CHUCK “BOBO” BRAYTON — Coach (Baseball)
When Bobo Brayton retired from Washington State University at the conclusion of the 1994 season, he ranked as the fourth winningest baseball coach in NCAA D-I history, as well as the winningest Cougar coach of all-time. However, his final record of 1,162 wins, 523 losses and eight ties only tells part of the story.
During his 33 years at the helm, Brayton was not only a winning coach, but an innovative leader in NCAA baseball. He has received the NCAA’s Distinguished Serve Awards on behalf of the College World Series and the NCAA Rules Committee and the Lefty Gomez Award for service and contributions to collegiate baseball.
Bobo was named Pacific-10 Conference Northern Division coach of the year five times and his teams won 21 conference titles in his 33 years. Brayton, WSU’s first baseball All-America recipient, was inducted into the WSU Athletic Hall of Fame in 1981 and Bailey-Brayton Field, home of WSU Cougar baseball, is named in his honor.
Photo courtesy of The Lewiston Tribune.
DON CORYELL — Coach (Football)
Born in Seattle on Oct. 17, 1924, Don Coryell was a defensive back at the University of Washington from 1949-51 before turning to coaching. In 29 years, Coryell amassed a college coaching record of 126-24-3 in 15 seasons from 1957-72 and was 114-89-1 in 14 NFL seasons. In fact, Don is the only coach to have more than 100 wins at both the collegiate and professional levels and is a member of the College Football Hall of Fame.
At San Diego State, Coryell had three undefeated seasons with the Aztecs and changed his emphasis from the running game to a passing game before moving on to coach the St. Louis Cardinals and San Diego Chargers of the NFL. He was respected throughout football as an innovator and the creator of the “vertical offense” that stretched defenses.
During Don’s nine seasons as head coach of the Chargers, the team became known as “Air Coryell”, and with his innovative offensive attack, he became known for revolutionizing the passing game in the National Football League. “Don is the father of the modern passing game,” said Joe Gibbs, who assisted Coryell before becoming a Hall of Fame coach with the Washington Redskins.
Coryell won AFC Coach of Year honors from the Professional Football Writers of America in 1979. He was inducted into the Chargers Hall of Fame in 1994.
BRUCE KING — Media
Bruce King spent 30 years as Sports Director/Anchor at KOMO-TV where he hosted the University of Washington weekly football and basketball shows and did the radio and television play-by-play of Husky football and basketball games.
Bruce also hosted a weekly Monday Night Seahawk Coach’s Show on television, and covered the Sonics
(including their 1978-79 NBA Championship Season), the Mariners, the Sounders, Seattle University and Seattle Pacific University on a daily basis. In addition, he also hosted and presented the KOMO Prep Athlete of the Month Award.
King received numerous accolades during his career including being a four-time Sportscaster of the Year winner in the state of Washington. With his trademark smile, Bruce has continued to volunteer his time as a guest speaker, emcee, celebrity judge, host &/or participant in community and charity events.
JOHN OLERUD — Baseball
John Olerud enjoyed a 17-season career in the major leagues spending eight years with the Toronto Blue Jays and another five with the Seattle Mariners. Olerud was a two-time All-Star and a member of two World Series championship teams with the Blue Jays in 1992 and 1993. He also won the American League batting title in 1993 with a .363 average.
A graduate of Bellevue’s Interlake High School, Olerud jumped directly to the majors after a stellar career at Washington State University where he pitched from 1987 to 1989. He was known for wearing a batting helmet in the field as a precaution since he had suffered a brain aneurysm while playing in college. In 2007 he was inducted into the College Baseball Hall Of Fame
Olerud joined the Mariners in 2000 and was an important part of the Mariners’ 116-46 2001 season. John also earned all three of his career Gold Gloves while playing first base for Seattle in 2000, 2002 and 2003.