CU Olympians

In 1948 track standout David Bolen (Mktg’50) became the first CU student to participate in the Olympics. Since then nearly 80 Buffs have competed in the Olympics.

Athletes with ties to the Buffaloes did well at the 2012 U.S. Olympic Trials with five Buffs heading to the London games: senior Emma Coburn in the steeplechase, Kara Goucher (Psych’01) in the marathon, senior Shalaya Kipp in the steeplechase, Dathan Ritzenhein (Hist’06) in the 10,000, Jenny Barringer Simpson (Econ, PolSci’09) in the 1,500 and senior Flora Duffy in the triathlon competing for Bermuda.

According to David Plati, associate athletics director, that ties the CU best for the most athletes competing in track for the United States in a Summer Olympics, matching the five in 2008 as Barringer, Goucher and Ritzenhein also participated that year in Beijing. In the 2000 Sydney Games, nine former Buffs were Olympians, six in track, but three competed for their native countries outside the U.S., with one in women’s basketball, one in mountain biking and another in cycling.

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Coburn and Kipp become just the third and fourth Buffs to compete in the Summer Games while still eligible to compete as collegians; the late Ted Woods (football/track) was a sprinter in the 1960 Olympics in Rome, and Barringer competed in the steeplechase in 2008 – both were juniors as are Coburn and Kipp.

What was the most athletes CU has ever had in a single Olympics? The 1972 Winter games when 13 represented the Buffs, followed by 12 in the 1968 Winter games. Read about our alums who have played pivotal roles behind the scenes of the Olympics.

Check out the 2012 London Olympics Schedule

Summer 2012 – London

Jenny (Barringer) Simpson – Track and Field
Emma Coburn – Track and Field
Kara (Grgas-Wheeler) Goucher – Track and Field
Shalaya Kipp – Track and Field
Dathan Ritzenhein – Track and Field

Winter 2010 – Vancouver

Casey Puckett, – Alpine Skiing
Daron Rahlves – Alpine Skiing
Tyler Shepherd – Freestyle Skiing Coach

Summer 2008 – Beijing

Kara (Grgas-Wheeler) Goucher – Track and Field
Billy Nelson – Track and Field
Aija Putnina – Basketball (Competed for Latvia)
Dathan Ritzenhein – Track and Field
Jenny (Barringer) Simpson – Track and Field
Jorge Torres – Track and Field

Winter 2006 – Torino

Neha Ahuja – Alpine Skiing (Competed for India)
Jeremy Bloom – Freestyle Skiing
Justun Freeman – Nordic Skiing
Daron Rahlves – Alpine Skiing
Tommy Schwall – Ski Jumping

Summer 2004 – Athens

Susan Bartholomew-Williams – Track and Field – 1 Bronze – Triathlon
Alan Culpepper – Track and Field
Deirdre Dement Barry – Cycling – 1 Silver- Women’s Individual Time Trial
Tyler Hamilton – Cycling – 1 Gold- Men’s Individual Time Trial
Jeremy Horgan-Kobelski – Mountain Biking
Dathan Ritzenhein – Track and Field
Shayne (Wille) Culpepper – Track and Field

Winter 2002 – Salt Lake City

Tahir Bisic – Alpine Skiing (Competed for Bosnia)
Jeremy Bloom – Freestyle Skiing
Katerina Hanusova – Nordic Skiing (Competed for Czech Republic)
Casey Puckett – Alpine Skiing
Daron Rahlves – Alpine Skiing
Tommy Schwall – Ski Jumping

Summer 2000 – Sydney

Travis Brown – Mountain Biking
Hannah Cooper – Track and Field (Competed for Liberia)
Alan Culpepper – Track and Field
Karol Damon – Track and Field
Adam Goucher – Track and Field
Tyler Hamilton – Cycling
Yvonne Scott – Track and Field (Competed for Japan)
Shayne (Wille) Culpepper – Track and Field

Winter 1998 – Nagano

Shannon Dunn – Snowboarding – 1 Bronze- Halfpipe
Katerina Hanusova – Nordic Skiing (Competed for Czech Republic)
Lucie Hanusova – Nordic Skiing (Competed for Czech Republic)
Andy LeRoy – Alpine Skiing
Casey Puckett – Alpine Skiing
Daron Rahlves – Alpine Skiing
Ondrej Valenta – Nordic Skiing (Competed for Czech Republic)

Summer 1996 – Atlanta

Ceal Barry – Women’s Basketball Coach – 1 Gold
Mary Decker Slaney – Track and Field
Julie Furtado – Mountain Biking
Eva Orvosova – Mountain Biking (Competed for Slovakia)
Yvonne Scott – Track and Field (Competed for Japan)

Winter 1994 – Lillehammer

Ingrid Langell Butts – Nordic Skiing
Caroline Gedde-Dahl – Alpine Skiing (Competed for Norway)
Ben Husaby – Nordic Skiing
Casey Puckett – Alpine Skiing
Joseph Sawyer – Bobsled

Winter 1992 – Albertville

Ingrid Langell Butts – Nordic Skiing
Ben Husaby – Nordic Skiing
Casey Puckett – Alpine Skiing
Joseph Sawyer – Bobsled

Summer 1992 – Barcelona

Tim Peddie – Cycling

Winter 1988 – Calgary

Ingrid Langell Butts – Nordic Skiing
Pam Fletcher – Alpine Skiing
Beth Madsen – Alpine Skiing
Kristen Petty – Nordic Skiing
Debi Thomas – Figure Skating – 1 Bronze

Summer 1988 – Seoul

Mary Decker Slaney – Track and Field

Winter 1984 – Sarajevo

Bill Marolt – Alpine Skiing Coach

Summer 1984 – Los Angeles

Art Burns – Track and Field
Mary Decker Slaney – Track and Field

Winter 1980 – Lake Placid

Cary Adgate – Alpine Skiing
Mike Devecka – Nordic Skiing Coach
Bill Marolt – Alpine Skiing Coach
Pete Patterson – Alpine Skiing

Winter 1976 – Innsbruck

Cary Adgate – Alpine Skiing
Robert Olen Berkley Jr – Luge
Richard Price Cavanaugh – Luge
Mike Devecka – Nordic Skiing Coach
Greg Jones – Alpine Skiing
Pete Patterson – Alpine Skiing
Ronald P. Yaeger – Nordic Skiing

Summer 1976 – Montreal

Jane Wardell Frederick – Track and Field
Debra Wilcox – Gymnastics
William Jankunis – Track and Field

Winter 1972 – Sapporo

Robert Olen Berkley Jr. – Luge
Douglas Berndt – Figure Skating
Richard Price Cavanaugh – Luge
Mike Devecka – Nordic Skiing Coach
Margaret Ann Frair – Luge
Michael Donald Gallagher – Nordic Skiing
Robert Hawes Gray – Nordic Skiing
Hank Kashiwa – Alpine Skiing
Robert C. Kendall – Nordic Skiing
Michael Lafferty – Alpine Skiing
Clark Matis – Nordic Skiing
Jay Jr. Rand – Nordic Skiing
Ronald P. Yaeger – Nordic Skiing

Summer 1972 – Munich

Hank Iba – Men’s Basketball Coach – 1 Silver
Jane Wardell Frederick – Track and Field
James Cunningham Wofford – Equestrian

Winter 1968 – Grenoble

Jim Barrows – Alpine Skiing
Bob Beattie – Alpine Skiing Coach
Mike Devecka – Nordic Skiing Coach
Michael Donald Gallagher – Nordic Skiing
Robert Hawes Gray – Nordic Skiing
Jimmie Heuga – Alpine Skiing
Robert C. Kendall – Nordic Skiing
William “Billy” Kidd – Alpine Skiing
Jay Rand Jr. – Nordic Skiing
Vladimir “Spider” Sabich – Alpine Skiing
Sandra Shellworth – Alpine Skiing
Thomas F. Upham – Nordic Skiing

Summer 1968 – Mexico City

Hank Iba – Men’s Basketball Coach – 1 Gold
William Toomey – Track and Field – 1 Gold- Decathlon
James Cunningham Wofford – Equestrian

Winter 1964 – Innsbruck

Bob Beattie – Alpine Skiing Coach
Michael Donald Gallagher – Nordic Skiing
Jimmie Heuga – Alpine Skiing – 1 Bronze- Slalom
William “Billy”Kidd – Alpine Skiing – 1 Silver- Slalom
William Marolt – Alpine Skiing
Annibale John “Ni” Orsi – Alpine Skiing
Wallace J. “Buddy” Werner – Alpine Skiing

Summer 1964 – Tokyo

Hank Iba – Men’s Basketball Coach – 1 Gold

Winter 1960 – Squaw Valley

Frank E. Brown – Alpine Skiing
John G. Dendahl – Nordic Skiing
Donald Wilkinson Jenkins – Figure Skating

Summer 1960 – Rome

Burdette Haldorson – Basketball – 1 Gold
Ted Woods – Track and Field

Winter 1956 – Cortina d’Ampezzo

Donald Wilkinson Jenkins – Figure Skating
Wallace J. “Buddy” Werner – Alpine Skiing

Summer 1956 – Melbourne / Stockholm

Burdette Haldorson – Basketball – 1 Gold
Robert Jeangerard – Basketball – 1 Gold

Summer 1948 – London

David Bolen – Track and Field

3 Responses to CU Olympians

  1. Thomas Chin says:

    Chauncey Billups was asked by Coach Larry Brown to join the Athens 2004 USA Men
    Olympic Basketball Team as a Point-Guard. Billups turned down the request.
    Subsequently, Billups tried to make the Beijing Olympics(2008) & London
    Olympics (2012) but could not make the rosters. Lesson: Take advantage of
    opportunities in life when they present themselves.

  2. Richard Ball says:

    The Late Jimmy Huega, was a great asset to CU. He joined our Fraternity SAE after the 1964 Bronze ski metal and was a warm, fun and very humble person. Coach Bob Beattie asked the Greek system to give the ski team free boad and room and we did. Jimmy enjoyed our house so much he just decided to join it. We put him out on the front steps for Rush week that fall and he was a big asset.

  3. Jeff Carey says:

    Who are we to say what is in the best interest of Chauncey Billups life? He has had an unbelievable career and accomplished so much. Thanks for bringing pride to the Buffs name and city of Denver Chauncey!

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