Thanks to Fergus Falls High School graduate, area historian and reported Tom Hintgen for sharing this article with us.
Long-time Fergus Falls sports fans remember Chuck Weiss, who died at 79 in San Jose, California, as one of the all-time great athletes at Fergus Falls High School.
As a senior running back in football, Weiss led the Otters to a 8-0 record in the fall of 1956. As a power forward in basketball, he and the Otters finished 27-1 and took third place in the 1957 state basketball tournament.
Weiss, who died just short of his 80th birthday in mid-March, played for coach Norm Galloway in football and coach Duane Baglien for Otter basketball.
“Chuck was one of the most outstanding athletes in Fergus history, maybe the most outstanding,” said classmate Dayton Soby. “He was named all-state in both football and basketball in the one-class days, and also excelled in baseball and track.”
Fergus Falls retiree Jack Mouritsen, a former Otter lineman on both offense and defense, played with Weiss on football unbeaten teams in 1955 and again in 1956.
“Chuck really loved the game of football,” Mouritsen said. “He not only was a great running back. Chuck also excelled as a middle linebacker on defense.”
Mouritsen said that Weiss was a true leader, urging each of his teammates to work hard and perform to the best of their abilities on the football field.
The talents of Chuck Weiss did not go unnoticed.
He was recruited in football by the University of Colorado at Boulder, later excelling as a fullback. In 1960, his senior year in college, Weiss was a 6-foot, 2-inch and 204-pound running back, gaining widespread recognition.
His talents were best described in the 1960 University of Colorado football program.
“Weiss is the best fullback in the Big Eight Conference. He is an outstanding plunger, fine blocker and complete football player.”
In his senior year in college, Weiss outgained every opposing fullback.
He was especially brilliant in Iowa State and Oklahoma victories as he scored the winning touchdowns for Colorado in tremendous second efforts, twisting to the side and lunging over the goal line after apparently being stacked up at the one-yard line.
Weiss was a starter on the University of Colorado football team for three years, from 1958 to 1960, and was team leader in rushing his senior year.
He was drafted by the Denver Broncos and later tried out with the Dallas Cowboys. As a pro, Weiss had the potential to become an outside linebacker. Unfortunately, he re-injured a knee, ending his chances in the professional football ranks.
Weiss was a charter member of the 1986 Fergus Falls Chamber of Commerce Sports Hall of Fame. He was inducted into the Fergus Falls High School Hall of Fame in 2007.
In California his business interests included automotive technology, irrigation systems, and biochemical strategies. Weiss was founder and chairman of the board for WTR Technologies based in San Jose.
Photo provided Fergus Falls native Chuck Weiss, a star Otter football player, later became an outstanding running back at the University of Colorado from 1958 to 1960.