A family of standouts in the field
- Cliff Pfenning
- Portland Tribune - Sports
The Colvilles leave their mark in many ways on Lincoln High's turf
If there were a Hall of Fame for family achievement at a high school, the Colville family of Lincoln High would certainly be worthy of induction.
Tyler Colville, a recent graduate, was a standout in football, skiing and baseball. Marshall Colville, Class of 2000, was an all-league football player and recently returned from a tour of duty in Iraq as part of a U.S. Marine unit.
Their father, Mark, an orthopedic surgeon, is the football team doctor and often has served as a trainer. Their mother, Amy, a one-time high school teacher, spearheaded the group that raised more than $1 million to build Lincoln's artificial turf Mike Walsh Field.
'They're a truly dynamic family,' says Mark Pinder, the school's athletic director. 'The kids are involved, and the parents devote their time and energy Ñ that's what makes your school a community.
'Without them and other families like them, our school wouldn't be what it is,' he says. 'We'd only be average.'
Tyler Colville will suit up Saturday for the North squad in the Les Schwab Bowl, the annual all-star football game that pits players from the Portland area against players from the rest of Oregon.
Game time is 7 p.m. at PGE Park.
Tyler's football career is likely to continue at Occidental College in Los Angeles, although he's torn between that sport and baseball. By the time he makes a decision, he'll have moved on from the Lincoln community, but the Colville name will remain.
Mark is staying on as football team doctor, and Amy is leading efforts to build bleachers on the north side of Mike Walsh Field, which would bring the seating capacity to about 5,000.
'Lincoln has been a wonderful school to be involved with,' Amy says. 'A lot of people see Lincoln as a school with a lot of advantages, and that's true, but there's a broad mix of students here, too. Hopefully, the kids here see what a great school it is and take advantage of it.'
Mark and Amy hail from Birmingham, Mich., where they were classmates at Groves High School. Amy was a cheerleader and tennis player. Mark was a top swimmer, finishing second in the state in the 100-yard freestyle as a senior.
Amy became a teacher, and Mark graduated from the University of Michigan medical school. They moved to Portland with sons in tow in 1986, when Mark secured a teaching position specializing in sports medicine at what was then Oregon Health Sciences University.
Shortly thereafter, he volunteered as the team doctor for the Portland State football team, a position he's held ever since.
'It was a natural extension of my job,' he says. 'And I thought it was important as a young member of the faculty to get involved and show what sports medicine was about.'
The go-to guy
Mark flies to PSU road games on Saturdays after attending Lincoln football games on Fridays.
PSU coach Tim Walsh credits Mark with creating a relaxed atmosphere between the medical staff and coaches, whose jobs are based on winning and having players able to play Ñ sometimes with some pain.
'His diagnosis for our players is usually right on,' Walsh says. 'When he says a guy is going to be out for two weeks, it's usually two weeks. That makes a big difference for us in planning.
'For the players, he's probably more important than even us coaches because he's the guy they look to for issues that relate to their health. He's been a great asset to our program.'
Portland State honored Mark in April as an Outstanding Friend of Athletics. He also is the team doctor for the Portland Winter Hawks and is an active hockey player.
Marshall Colville played varsity football for three seasons as a lineman, earning all-league honorable mention as a junior and senior. During his senior season, the Cardinals were headed for their first state playoff berth in 40 years until they had to forfeit several games.
Marshall headed to Claremont College in Los Angeles. He played football for two years and was a part-time surf bum. He dropped out last year and joined the Marine Reserves. This year, he was sent to the Middle East for Operation Enduring Freedom. He spent most of the past five months in Kuwait and then Iraq as a personnel clerk for the 6th Engineers, who are based at Swan Island.
'I felt safe where I was at, except when the Scuds went over us,' he says. 'I didn't kiss the ground when I got back, but I'm happy to be home.'
Marshall, who turned 21 on Saturday, plans to return to college.
By the time he graduated from Lincoln, mom Amy was ready to head the turf field project. She already had served as president of the school board for St. Thomas More School and had been organizing team dinners for Lincoln athletic teams.
'The group of parents from Marshall's years were really gung-ho on the idea of the turf field,' she says. 'A lot of the people who eventually donated were people they discovered.
'I hope that what we've been able to do will serve as an example for other schools in Portland. A lot of people think that Lincoln is special because of where it's located, but we got a lot of people to donate who weren't Lincoln alums.'
Tyler Colville, who played freshman baseball on the historic old field located inside the track, got to play on the new turf last fall as he guided Lincoln to the state playoffs as quarterback and defensive back for the third straight year. The National Football Foundation honored him as scholar of the year in December.
Tyler, who lettered three times in football, also helped Lincoln reach the state baseball playoffs this spring. In a game against Franklin, he pitched a three-hitter and homered twice, a sports memory that rivals the Cardinals' 18-point rally against Jefferson in football last fall Ñ a win that propelled the Cards to the state playoffs and knocked the Democrats out of postseason play.