Whir Dey Iz Dept.? — Scott English (March 2022)

A high-flyer, Scott English starred for the Miners in both basketball and track.

In the early 1970s, Scott English was one of the most accomplished all-around athletes in the nation. Signed out of California by UTEP Basketball Coach Don Haskins, English was a multiple-year finalist in the NCAA high-jump championships for Coach Wayne Vandenburg. 

English, a 6-6 forward, was drafted in the third round by the NBA Phoenix Suns, then traded into the now-defunct American Basketball Association with clubs in Virginia and San Diego. Still not done, the sky-riding English was a crowd favorite when he played pro volleyball for the El Paso-Juarez Sol club. 

If anybody would have a Scott English story, it would be former UTEP Track Coach Wayne Vandenburg: “I was having breakfast at the home of my California athletes in the Van Nuys area and reading the sports section of the local newspaper that carried the high school track results from the track meet of the day before.

From UTEP, Scott English moved on to pro basketball — and even played some pro volleyball. (Topps photos)

“I noticed that a Scott English from Chatsworth H.S. high-jumped 6-6 or 6-8. My California athlete, either Danny Tague (440 – 880 runner) or Kerry Ellison (880 – Mile), had a younger sister (as i recall who also attended Scott’s high school. I learned that Scott was also an all-league basketball player and was quite tall.  

“I immediately got Scott’s phone number, called him and made arrangements to go over to his house, meet him and his parents. Then I got (basketball coach Don) Haskins to give him a basketball scholarship with the freedom to compete on the track team after the basketball season.”

Now 71 years old, Scott is no-doubt a victim of the earth’s undeniable gravitational pull. Where does Scott live, and what occupies his time these days?

{To answer, write Mark McDonald at mark@DustDevilPublishing.com.}

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