A look back, a look ahead

This Saturday, the Paisano will celebrate it’s 30th birthday.

Although the Paisano’s actual birthday is January 13, we felt it would be nice to have the party in the warm days of february.

This weeks issue highlights 30 years of history at the Paisano.

It got me thinking, what was going on in the world of sports in 1981.

When the Paisano was born, there were only 26 teams in Major League Baseball. The Texas Rangers were fifteen years away from their first postseason trip. The Houston Astros were the defending National League West Champs and had fought hard with the Philadelphia Phillies in the NLCS. The Phillies won en route to the 1980 world title. 1981 would see the first instance of the division series as a strike caused major league baseball to have two half seasons providing two champions in each division. The Astros would lose to division the rival Los Angeles Dodgers, who would go on to beat the NL East champion Montreal Expos in that teams only postseason appearance.

On the Hardwood, 1981 marked the first time that three teams played in Texas. The Dallas Mavericks were born for the 1980-81 season, they would finish 15-67. The Mavericks brought the NBA to 23 teams. The other two texas teams did a little better. The San Antonio Spurs finished with a 52-30 record and the two seed out west. The Houston Rockets would finish 40-42 but get hot in the playoffs and earn the franchise’s first trip to the NBA finals where Larry Bird and the Boston Celtics topped them in six games. It was the first trip to the finals by a team with a losing record in the regular season.

In 1981, Texas football teams were up and down. The Dallas Cowboys finished the season 12-4 and lost to the San Francisco 49ers in the NFC championship game. The Houston Oilers fell to 7-9 after three years near the top of the AFC. The National Football League boasted 28 teams.

The year of 1981 would be historic at UTSA not just because it was the birth of the Paisano but because it would also be the first year that UTSA had men’s and women’s basketball. It was an important step in becoming the university it is today.

As we look back on the last 30 years, it is exciting to look ahead at the next 30. What will future sports editor have to write about in Paisano. Will the Spurs have won another championship? maybe the Rockets? Maybe the Texans will have made the playoffs. Whatever the case, sports in 2041 will look completely different from 2011. Maybe the Paisano will still be providing sports coverage.