By Nathaniel Montoya:
Collegiate sports at Amarillo College! Yes at one time it was a thing. During the 60s and 70s Amarillo College was home to a men’s basketball team. At their peak the mens college team was ranked 9th in the nation among the junior college polls. One notable alumni for this team was three time NBA all star Larry Kenon. Kenon would later transfer to the University of Memphis where he would lead them to the NCAA national championship game in a losing effort against basketball hall of famer Bill Walton and the UCLA Bruins.
So how would students react to a return of collegiate sports to campus?
River Wilhite, an aviation mechanic major said “I think a sports team would bring much more life to campus, I mean we already have a mascot why not a team.”
A sports team to rally behind could spark a new wave of school spirit among students.
Michel Delgado, a nursing major said “I think a sports team would really bring to school together. I remember when I was in high school one of the few things I’d be excited about were the pep rallys. It really gave the school something to be excited about.”
Students were also surprised to learn that a former NBA all star used to walk the same halls as them.
“I think that’s awesome that someone got that far from a school people don’t think much of really shows that AC can produce greatness.” said Delgado.
Students believe that a sports team could cause a great increase in enrollment.
Astrid Deleon, a psychology major said “I see many people walking around campus that used to be in sports and definitely still love to participate. I believe this would lead to more student enrollment meaning more funds for Amarillo College.”
The Amarillo College basketball team despite having only been around for a short time has made a lasting impact. A majority of the student body would love to see sports come back to campus. But for now students continue to play the waiting game.