Athletic Hall of Fame

The Gustavus Adolphus College Hall of Fame was established in 1978 at which time 19 "Charter Members" were inducted either as coaches or as athletes. As of the fall of 2022, 348 individuals (321 athletes, 16 coaches and 11 benefactors) have been elected to the Hall of Fame.

The former Hall of Fame room on the second floor of the Lund Center was originally partially endowed by the families of both Dwight Holcombe's (the only father/son combination holding membership in the Hall). The hardwood plaque upon which the individual plates are permanently displayed, now in the Hall of Champions, was donated by the family of former football coach and Hall of Fame member Jocko Nelson, who passed away in 1978.

Dennis Raarup


Inducted: 1995

A member of three MIAC Championship football teams as a defensive back and kicker and an outfielder on the baseball team during the early 1950's, Dennis Raarup made his most significant contributions to the Gustavus athletic department on the sidelines as the head football coach from 1971 until 1987. After coaching at several different high schools in Wisconsin following his graduation from Gustavus, Raarup returned to his alma mater as assistant football, head wrestling and head baseball coach in 1968.
After three seasons as an assistant to Jocko Nelson, Raarup was named the head football coach in 1972. He wasted no time making his impact felt as his 1971 and 1972 squads claimed cofrerence titles with identical 6-1 records. During his 17-year tenure, Raarup's squads won three conference titles, fmished second four times and third twice and his 1987 team finished with a perfect 10-0-0 regular season record. Raarup was named MIAC Coach of the Year in 1971, 19 2, 1977 and 1987, NAIA District 14 Coach of the Year In 1972, and the American Football Coaches Association's Area 6 Coach of the Year in 1987. He is the winningest coach in Gustavus football history with a record of 99-68-1. Raarup also coached the baseball team to the conference title in 1971.
After graduating with majors in math and physical education, Raarup went on to earn a master's in physical education from the University of Minnesota and a doctorate in physical education from Northern Colorado University, He has served as a member of the physical education faculty at Gustavus for the past 28 years inctuding the past 1l as chair of the department. Dennis and his wife, Sharon, have three children Todd, Tami, and Troy.