IU men’s soccer legend Armando Betancourt dies at age 63

IU men’s soccer has lost its second all-time great in the last 13 months.

Three-time All-American (1979-81) Armando Betancourt died on Wednesday in in San Pedro Sula, Honduras. He was 63 years old.

“We lost an IU legend today,” head men’s soccer coach Todd Yeagley said in a release from IU Athletics. “Armando was a wonderful player with attacking gifts very few players possess.

“He helped IU soccer become a national power and then went on to represent Honduras in the 1982 World Cup. He is one of the all-time greats to wear the IU jersey and a legendary player for Honduras.

“His gifts on the field were special, yet his wonderful personality, incredible smile, humility and compassion for others made him a superstar. For everyone who knew Armando, we all have a heavy heart today but feel so lucky to have called him a friend.”

Betancourt was named Soccer America’s Player of the Decade for the 1980s and earned All-America honors during all three of his seasons at IU. He opened the decade by winning the Hermann Trophy in 1981 and earned first team All-America honors for the second time in his career that same season. During his magical 1981 season, the Hoosiers went 20-3 and saw Betancourt scored a career-best 27 goals, the second most by an IU player for a single season, and notched an Indiana record 63 points.

Betancourt’s first All-America season came in 1979 when he tallied 20 goals and 52 points as the Hoosiers posted a 19-2-2 mark and advanced to the NCAA quarterfinals. The 1980 season saw Betancourt score 17 goals and 50 points as he helped lead the Hoosiers to the national championship match.

He is one of two players (Ken Snow) in IU history with three 50-plus point seasons. Betancourt, nicknamed “El Cañón”, ranks third on the school’s all-time points scored list with 64 goals and 165 total points, despite playing just three seasons before turning professional.

Betancourt was one of three Hoosiers (Angelo DiBernardo, Snow) named to Soccer America’s All-Century team in 2000. Betancourt was elected to the IU Hall of Fame in 1992, joining five other Indiana men’s soccer players in the IU Hall of Fame.

Snow passed away in June, 2020.

Find us on Facebook:  thedailyhoosier

You can follow us on Twitter:  @daily_hoosier

The Daily Hoosier –“Where Indiana fans assemble when they’re not at Assembly”

Seven ways to support completely free IU coverage at no additional cost to you.