|Dedicated to the Preservation of Athletic History at Colorado State University
|Earle Bruce, Mike Lude and Tuffy Mullison return to Hughes
Stadium along with the 1990 Freedom Bowl Champions
|OCTOBER 30, 2010 - HUGHES STADIUM- The last time many CSU football fans
saw former head coach Earle Bruce, he was fuming over his firing by Dr. Albert Yates
and Corey Johnson. Today, he was welcomed back with open arms as the Colorado
State football program celebrated the 20th anniversary of the first football team to win
a bowl game. Fans and former players were not only treated to seeing the man who
laid the groundwork for the success of the 1990s, but dozens of alumni football
players also came to the tailgate party on a beautiful Saturday afternoon.
Also in attendance were two other former head coaches from CSU, both WWII
veterans and both excited to see their former players and catch up on old times. Don
"Tuffy" Mullison served as both a former player and former head coach at the party.
Mullison who played for Hans Wagner in 1942, broke for the war in the Pacific, then
returned to Colorado A&M in 1946 and was on the team when Wagner was asked to
resign and Harry Hughes took over. He went on to play for Bob Davis' Raisin Bowl
team as well. Mullison has a 100 year link to CSU football history, playing for Hughes,
Wagner and Bob Davis before being named the head football coach and serving from
The last former head coach to attend the Legends Tailgate party was 88-year-old
Mike Lude. Lude, a Marine in WWII who coached from 1962-1969 lives in Arizona
today and was excited to talk to old players and team historian, John Hirn, about the
1966 Bounce Pass, the construction of Hughes Stadium and more.
|ABOVE - Mike Lude speaks with CSU football historian John Hirn about his coaching days
from 1962 to 1969. Lude was known as "Mr. Enthusiasm" while he coached the Rams and
at 88 years old, he has showed no signs of slowing down his energetic life. He shared stories
and also caught up with many of his former players, including his greatest player, Oscar
Reed. Other photos of Lude, ABOVE LEFT- After beating Wyoming in 1966, LEFT-
Talking to players in the 1966 Airforce game.
|ABOVE- Earle Bruce in 1990 guided the
Rams to their first bowl victory in school
history. BELOW- Earle Bruce returned to
Hughes Stadium for the 20th anniversary
of the Freedom Bowl.
|LEFT - Earle Bruce coaching in the Freedom Bowl. RIGHT- Earle Bruce speaks with
Freedom Bowl player Dolf Renaud at the 2010 Ram Legends tailgate.
|Hall of Fame Grows and Former Players enjoy the day-
The Rams welcomed many former players other than the 1990 Freedom Bowl Champions,
but they were the largest team in attendance. Men like Mike Giminez, Eric Tippiconnic, John
Laurita, Scott Doerr, Harlan Carol, Selwyn Jones and Freedom Bowl MVP Todd Yert all
made the trip along with many more. However, others like Alan Ashbaugh from the 1950s,
Oscar Reed from the 1960s, Wade Troxell from the 1970s, Todd Eakes from the 1980s
and even recent players like former kicker Jason Smith from Steve Fairchild's first team
were in attendance.
Oscar Reed, still considered one of the greatest players in school history made the rtrip from
his home in Minnesota, where he had a great career with the Vikings in the early 1970s.
Reed showed some of that amazing respect a player still has for his coach when looking at
pictures in Aggies to Rams. He called to his former head coach, Mike Lude and said,
"Coach, here is a picture of you and me together." After more than 40 years and a great
career in the NFL, players still have the respect in their former coach to call them "coach."
The day was not just set aside for three legendary coaches to catch up with their old players,
a 20-year reunion and gathering of other former players. The 2010 Class of CSU Hall of
Famers were also introduced at halftime. One of them, Dan Beattie, inducted posthumously
was the only new hall of famer who had played football. Beattie played for Harry Hughes in
the late 1920s, his talents as a track athlete made him an All-American in that sport.
Many former players enjoyed the day and some of the Freedom Bowl vets were even able
to look at the trophy they brought home, displayed near the Hughes Room for all fans to see.
|Oscar Reed - 1966.
|LEFT - The 2010 Class of CSU Hall of Famers introduced at halftime of the win over New Mexico on October 30, 2010 RIGHT-
Oscar Reed looks at Aggies to Rams with authour John Hirn and former teammate John Allen looking on.