Browse Exhibits (25 total)

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The Forgotten Superstar: Larry Jeffries and Trinity's Athletic Culture

Larry Jeffries achieved an unprecedented amount of success as a Trinity Basketball player, reaching consensus First Team All-American status as a Senior. However, because of Trinity's status as a Division 3 institution, Jeffries' legacy remains unknown to most tiger fans. Like most Trinity Athletic heroes, Jeffries' story fell through the cracks of history. Fortunately, Trinitonian and Mirage articles still exist to document his remarkable accomplishments. Jeffries' own account of events supplements these primary sources, and the resulting story touches on the racial climate of NCAA Basketball, Trinity's "Peach Fuzz Five" and Jeffries' ascension to becoming one of the top players in the country.



The Beginning of a Dynasty: The History of Trinity Tennis

This exhibit will take you through the history of Trinity tennis starting at its first National Championship. It will explore the transition from Division I to Division III and conclude with a summary of the program up until the present.


“‘I’ve never heard my name chanted before, and when I won, it was the greatest feeling I’ve ever had on tennis court’” (Neyland, 1978, p. 10). Star Trinity tennis player Larry Gottfried explained his emotions after a monumental win over Wimbledon semi-finalist and freshman, Stanford standout John McEnroe (Neyland, 1978, p. 10). The two played at the number one singles spot after Stanford swept the doubles winning all three matches (Spaeth, 1978, p. 6). The history of Trinity tennis is full of standout players and championship teams, and this match is just one example of the dynasty that this Division I Trinity tennis program built.


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Chuck McKinley: The Top-Ranked Student Athlete

This exhibit will highlight the ability that Trinity tennis superstar, Chuck McKinley, had to control his student-athlete lifestyle amidst a celebrity like status on Trinity’s campus and across the world. A control that was only possible through mastery of his own personal attributes. McKinley is the only collegiate athlete in the history of tennis to win Wimbledon while in college, and has several other eye-opening achievements while a student at Trinity University as well.


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Rugby: A Stroll Through the 1960's to the 1990's

“…It is for that daring soul who is tired of American football and wants something more demanding and exciting” (Woodruff, 1974).  Those were the words of Chuck Butterick, president of the 1974 Trinity University Rugby team, expressing his attitudes about the sport.  Just that year, the “Ruggers” from Trinity won their division, beating a strong Austin team, and finished second in the state behind the Dallas Harlequins, making them one of the single most successful rugby teams of Trinity’s History.  Rewind to April of 1968.  The makeshift Trinity University rugby team, made up of an assortment of athletes who had little to no experience playing the sport, were facing the experienced, English influenced University of Texas team on their very own E.M. Stevens field.  Not only was this Trinity’s first attempt at rugby in over forty years, but according to the 1968 edition of Trinity’s school newspaper, the Trinitonian, this was “the first English football match ever played in San Antonio” (Corbitt, 1968).  13-11, Trinity comes out on top.

            Having reminisced of successful moments in the history of Trinity rugby like those previously mentioned, it would not be out of the ordinary to question the sport’s lacking presence at Trinity today.  Alternatively, a better question might be: what made rugby a popular phenomenon at Trinity in its prime years? To answer this, and in order to fully appreciate rugby’s presence at Trinity, we will take a stroll through the history of rugby at Trinity beginning in the 1960’s and ending in the early 1990’s.  The construction of this exhibit will not only present the high points of rugby at Trinity, it will also discuss why the sport was popular at Trinity during those years, drawing on societal issues and events that most likely influenced students’ interest in the game. 



The Trinity Women’s Tennis Team 1981-1985: A Tradition Unlike Any Other

This exhibit highlights the women's tennis team and their success from 1981-1985. 


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Title IX at Trinity: Let us play too!

Looking into the inequality of finances between mens and women's athletics at Trinity University during the implementation of Title IX


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With the 21st Pick in the 1968 NFL Draft...

This exhibit highlights one of Trinity University's most versitle football player and leading scorer, Marvin Upshaw. 





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Marvin Upshaw: Collegiate Athletics, Racial Equality, & Trinity University

Marvin Allen Upshaw was born on November 22nd, 1946 in Robstown, Texas; a town nearly two hours south of San Antonio (Hall of Fame, 2001). When it came time for Upshaw to make a college decision nearly eighteen years later, Upshaw decided to take his talents to the one and only Trinity University in the fall of 1964. At the time, Trinity University was a small and private Presbyterian affiliated institution located in the heart of downtown San Antonio. Rather than follow older brother Gene to Texas A&I, Upshaw took his own leap of faith by accepting a scholarship to play both football and baseball for Trinity. 

Upon Upshaw’s arrival on campus in the fall of 1964, he immediately stood out for both his size, at six-foot-four and 245 lbs. (“Tiger lineman plays tough”, September 1967, p. 11), as well as his skin color. The demographic of Trinity’s campus was purely white and the majority of students came from upper middle to upper class families (Pritz, 2016). Trinity then, as now, was a small school where most students knew one another (Weiss, 2016). Although one of the few African American students on campus, Upshaw would prove to be accepted by teammates, coaches, and classmates through being a standout athlete on the football field, on the baseball diamond, and by serving as president for the “T” Association. 


Coaches, Teammates, and Classmates on Upshaw

Head coach Earl Gartman shared with The Trinitonian in the fall of 1967 that Upshaw was as good as any lineman in Texas and the best player Trinity has to offer (“Tiger lineman plays tough,” September 1967, p. 11). Following Upshaw’s invite to the Senior bowl following the season, Gartman added on to his comments about Upshaw as being “one of the best football players I’ve ever seen, let alone coached,” (“Upshaw All American; invited to Senior bowl,” December 1967, p. 7). 

Teammate Greg Lens cited Upshaw as his greatest inspiration on the field and trying to beat Upshaw in on-field performance is one of his top challenges (Mervin, October 1967, p. 10).

Ron Pritz, a Trinity graduate in 1969, first started his friendship with Upshaw during the two weeks of two-a-days for football in the summer of 1965. Pritz (2016) shared that "Marvin was a wonderful guy, remarkably friendly, and easy to know and be around."

Eric Weiss, a Trinity graduate in 1968, took Opera Literature with Upshaw and had the opportunity to get to know Upshaw both in the classroom and while studying together. Weiss (2016) shared that "Upshaw was very well known at Trinity, both as a superb athlete, and as an all-around nice guy."

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The Woman, the Myth, the Legend: Libby Johnson

The story of Libby Johnson and the impact she made at Trinity University from 1972-1980 after the implication of Title IX. 

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Trinity baseball defies the odds

This exhibit will focus on the use of smokeless tobacco in the baseball world. Dipping is an addiction and the baseball team of '92 kicked the dangerous habit. 


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History of The Trinity Swim Team's Accomplishments and Team Culture

The Trinity swim team has been nationally recognized for producing many swimmers who compete at a national level. This exhibit hopes to bring to light some of these individuals who have helped make the swim team what it is today, and how the team culture is an important aspect of the team's accomplishments. 


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Coach Carla Spenkoch and Trinity Golf since 1997

This Exhibit is a spotlight on the Trinity University golf program, both men and women focusing on the found succeess under Carla Spenkoch from 1997-2005 for the Men's program and from 1997-2016 for the women's program.