Sports in Colorado

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Sports in Colorado include professional teams, college sports, and individual sports.

The Colorado Rockies National League baseball club at Coors Field in Denver.

Professional sports teams[edit]

Colorado is the least populous state with a franchise in each of the major professional sports leagues. The state is able to support the teams because it contains a large metropolitan area with a higher population than any other city within 550 miles (885 km). Therefore, many of the residents in the surrounding states support the teams in Denver, as shown by the reach of the Broncos' radio network.[1]

Club Home First game Sport League
Denver Broncos Denver September 9, 1960 Football National Football League
Denver Barbarians Denver Spring 1967 Rugby union Rugby Super League
Denver Nuggets Denver September 27, 1967 Basketball National Basketball Association
Colorado Rockies Denver April 5, 1993 Baseball Major League Baseball
Colorado Avalanche Denver October 6, 1995 Ice hockey National Hockey League
Colorado Rapids Commerce City April 13, 1996 Soccer Major League Soccer
Colorado Rumble FC Denver December 2018 Arena Soccer
Denver Bulldogs Denver Summer 1998 Australian rules football USAFL
Colorado Mammoth Denver January 3, 2003 Lacrosse National Lacrosse League
Colorado Eagles Loveland October 17, 2003 Ice hockey American Hockey League
Rocky Mountain Rollergirls Denver July 2005 Roller derby Women's Flat Track Derby Association
Denver Outlaws Denver May 20, 2006 Lacrosse Major League Lacrosse
Colorado Raptors Glendale Fall 2006 Rugby union Major League Rugby
Boulder County Bombers Boulder November 2011 Roller derby Women's Flat Track Derby Association
Grand Junction Rockies Grand Junction June 18, 2012 Baseball Pioneer League (Rookie, Minor League Baseball)
Colorado Springs Switchbacks FC Colorado Springs March 28, 2015 Soccer United Soccer League
Rocky Mountain Vibes Colorado Springs June 2019 Baseball Pioneer League (Rookie, Minor League Baseball)

Former professional sports teams[edit]

Club Sport League
Aurora Cavalry Basketball International Basketball League
Colorado 14ers (won championship in their final season of 2008–09; moved to Frisco, Texas, went on hiatus in 2009–10, and resumed play in 2010–11 as the Texas Legends) Basketball NBA Development League[a]
Colorado Chill (folded along with the NWBL) Basketball National Women's Basketball League
Colorado Crossover Basketball International Basketball League
Colorado Crush (suspended operations with the AFL in 2009, and did not return after league's hiatus ended) Arena football Arena Football League
Colorado Rapids U23's Soccer USL Premier Development League
Colorado Rockies (NHL) (moved to East Rutherford, New Jersey and became the New Jersey Devils) Ice Hockey National Hockey League
Colorado Xplosion (won the Western Conference Championship in inaugural season) Women's Basketball American Basketball League (1996–1998)
Colorado Springs Blizzard Soccer USL Premier Development League
Colorado Springs Sky Sox[b] Baseball Pacific Coast League (Triple-A, Minor League Baseball)
Denver Grizzlies (moved to Salt Lake City, Utah, later moved to Cleveland, Ohio and became the Lake Erie/Cleveland Monsters) Ice Hockey International Hockey League (1945–2001)
Denver Spurs (moved to Ottawa, Ontario and became the Ottawa Civics for the rest of the team's existence) Ice Hockey World Hockey Association/Central Hockey League/Western Hockey League
Denver Dynamite (Inaugural AFL member; folded after four seasons) Arena football Arena Football League
Denver Gold (United States Football League member, 1983–1985) Football United States Football League
Denver Bears/Denver Zephyrs (moved to New Orleans and became the New Orleans Zephyrs; now playing as the New Orleans Baby Cakes in the New Orleans suburb of Metairie, Louisiana) Baseball American Association/Pacific Coast League
Denver Racquets 1974 Champions (moved to Phoenix 1975) Tennis World Team Tennis
Denver Stampede Rugby union PRO Rugby
Rocky Mountain Rage Ice hockey Central Hockey League
  1. ^ Now known as the NBA G League.
  2. ^ The Sky Sox will move from Colorado Springs to San Antonio after the 2018 season, where they will take up the identity of the San Antonio Missions.

College athletics[edit]

Colorado is home to five NCAA Division I schools, plus a number of additional schools competing at lower levels. One school that competes at the lowest NCAA level, Division III, operates two Division I teams.

Team School City Conference
Air Force Falcons United States Air Force Academy Colorado Springs Mountain West[a 1]
Colorado Buffaloes University of Colorado Boulder Boulder Pac-12
Colorado College Tigers[a 2] Colorado College Colorado Springs NCHC (men's ice hockey)
Mountain West (women's soccer)
Colorado State Rams Colorado State University Fort Collins Mountain West
Denver Pioneers University of Denver Denver Summit[a 3]
Northern Colorado Bears University of Northern Colorado Greeley Big Sky[a 4]
  1. ^ The Air Force men's ice hockey team plays in Atlantic Hockey. The men's lacrosse team plays in the Southern Conference. The wrestling team competes in the Big 12 Conference.
  2. ^ Colorado College is a member of the Division III Southern Collegiate Athletic Conference in most sports, but fields Division I teams in men's ice hockey and women's soccer. It is one of only five Division III schools allowed to award athletic scholarships in its Division I sports.
  3. ^ Four high-profile DU teams compete as members of other conferences in sports that are not sponsored by the Summit League. The men's ice hockey team plays in the National Collegiate Hockey Conference, the men's and women's lacrosse teams play in the Big East Conference, and the women's gymnastics team competes in the Big 12 Conference.
  4. ^ The wrestling team competes in the Big 12 Conference.

Other sports[edit]

The Unser family includes Al Unser, Al Unser Jr., Bobby Unser, Robby Unser and Louis Unser, and have won the Indianapolis 500 among other motorsports events.

The Pikes Peak International Hill Climb is a major motorsports event held at the Pikes Peak roads. Notable drivers include Mario Andretti, Michèle Mouton, Walter Röhrl, Ari Vatanen, Nobuhiro Tajima, Stig Blomqvist, Sébastien Loeb and Romain Dumas in addition to the Unsers.

Meanwhile, the Pikes Peak International Raceway has hosted motorsport events including IndyCar Series, NASCAR Busch Series, NASCAR Truck Series, AMA Superbike Championship and USAC Silver Crown Series.

The Cherry Hills Country Club has hosted professional golf tournaments such as the U.S. Open, U.S. Senior Open, U.S. Women's Open and PGA Championship.

See also[edit]


  1. ^ "– Official Website Of The Denver Broncos". Retrieved 2010-07-30.

External links[edit]