner fan.” -Steve Kaplowitz

The University of Texas at El Paso announced that UTEP would be home to a seven-foot statue honoring the iconic basketball coach, Don Haskins.

This special tribute was gifted to the university by El Pasoans and VP of Mattress Firm, Dan and JoAnn Longoria.

“Our hearts are filled with excitement as we prepare to unveil this tribute to the El Paso community."


Coach Haskins, the maestro behind the Miners' historic national title win, made history on March 19, 1966, by starting five African American players in the championship game against the heavily favored Kentucky Wildcats. 

His influence goes beyond the court; he was a beacon of inspiration, promoting equal opportunities for minority student-athletes.

UTEP President Heather Wilson is thrilled about the statue, saying, "This statue is a fitting way to honor Don Haskins, a great El Pasoan who forever changed the game." 

UTEP Athletics.
UTEP Athletics.

Coach Haskins, who led the Miners for an impressive 38 years, left an indelible mark with 719 wins, 14 NCAA Tournament appearances, and seven WAC championships.

The statue will be crafted by master sculptor Brian Hanlon and will capture Coach Haskins' iconic court side pose. 

Courtesy: UTEP
Courtesy: UTEP

You can witness the unveiling of this monumental tribute to a basketball legend at the "Celebration of Don Haskins" pep rally on Feb. 24 at 4 p.m. outside the Don Haskins Center, just before the UTEP men's basketball game against Sam Houston. 

Hey Steve, can you manifest me winning the lottery?

Don Haskins Statue

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