FORT COLLINS - Ellen Nystrom and Elin Gustavsson came to Fort Collins as unknown players from Sweden. Four years later, they didn't just make a name for themselves, they changed the culture of the entire Colorado State women's basketball program.
The duo helped transform a team under head coach Ryun Williams into a Mountain West juggernaut. After their win over Nevada last Friday night, the Rams celebrated their fourth consecutive Mountain West regular season championship. Something no other team on the men's or women's side has ever accomplished.
Before the two arrived, CSU hadn't won a conference regular season title since the 2001-2002 season and had a combined record of 135-197. In the last four years the Rams have gone 102-25.
A lot of that also can be attributed to Williams, who has done a fabulous job coaching in his five years at CSU with an overall record of 113-44.
Now the Rams look to make it back-to-back years with NCAA Tournament appearances as they start their Mountain West Conference Tournament play on Tuesday, playing the winner of San Jose State and San Diego State.