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Woody Paige

Inducted 2024

Impact. An attribute that not many in the journalism profession possess.

But in the case of Woodrow Wilson “Woody” Paige, Jr., he has had an indelible one on the Denver media scene since arriving in the Centennial State as a 27-year-old in 1974 as a sportswriter and columnist for the Rocky Mountain News.

Love or hate his opinions, he has long maintained a large following, not only in Colorado, but nationally. In 1981, he left the News and popped over a few blocks and joined The Denver Post, where he would remain until 2016. At The Post, he was recognized four times as Colorado’s Sportswriter of the Year and was named on two Pulitzer Prize winning teams. In the years since, he has written for the Colorado Springs Gazette and its sister on-line publication, the Denver Gazette.

A graduate of the University of Tennessee, where he wrote a column for the campus newspaper for four years, he has been a professional journalist for 61 years, starting with the Whitehaven Press, The Knoxville Journal and The Memphis Commercial Appeal before relocating to Colorado.

He has covered most, if not all of the significant sports stories in the state’s history, including all seven Broncos’ Super Bowl runs, the Nuggets’ first NBA championship as well as its only ABA title series, CU’s 1990 national championship season, and all three Avalanche Stanley Cup crowns.

Over the last 49 years, he has been the only columnist to write for all three of the state’s largest newspapers. And “on the side”, he’s also written for over a dozen magazines.

Locally he was one of the first in the market to co-host a daily sports show on radio, and would eventually host shows on a dozen stations. On local TV, he made regular appearance on all five Denver stations (2,3,7,9 and 31). He has his own website,, and also hosts and guests on several podcasts.

Woody branched out into national television in 2002, where he is approaching 3,000 appearances as a panelist in his 22nd year on ESPN’s “Around the Horn” (and nearing 700 wins). His signature phrase of the day is always behind him on a chalkboard. In all, he’s appeared on five ESPN or Disney network programs. He played himself in the movies “Rocky Balboa” and “Nebraska” and on the TV show “Playmakers.”

In his career, he has covered Super Bowls (over 40), Olympic games (14) and every major professional and college championships multiple times – World Series, NBA Finals, Stanley Cup Finals, The Masters (32 times), the U.S. Open in golf and tennis (22 between them), Wimbledon, the Indianapolis 500, the Daytona 500, the Kentucky Derby and two World Cups. He has written over 10,000 stories and/or columns and has also authored 10 books.

His numerous honors include the University of Tennessee Distinguished Alumni Award and the national Lamba Chi Alpha Fraternity order of Achievement, in addition to more than 100 state and national awards as a columnist. And now, Woody Paige can add member of the Colorado Sports Hall of Fame to that list.

By David Plati, University of Colorado Historian.

Woody Paige wearing a suit and tie smiling at the camera