Best Team: Unfortunately, the best team at CSU isn’t even a varsity team. The CSU men’s club lacrosse team is 47-6 over the past three seasons. I dare anyone to find a CSU team with a better record. Head coach Flip Naumburg consistently prepares his players to compete at a very high level. While the lacrosse team obviously competes against lesser talent than at the varsity level, the record is no less impressive – they are the best at their competitive level. The 2006 team is 14-3 and will be one of the favorites to win the MDIA National Championships starting May 9.
Best Athlete: There was only one CSU athlete to be drafted into a professional league this year: Dave Anderson. With the 251st pick in the NFL draft, Anderson was selected by the Houston Texans. Who needs Reggie Bush when you have Dave Anderson? All joking aside, this guy left everything he had on the football field. He set school records for most catches (222) and most receiving yards (3,634), even though he’s just 5-feet-9-inches. During the 2005 season, Anderson caught 86 passes for 1,221 yards with eight touchdowns. He may be one of the best football players to have worn the green and gold.
Best Coach: This is the most obvious choice to me. There is one varsity program that has clearly surpassed all the others at CSU – and much of the credit should go to the coach. Tom Hilbert has taken the volleyball team to 11 consecutive NCAA tournament appearances. CSU recruits great athletes for volleyball, but it is Hilbert who molds them into a great team. It really appears that he brings in players that will work in his system. At CSU, Hilbert has an outstanding record of 241-54 and led the team to a 21-9 record this year.
Best Game: While the CSU-Utah football game was certainly memorable (considering the goal-line stand as well as my roommate getting booted from Hughes Stadium for fighting), the best game of the year was played at Moby Arena: the CSU-CU men’s basketball match-up. First off, the rivalry is better. And second, the Rams beat a better team. Sean Morris went off for 34 points that game, including a three-pointer, which tied the game at 79 with 54 seconds left. On top of that, Colorado star guard Richard Roby missed one of his free throws sparking a thunderous roar inside Moby Arena. It was the team that performed that night but it was the crowd that lifted them. After the game, I talked to Morris and he said, “That’s what college basketball is all about.”
I couldn’t agree more.
Scott Bondy is the Collegian’s associate managing editor for sports and special sections.