UCCS athletic director to enter hall of honor

Stephen Kirkham


University of Colorado Colorado Springs Athletic Director Stephen Kirkham will be inducted into the Hall of Honor at Colorado Mesa University (formerly Mesa State College) in a ceremony in Grand Junction on Sept. 30.

Also being inducted during the ceremony, which will be held at Colorado Mesa’s University Center Ballroom, will be the Mavericks’ 1982 football team. Kirkham coached the school’s women’s basketball teams from 1988-2004, amassing a 299-157 record. He retired as the most-winning women’s basketball coach in Mesa State College and Rocky Mountain Athletic Conference (RMAC) history. Including stints at the high school and junior college levels, as well as one season as the interim coach at UCCS, Kirkham’s career record is 438-254.

“It is an amazing honor for a first-generation college graduate who never intended to coach women’s basketball,” Kirkham said. “I immediately think of all the great ladies who played at Colorado Mesa University during my 16 years there and their dedication, effort and ability.

“I smile a lot thinking also of their personalities and the experiences we shared. It was a terrific journey.”

Kirkham led the Mavericks to four RMAC Championships, seven consecutive RMAC West Division Championships and one RMAC Tournament title. Under his guidance, the team recorded 15 winning seasons, advancing to 10 consecutive RMAC Shootout Tournaments. During Kirkham’s tenure, his teams set a league record for 10 consecutive winning seasons and were the first RMAC team to host an NCAA Regional Tournament (2002). MSC led the nation in field goal percentage defense (33 percent) in 2000 and Rebound Margin (+13.5) in 1999. His teams still hold 28 Mesa State school records.

Kirkham coached 46 RMAC All-Conference players, three All-Americans, one Region Player of the Year and two NAIA District Player of the Year. He coached RMAC and Mesa State Hall of Fame honoree, Tonya Stites.

In his 16 years at the helm he had a 100 percent senior graduation rate and numerous National Academic Top 25 teams. Kirkham was instrumental in increasing female participation in Mesa State Basketball Camps from 800 to more than 2,000.

Tickets for the event will go on sale Sept. 1 and can be purchased at or by calling the alumni office at 970-248-1871.