MSU Denver alumni jump into the Olympic spotlight
It’s a long way from MSU Denver’s athletic facilities to the venues at the 2012 Summer Olympics in London, but alumni Todd Schmitz, Mark Worthington and David Barlow have completed the journey. When the games begin on July 27, these MSU Denver alumni will play integral roles in their country’s efforts to win gold. So tune in and cheer on your favorite Roadrunner.
MSU Denver in the pool
After four years on the MSU swim team, Schmitz (’01) went on to become head coach and CEO of the Colorado Stars swimming club. One of the swimmers he coaches is none other than U.S. Olympic Team member Missy Franklin, who’s thought to be one the United States’ best medal contenders in 2012.
Schmitz will be poolside for Franklin’s Olympic events, which include the 100m freestyle, 200m freestyle, 100m backstroke, 200m backstroke, 4x100m freestyle relay, 4x200m freestyle relay and the 4x100m medley relay.
Olympic swimming events begin July 28.
MSU Denver on the court
Worthington and Barlow are globetrotting basketball players representing Australia in their second Olympic Games. Both played many quality minutes for the MSU Denver Roadrunners — a Division II collegiate basketball powerhouse.
At MSU Denver, Worthington (’05) won a national championship in 2002 and was named Division II national player of the year in 2005. He went on to play professional basketball in Australia and led his country to gold in the 2006 Commonwealth Games.
Barlow (’02) played one season at MSU Denver from 2002-03. That launched his professional career in Australia, where he’s won two league championships. He now plays professionally for a team in Spain but represents Australia at the London Olympics.
Australia begins Olympic play on July 29 against Brazil.
MSU Denver in the world
“These three former student-athletes are not only representing their countries in the Olympics, they’re representing Metro State,” says Joan McDermott, MSU Denver’s director of athletics. “Their accomplishments show that student-athletes at our university can compete at the highest levels of international sports.”
Photo: Roadrunners alumnus Mark Worthington of the Gold Coast Blaze dunks the ball during a pre-game warm-up on Feb. 19, 2012, in Brisbane, Australia. Worthington is representing Australia in the 2012 Olympic Games in London. Photo by Matt Roberts/Getty Images.