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Sustainable Excellence Initiative

Russell "Sox" Walseth
Basketball/Baseball
Coach/Administrator

  • Six letters at Colorado in basketball and baseball
  • Winningest coach in CU men’s basketball history
  • Six-time conference Coach of the Year
  • First to coach the men’s and women’s program at the same school

A player and long-time basketball coach at Colorado, Russell “Sox” Walseth was likely the first and one of just a few to have coached both the men’s and women’s program at the same NCAA school.  His time at CU spanned 38 years, starting as an athlete in the 1940s when he lettered in both basketball and baseball.  He then worked as the head freshman coach for five years (three under his coach, Frosty Cox, and two under H.B. Lee); after two years as head coach at South Dakota State, he replaced Lee for the 1956-57 season and would proceed to coach 20 Buffalo teams.  The winningest coach in CU men’s basketball history, posting a 261-245 record, the Buffs won three Big Eight titles under his direction, in 1961-62, 1962-63 and 1968-69.  He was the Big Eight Conference coach of the year on five occasions, and his star players included Ken Charlton, Jim Davis, Cliff Meely and Scott Wedman.  He then coached the women’s team between 1980-83, then known as the “Lady Buffs,” compiling an impressive 77-21 record.  That mark included an incredible 43-0 record at home, and once again, he earned coach of the year accolades.  The basketball floor at the Coors Events/Conference Center is named after him, and he is a member of the Colorado Sports Hall of Fame.

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