Russell “Rut” Volk stands out as a legendary figure in the Colorado School of Mines athletic annals for his all-around skills. Competing in virtually every form of sport, he set a record by earning fourteen letters, a record that still stands at the school.
As a center on the Mines football team, Volk was a regular in 1923-24-25; made all conference his last two seasons and captained the team as a senior.
After the football season, he found time to compete in both wrestling and boxing, and in 1925, somehow found time to letter in basketball.
When spring arrived, Volk was found on the baseball diamond and in 1925-26, was second team all-conference.
In four years of competition, he never lost a dual meet match in wrestling as a heavyweight or in boxing as a light-heavy. He was conference boxing champion in 1924-25, after the most famous title bout in regional history the previous year against Erv Hinds, who was inducted posthumously into the Colorado Sports Hall of Fame. Volk was himself inducted in 1977.
After serving as an instructor at Mines while earning his Master’s Degree in petroleum engineering, he and other faculty members formed the Plains Exploration Company, which sought oil in Eastern Colorado.
The Russell H. Volk gymnasium was dedicated at the School of Mines in 1974. Volk is now deceased.
As a center on the Mines football team, Volk was a regular.