The UTEP basketball team will host a ranked opponent for the first time in nearly three years on Monday (Dec. 17) when the UNLV Runnin’ Rebels come to the Don Haskins Center. UNLV is 7-1 heading into a home game versus La Verne on Thursday, and rated no. 17 in the USA Today coaches poll and no. 20 by the Associated Press.
The Miners will also host Oregon on Wednesday (Dec. 19). Oregon is the top team receiving votes in the AP poll. UTEP has hosted two top-25 teams in a three-day span just three times in school history -- in February 1975 (Arizona & Arizona State), January 1981 (Utah & BYU) and March 1993 (BYU & Utah).
TIP-OFF FOR BOTH THE UNLV AND OREGON GAMES IS 6 P.M. MT.
Monday will be “Throwback Night” at the Haskins Center. The Miners will wear Texas Western uniforms and 1966 championship MVP Bobby Joe Hill’s number will be retired. His widow, Tina Hill, will be in attendance at the game.
UTEP is also participating in the “75 Years of March Madness” program in conjunction with the NCAA and the National Association of Basketball Coaches (NABC). A painting of legendary UTEP coach Don Haskins by world-renowned artist Opie Otterstad will be unveiled at halftime of Monday’s game.
The original art piece is part of a collection of 75 individual paintings, one for each of the 75 national championships from 1939 through 2013. The original piece of art will be auctioned off online starting December 18, 2012 at www.NCAA.com/ART . Limited edition reproductions will also be made available for purchase via the same website on the same date. A portion of the proceeds from the auction will benefit the NABC Foundation, which supports TTRR (Ticket to Reading Rewards), the College Basketball Experience (CBE), and the National Collegiate Basketball Hall of Fame.
For complete information about the NCAA and programs celebrating 75 years of March Madness, visit www.ncaa.com/march-madness .
Tickets for the UNLV and Oregon games, starting at just $8, are available by calling (915) 747-5234. Group packages are also for sale by calling (915) 747-7450.