Skip to Content

Coach ‘Sep’ Stepping Aside After 47 Years At Andress High

He’s been called an “institution” and the Dean of Borderland High School football coaches.

But after nearly a half century at Andress High School, Allan Sepkowitz is retiring.

“Forty-seven years has really gone by pretty fast,” said Sepkowitz, who turns 72-years-old next month.

Although his health is good, after nearly 50 years at the same school, during which he coached hundreds of players and touched thousands of lives, he’s decided it’s time to walk away.

“When I got here in 1965, it was kind of a barren school,” Sepkowitz said with a smile. “There were a few houses out here.”

Sepkowitz, who played at New Mexico State, said he nearly ended up coaching at another El Paso school.

“I’d gotten a contract to go to Burges High as a ninth-grade football and track coach,” Sepkowitz said.

But an old NMSU teammate hired him at Andress and the rest is history.

“I just felt like in life there’s a little niche for you, and I just felt like that niche was working with high school kids,” Sepkowitz said, explaining why he stayed at Andress so long.

Kids like Brian Young and Paul Smith, both of whom starred for UTEP and went on to play in the NFL.

“We’ve developed some men that have gone out and done quite well in their careers,” he said. “There’s no way you can reach everybody, but thank goodness we’ve reached more than we have not reached.”

Perhaps what’s most amazing about Coach Sepkowitz’s lengthy career is his consistency over the years, including 258 victories, 14 district championships and 17 bi-district championships, including one in his final season.

“The game has changed so much with the wide-open offensives that are run today and the different more complicated defenses,” Sepkowitz said. “We thought about leaving, but it just got ingrained into me and I just wanted to stay here.”

Much like former UTEP basketball coach and Naismith Hall of Famer Don Haskins, who coached 39 seasons in El Paso.

“I guess so,” Sepkowitz said of the comparison to Haskins. “I guess you could say that because if I could be in the same breath as Coach Haskins, then I guess we’ve done something right.”

Sepkowitz admitted it’s tough to walk away, even in his 70s.

“It’ll be emotional, it really will, and I knew it was coming,” he said. “It had to be coming sometime along the way and it’s time to do it now.”

Sepkowitz said his age, coupled with the focus on standardized testing in schools and less on athletics, convinced him it was time to turn in his whistle. He added he’s most proud of the lives he changed through football.

Related Links:Video: Full Allan Sepkowitz Interview

Article Topic Follows: News

Jump to comments ↓

Author Profile Photo



KVIA ABC 7 is committed to providing a forum for civil and constructive conversation.

Please keep your comments respectful and relevant. You can review our Community Guidelines by clicking here

If you would like to share a story idea, please submit it here.

Skip to content