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Digital Collections

Tom Borrelli University at Buffalo Football Program Collection, 1930-2010

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The Tom Borrelli University at Buffalo football programs collection contains programs from UB and opposing teams from the 1930s to 2010. The rich history of the University at Buffalo’s Buffalo Bulls spans decades and is well documented in this collection. Included in the programs are team rosters, season schedules, photographs of various teams and events, and local advertisements specific to the college hosting the program. There is a gap in coverage between the following years: 1975-1986, 1986-1993, 1993-2000, and 2004-2010. The history of collegiate sports at the University at Buffalo began in 1894 when the football team played their inaugural season. Although the entire UB athletics program was cancelled in 1904 due to a lack of financial support, personnel, and leadership, it was reinstated in 1915. All intercollegiate athletics were suspended for the duration of World War II. UB sport teams returned in 1946 and the football program continued to grow and flourish. The football program has celebrated many accomplishments over the decades. The UB Bulls won the Lambert Cup in 1958 and the Mid-American Conference in 2008. On September 4th, 1993, the Bulls joined Division I for the first time since the establishment of the three subdivisions in 1973. September 28th, 2013 marked the Bulls bowl eligibility for the third time after their 41-12 win over Connecticut.

This collection of football programs was compiled by Tom Borrelli. Born September 12th, 1957 in Buffalo, New York, Borrelli was a prominent sports journalist and reporter, the first ever to be inducted into the National Lacrosse League Hall of Fame in 2007. He graduated from St. Joseph’s Collegiate Institute in 1975 and from SUNY Buffalo State in 1979. He worked for newspapers in Bluefield, West Virginia; Binghamton, New York; and Painesville, Ohio as part of their sports departments before he began working at The Buffalo News in October, 1989; and continued reporting for the News until his death in 2008. He covered the Buffalo Bandits, Buffalo’s professional lacrosse team and local high school sports teams in Western New York. In 2005, the National Lacrosse League created a scholarship in his honor. Originally for the league’s writer of the year, it changed, along with its title (Media Person of the Year) in 2011 to allow for a broader range of media members within the league to qualify for the award.

Tom Borrelli was severely injured at Robert Rich All High Stadium while covering a local high school football game on November 8th, 2008; passing away two weeks later at the age of 51 on November 20th. Following his death in 2008, The Buffalo News created a scholarship along with a trophy named in his honor in 2009. Each year the scholarship and trophy goes to the top high school lacrosse player in Western New York.