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.

Dean Kraus


Inducted: 2004

One of the most versatile and prolific quarterbacks in Gustavus football history, Dean Kraus threw for 5,760 yards and 45 touchdowns and rushed for 948 yards and 21 touchdowns from 1985 to 1988. He essentially re-wrote the football program's offensive record book as well as helping the team set numerous school, conference, and national records. Kraus served notice that he would be a force to be reckoned with in his second start as a freshman in 1985. With the Gusties trailing 29-8 to Bethel in the fourth quarter, he engineered arguably the greatest comeback in the program's history, completing 18 of 29 passes, including three for touchdowns, as Gustavus rallied for a 42-29 victory. Kraus set the school record for yards passing in a game (which still stands today) with 403.

In his junor season of 1987, Kraus directed the Gusties to an undefeated regular season (10-0) and helped the program claim its first Minnesota Intercollegiate Athletic Conference (MIAC) title since 1972. The Hopkins, Minn., native, who was named the league's Most Valuable Player at the end of the season, was the architect of five furious fourth-quarter rallies that allowed the Gusties to claim victory in the final minutes each time. The "Cardiac Tour" of 1987 is thought of by many as the most exciting season in the storied history of Golden Gustie football. In 1988, Kraus finished his career as the all-time leader in total offense in MIAC history with 6,072 yards. He also set the Gustavus all-time mark with 6,708 yards.

Graduating in 1989 with a major in mathematics, Kraus began his career with EDS Corporation in Flint, Mich. He is currently the manager of data services of Wilson Learning Corporation in Eden Prairie. Dean lives in Eagan, Minn., with his wife Janell, and their sons, Kevin (8), Thomas (6), and Jason (4).