Just two wild and crazy nights in Kalamazoo for the Pioneers

Photo courtesy DU Hockey

It was an…interesting weekend for the top-ranked University of Denver Pioneers when they traveled to Kalamazoo, Michigan to take on the #14 Western Michigan Broncos. There was some good, some bad, and a very disappointing bit of news. However, overall, earning a split with a vastly improved WMU team on their ice is a good result for DU as the stretch run draws ever closer. Continue reading Just two wild and crazy nights in Kalamazoo for the Pioneers

Red Hot Pioneers Burn Bison, 79-55

Final score 79-55 – and it wasn’t even that close.

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Denver put together their best all-around game of the Rodney Billups era.

Pioneer fans were treated to a basketball clinic as Denver (11-7, 3-2) ran roughshod over one of the top teams in the Summit League, North Dakota State (12-6, 4-1) . Sure it was a home game but the the Denver squad gave fans a glimpse of what Rodney Billups “play fast” basketball looks like – on both ends of the floor. The Pioneers, led by a dominant Daniel Amigo’s 28 points and 12 rebounds, thrashed North Dakota State University on the offensive end and shut down their penetrating offensive drives on the defensive end.  Continue reading Red Hot Pioneers Burn Bison, 79-55

Dunk and Hamilton are latest (rare) members of DU first round draft club

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For the first time in Denver Pioneer soccer history, an MLS team selected a graduating  Denver soccer senior in the first round of the MLS SuperDraft, not once, but twice. Right back Reagan Dunk, a two-time all-American and the most decorated player in Denver history, was selected 13th overall by Real Salt Lake, and two picks later at #15, Denver midfielder Sam Hamilton, an native of Evergreen, Colo., was selected by the hometown Colorado Rapids.

These draft picks mark a high water mark in player development for the Denver soccer program. The Pioneers had six players selected in previous MLS drafts, but none of them were first round selections.  A first round pick is validation that players produced at DU were not only good enough to be selected in the top 15 of all college seniors this year, but also shows prospective recruits that Denver is a now a truly elite place to develop as a player. This should really help DU in recruiting top players with professional aspirations.

First round draft picks from the five major professional sports at DU are quite rare. Dunk and Hamilton are the latest members in a very elite club of only six DU athletes in all of major American professional sports to be first round draft selections.

DU Hockey has 112 players drafted by the NHL over the years, but has had only four first round NHL draft picks in its 65+ year history. Craig Redmond was first at #6 in 1984, Joe Colborne next at #16 in 2008, Beau Bennett was selected at #20 in 2010 and current Pioneer Henrik Borgström, was selected 23rd in the 2016 NHL Draft.

DU has never had a first round pick in the NBA draft, although some 15 DU players have been selected over the years, the highest of whom was Byron Beck, a second round draft pick in the 1967 draft who had his number retired after a long and productive career with the Denver Nuggets in the ABA and NBA.

DU has also never had a first rounder in the NFL Draft, either, although seven Pioneers were drafted by NFL teams prior to DU dropping the sport in 1961. The highest DU football draft pick was Greg Browning, who was selected by the Pittsburgh Steelers in the 6th round of the 1945 NFL draft.

Pioneer baseball, which ceased at the varsity level in 1998, also has 16 overall players drafted by Major League Baseball teams back in the day, but no first round selections. The highest regular-drafted player in DU history was Dan Schatzeder, a third round pick in 1976, who went on to a 15-year Major League pitching career, whose career highlight was being the winning pitcher in Game 6 of the 1987 World Series with the Minnesota Twins.

Welcome to the club, Reagan and Sam.

Go Pios.

Pioneers back up to speed thanks to Emil Romig’s return

Photo courtesy of  Shannon Valerio

Seven weeks removed from sustaining a brutal lower body injury at North Dakota on November 11, Emil Romig returned to Magness Arena in style. The senior forward and Pio spark plug recorded his first goal of the 2016 campaign and an assist for the University of Denver Pioneers against Arizona State on Friday, Jan. 6. Continue reading Pioneers back up to speed thanks to Emil Romig’s return

The Pioneers Need More Daniel Amigo

Photo: Daniel Amigo has been one of DU’s surprise stars this season

Fans have had 15 games to see the season unfold for DU Men’s Hoops. No doubt, the biggest surprise has been Daniel Amigo, on both the offensive and defensive end. He is the Pios’ second leading scorer with 14.4 points per game and leads the team with 7.6 rebounds per game. He’s accomplishing this in only 24 minutes per game on the floor. In short, he’s one of the most efficient players in the Summit League. Amigo is ranked 48th in the country in field goal percentage (55.2%). He scores more points per minute (offensive efficiency) than Fort Wayne star John Konchar (.6 vs .45 points per minute). Konchar is shooting an astounding 70.5% from the field and is 4th in the nation in field goal percentage. But. there is a problem.

Simply put, Denver needs more than 24 minutes per game from Daniel Amigo. Continue reading The Pioneers Need More Daniel Amigo

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