Football (1951 to 1953) Track and Field (1951 to 1954)
Alex Burl graduated from Denver's Manuel High School in 1950 and came to Colorado A&M in the fall of that same year to begin a legendary athletic career for the Rams. Burl had excellent sprinter speed and as a safety on defense and halfback on offense, helped tear up the gridiron at Colorado Field from 1951 to 1953. However, it was Burl's ability in track and field that made him a legend at CSU. In 1952 he won the All-American Award in the 100 meters becoming the first African American in school history to be honored as an All-American. He qualified for the 1952 Olympic trials and narrowly missed making the 1952 US Olympic team. He also won All-American in the 100 meters in 1954 and was named as the school's first African American Nye Award winner in his senior year.
Following graduation, Burl was signed by the Chicago Cardinals but had to spend two years with the US Army before he could play in the NFL. After two years with the Cardinals, Burl turned to a career in education and became a Denver legend as coach at Manuel and West High Schools. He coached track, football and cross country for nearly 30 years retiring as one of Colorado's most successful high school coaches. Alex Burl died in December of 2009 at the age of 78.