The last of our early Olympians is Rudolph (Rudy) Scholz, the first of our University-connected competitors to win gold in two Olympic games.
Rudolph Scholz attended Columbia Preparatory School for one year, 1911-1912, moving to California to complete his studies. He made his mark here in basketball and baseball. Small in size but quick to react on the court and field. As a forward on the basketball team, “Rudy was the best scrapper on the team. What he lacked in inches he made up in cleverness. Very fast and good on tossing baskets.” (Columbiad, April 1912) As short stop for the baseball team, he was a “fielding star.” (Columbiad, May 1912).
Rudy must have hit a growth spurt before attending Stanford University where he joined the school’s rugby squad, beginning of a lifetime career in rugby. In 1920, at the age of 24, he competed with the United States rugby team to win a gold medal at the Summer Olympic games in Antwerp, Belgium. He returned with the team for the 1924 Summer Olympics in Paris, France to win his second gold.
Rugby was part of the Olympics in 1900, 1908, 1920 and 1924 and then it disappeared from the Olympic scene. It is one of two sports returning to the Olympics in the 2016 games.