Pack Athletics release statement on the death of wrestling coach Mike Roumph
Colorado State University Pueblo Athletics, the University and the community of Pueblo lost Mike Roumph Friday. He was an alumnus of the University, an assistant wrestling coach for the ThunderWolves and a major donor for Pack Athletics, but more importantly, he was a friend to all he came into contact with.
Mike, 53, passed away June 5 in a tragic rafting accident on the Arkansas River.
"Coach Mike was my best friend, the best assistant coach and the best man that I've ever known," said CSU Pueblo Head Wrestling Coach Dax Charles. "Mike was instrumental in helping restart our wrestling program in 2007 and in recruiting for the past 12 years. He was a father figure to everyone in our program. Mike's character and work ethic is what we built our program around. He will be remembered by the Pack Wrestling Family as an excellent example of what we inspire to become through hard work and determination."
Mike played a major part in the redevelopment of CSU Pueblo Athletics by serving as Vice President of Friends of Football. FOF raised more than $13 million to bring football back to campus in 2008 and in just seven seasons, the ThunderWolves were crowned NCAA Division II National Champions. Football wasn't the only program that benefited, as the return of wrestling and women's track and field also occurred in 2008.
Mike found a new passion for wrestling and was a volunteer assistant coach for 12 seasons where he helped coach the upper weight classes. During his time as a coach he mentored a national champion and eight All-Americans. He also was a major donor and led a fundraising program for Pack Wrestling. During his time as a coach, the ThunderWolves produced 13 All-Americans and at least three national qualifiers in each season since 2013 with four on three occasions (2013, 2017, 2019). The ThunderWolves were crowned Rocky Mountain Athletic Conference Champions in 2017, and in 2018, totaled four RMAC Champions and finished 11th at the NCAA National Championships, the highest finish since the return of the program in 2008.
"Mike became a highly skilled wrestler and coach after picking up the sport in his 40s," Charles said. "He was well liked by everyone in the wrestling community at every level."
Michael Wayne Roumph was born April 5, 1967 in Columbus, Nebraska to Lowell and Judy Roumph. A hardworking and dedicated student, Mike developed a love for the game of basketball early in his life. After winning a state championship at Sterling High School, he played at Northeastern Junior College, where his father coached him, before moving to Pueblo to finish his college career at University of Southern Colorado (now CSU Pueblo). He was a team leader in assists and was selected to several all-academic teams. In two seasons from 1988-90 he totaled 214 assists in 54 games. His 4.0 assists per game average ranked fifth in men's basketball history when he left the program and still sits in the top 15 all-time.
Upon earning his bachelor's degree in business administration in 1990 from USC, he embarked on a successful career in business. Mike never created a resume as he always "did his own thing." He started the Corporate Sponsorship Program at District 60 to save middle school athletics, served as Vice President of DD Marketing from inception and co-founded and served as President of the largest pediatric dental company in the country.
"We were business partners and worked side-by-side for 26 yeas and I can't remember one argument we had," said Dan DeRose, the President of DD Marketing and Friends of Football. "That's the kind of man he was."
In recent years Mike had active roles in various other businesses and served on the board for the Robert H Rawlings Foundation. He didn't just support the wrestling program at CSU Pueblo, but was also a member of the Board of Directors, a group where the members pledge $10,000 per year and serve on the top-level advisory community board for Pack Athletics.
"Our entire Department stands in utter shock and sadness over the sudden and untimely passing of Mike," said CSU Pueblo Director of Intercollegiate Athletics Dr. Paul Plinske. "He lived life to the fullest and gave us all so much. This loss impacts more than wrestling. Mike was a supporter of all things Pack Athletics. He was a special person who touched many lives and will be greatly missed."
Mike loved God, his children, Pueblo, all athletics, physical fitness and pushing the boundaries when it came to personal challenges.
"Mike was a strong man of faith and loved his family," Charles said. "Family was always first with Mike."
Mike is survived by his children, Connor Roumph of Pueblo, Max Roumph of Pueblo, Chayse Roumph of Pueblo, stepson Josh Moser of Pueblo, brother Eric Roumph (Aimee) of Denver, Colo., sister Diane Roumph of Denver and his mother, Judy Roumph, of Sterling, Colo. He is also survived by his granddaughter Remi Moser, nephews Alec, Sam and Austin and nieces Olivia and Tessa.
Mike is preceded in death by his father, Lowell, and brother, Steven.
The family will hold private services and a Life Celebration will be held later in the month.
In lieu of flowers and gifts, contributions may be made to:
Friends of Football
CSUP Wrestling Fund
504 Grand Ave
Pueblo, CO 81003