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ASU mourns passing of Don Robinson


July 05, 2011

Former men's gymnastics coach led Sun Devils to NCAA title in 1986

Arizona State University mourns the loss of former men's gymnastics coach Don Robinson, who passed away on Monday at the age of 80.

Robinson, who was inducted into the ASU Hall of Distinction in 1993, led the ASU men's gymnastics program for 25 years (1969-93), guiding it to 13 top 10 national finishes and six conference titles. ASU had a pair of national runner-up finishes (1974, '78) before breaking through and winning the NCAA Championship in 1986. That same year Robinson earned national coach of the year honors.

Under Robinson's tutelage 24 different Sun Devil student-athletes earned a combined 43 All-America awards.

In 2000 Robinson was the first recipient of the USA Gymnastics Lifetime Achievement Award.

Robinson's own gymnastics career began during his prep days at North Denver High School before his collegiate career at the University of Northern Colorado (previously known as Colorado State College). He earned four letters in college and was the team's top all-around performer. He earned his bachelor's degree from CSC in art education in 1958 and his master's degree from Eastern New Mexico University in 1968.

Prior to coaching ASU, Robinson served as head coach at Eastern New Mexico for one season.