As a UTEP fan who experienced the Miners basketball success in the 1980s, I loved Hernell "Jeep" Jackson. The popular point guard who wore #22 was known for his confidence, leadership, and smile. He was also a terrific basketball player who was a favorite of Don Haskins. Tragically, Jeep passed away in May of 1987 as he was preparing for the NBA Draft the following month. Next Friday, he will be joining four other former Miners and the 2000 football team in the Class of the 2020 UTEP Athletics Hall of Fame. The induction ceremony was postponed last year due to COVID and the university did not elect a Hall of Fame Class for 2021. In addition to Jeep and the 2000 Miners, former wide receiver Lee Mays, women's basketball player Holly Russ, tennis star Tanja "Mad Dog" Magoc, and soccer star Jami Tullius will be immortalized next Friday night.

UTEP Athletics.
UTEP Athletics.

When you look closely into the 2020 class, every athlete was a star. Mays played for the Pittsburgh Steelers and he has a Super Bowl ring. Russ is the only Miner to score 1,000 points in just two seasons, while Tullius is still the program's all-time leading scorer. Magoc went to a pair of NCAA Tournaments, and she is the first tennis player to be inducted into the UTEP Hall.

The 2000 UTEP football team, coached by Gary Nord, was the WAC co-champs and they went on to play the Humanitarian Bowl against Boise State.

For the first time ever, UTEP is hosting the event at the Sun Bowl. For $50, fans will receive dinner and a floor ticket to watch the festivities. There will also be a social that starts at 6:30 p.m., before the dinner and ceremony at 7. For tickets, fans can purchase them online. The Hall of Fame Class will also be honored at next Saturday night's football game against La Tech. Fans who purchase a Hall of Fame ticket will also have an opportunity to sit in sections 8 or 9 for the football game against the Bulldogs for $16 (regularly $20).

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