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 2019, 327 individuals (305 athletes, 15 coaches and 10 benefactors) have been elected to the Hall of Fame.

The beautiful 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 was donated by the family of former football coach and Hall of Fame member Jocko Nelson, who passed away in 1978.

Doug Espenson

Basketball

Inducted: 2021

A high level of intensity coupled with pure athleticism made Doug Espenson one of the best all-around players in Gustavus men’s basketball history. Espenson’s work ethic and drive to become an elite player showed early in his career as he earned a spot on the MIAC First-Year Team and helped the Gusties reach the third round of the 2002 NCAA tournament. The Mankato, Minn. native elevated his game with the help of a talented group of teammates, and that became clear during his sophomore season as the team made it all the way to the NCAA Division III championship game where Espenson was named to the All-Tournament Team. He played an integral role off the bench and was honored with the 2003-04 MIAC Sixth Man Award.

Espenson’s motivation to be the best showed in his preparation off the court as well, where he meticulously studied film of opposing teams. During his junior and senior seasons, Espenson helped the Gusties capture back-to-back MIAC championships. In both of those seasons, he was named to the MIAC All-Conference and All-Defensive Teams, as well as the All-Region Teams. He capped his career by earning the 2004-05 MIAC MVP and was selected NABC Second Team All-America.

Having the unique ability to play nearly every position on the court, Espenson finished his career with 1,281 points, ranking 12th in program history. He made 127-of-324 three-pointers, which ranks ninth, and posted 111 career blocks, ranking third. Espenson did not miss a single game in his career—out of 118—and was a part of Gustavus teams that posted an overall record of 92-25 and 67-13 in the MIAC from 2001-05 with four NCAA tournament appearances.

After graduating cum laude in 2005 with a major in economics and finance, Espenson has built a career in the reinsurance business. He started in the accounting and claims department of Guy Carpenter and for the past nine years he has been a reinsurance broker at AON. Doug and his wife Sue (Dailey) ’05, live in Minnetonka, Minn. with their two children, Lovell and Elaine.