hentzen bob
Bob Hentzen

  • Kansas sports writer for over 40 years
  • Produced more than 8,500 columns for two Topeka papers
  • Fifteen-time Kansas Sports Writer of the Year
Hentzen, Bob
Inducted 2005

Born: September 2, 1932 - Seward, NE

Died: March 17, 2000 – Topeka, Kansas

Graduated: Central High School (Oklahoma City, OK), 1950; University of Oklahoma, 1954


The first sports writer to be inducted into the Kansas Sports Hall of Fame, Bob Hentzen was one of the most respected newspaper scribes of his time as his chronicled the highlights and heartbreaks of the Kansas sporting scene for nearly 40 years.

Early Career

Hentzen graduated from the University of Oklahoma and worked in the Sooners’ media relations office before newspaper stints with the Tulsa World, Daily Oklahoman and Oklahoma City Times.  He came to Topeka in January, 1958, and became the sports editor and lead columnist of the Topeka Capital-Journal until he retired on March 1, 1996.

Career Highlights

Hentzen produced more than 8,500 columns for The Topeka Daily Capital and Topeka State Journal, ranging from the Super Bowl to the World Series to his beloved Washburn Ichabods.   He continued to write one column a week until his death in 2000.


Hentzen was honored as the Kansas Sports Writer of the Year 15 times.   He was inducted into the United States Basketball Writers Association Hall of Fame in 1990, received the prestigious Bert McGrane Award from the Football Writers Association in 1993 and was honored with the Curt Gowdy Media Award by the Basketball Hall of Fame in 1996.