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October 30, 2013
The 26th CSU Sports Hall of Fame banquet, sponsored by the Ram Alumni Athletes Association, is set for 5 p.m. Friday at the Fort Collins Hilton.
Ralph Hutton was a small-town Canadian who ended up taking the world by storm en route to becoming one of the most successful male swimmers in CSU history.
Hutton, who grew up in an isolated village in northern British Columbia, is one of five Rams to earn an Olympic medal, winning the silver medal in the 1969 Mexico City Games while competing in the 400-meter freestyle. Earlier that year, Hutton set world and collegiate records while winning an NCAA title in the same event.
While 1968 was the pinnacle of Hutton’s career, what truly defined him was his ability to compete for 10 years at an extremely high level. He swam in his first international competition at age 15 and retired with 24 international medals earned at the Pan Am Games, Commonwealth Games and the Olympics.
He was the first Canadian male athlete to compete in three consecutive Olympics (1964, ’68, ’72), and reached the finals each time.
His CSU career began in 1968, and over the next four years he established himself as one of the school’s finest athletes. He won three Western Athletic Conference titles and set numerous CSU and conference records, including WAC standards in the 200-, 500- and 1,600-meter freestyle races in 1970.
Hutton is a member of the British Columbia Sports Hall of Fame, Canadian Swimming Hall of Fame, the Canadian Sports Hall of Fame, the Canadian Olympic Hall of Fame, and the International Swimming Hall of Fame.
Hutton is one of six former CSU standouts being inducted into the school’s sports hall of fame. Other honorees include Allison Peckham (volleyball), Willis Holland (football and wrestling), Marne Findlay (track and cross country), Bradlee Van Pelt (football) and Joey Porter (football).
Tickets for the annual banquet are $70 for RAAA members, $75 for non-members. They can be purchased onlineor by calling (877) 498-7787.