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Oregon athletic department hosts surplus sale

EUGENE, Ore. -- The University of Oregon doesn't like to do anything on a small scale. So why would anyone expect the athletic department's garage sale to be anything other than huge?

Thousands passed through the doors of the indoor practice fields, the Moshofsky Center, and made their way through the rows of Oregon-issued shoes, sweatshirts, jerseys and knickknacks on Sunday morning during the school's annual surplus sale, which sells off the items for which the Oregon athletic department no longer has use.

With roughly 15,000 items for the sale at prices ranging from a few dollars to close to $100, the university pulled in tens of thousands of dollars for the department's general scholarship fund.

The hot-ticket items were game-issued uniforms from athletes who have graduated or left Oregon ($50). The university keeps every single jersey for the players during their time at the school and then gives them the opportunity to buy them from the school at the end of their careers. Most players did this, so fans weren't able to find jerseys from Marcus Mariota, Hroniss Grasu or Ifo Ekpre-Olomu as they thumbed through the racks.

Fans also could purchase shoes, cleats, tennis rackets and balls, warm-ups, Speedos, wall hangings that had been in the locker rooms, helmets, and pads, among other items.

Fans sprinted around the Moshofsky Center tossing their purchases in trash bags. Some only needed a short time to fill up the trash bag as there was no limit on how much an individual could buy, and with the markdowns (e.g. Nike sweatshirt with retail tags for $170 going for $20) it seemed as though fans were stocking up for themselves, their families and any birthday gift they might need during the next calendar year.

The most unique item for sale was an Oregon urn (there were two -- green and yellow), which was priced at $10. (It should also be noted that these items were picked off in the first 20 minutes of the sale.) These were at the promo table, which essentially held items that had been sent to the university by dealers in the hopes that Oregon might decide to purchase some. Because of this, Ducks fans also could buy items such as a Marcus Lattimore plaque or a Tennessee football jacket.

About 20 minutes into the sale, Macklemore's "Thrift Shop" started playing over the loud speakers, which made sense considering the cheap prices. But with fans hauling trash bags full of treasures, it seemed like people had much greater luck at the Oregon surplus sale than they would at any thrift shop.

Unlike the worn-out items found at thrift shops, fans will be able to enjoy some of these new or lightly-used items for the rest of their lives.

And for the two people who were lucky enough to snag the urns, well, they'll be able to enjoy their finds even longer.