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.

Ron Straka


Inducted: 2001

A highly touted running back from the St. Peter State Championship team of 1976, Ron Straka made an immediate impact on the Gustavus football program when he returned a kickoff 101 yards for a touchdown on his first collegiate play against Augustana College. A gifted runner, Straka was as proficient at turning the corner as he was bursting up the middle. He teamed with Jay Schoenebeck to form what many feel was the best running-back tandem in school history. Straka finished his career as the second leading rusher in school history with 3,071 yards. In his senior season, Straka rushed for 952 yards on 187 carries and nine touchdowns. He was selected the Gusties' Most Valuable Player and he also earned All-Conference, All-Region, and Honorable Mention All-America honors. He still holds two school records outright, including longest kick return at 101 yards and highest average per carry in a career at 6.1 yards per rush. Straka shares the school records for most points scored in a career (224) and touchdowns scored in a career (37) with Jay Schoenebeck.
A cum laude graduate with a major in accounting, Straka went on to work for Hughes Aircraft and ADC Telecommunications as a financial analyst before joining Crown College as a senior accountant in 1990. He became the comptroller at Crown in 1999 and has served in that post for the past two years. Ron has stayed very involved in athletics as a youth coach and he has served as an assistant football coach at Crown for the past five years. Ron and his wife Lisa (Laitala '81), live in Chaska, with their children, Danielle (13), John (11), and Allison (9).