A native son, Walt Arnold came to the University of New Mexico in 1976 after a stellar prep career at Los Alamos High School where he was an all-state performer in baseball and football.
So accomplished was Arnold in both sports that his services were in demand by UNM head coaches Bill Mondt (football) and Vince Cappelli (baseball). Arnold was up to the task, earning four letters in each sport. He was two-time All-Western Athletic Conference on the diamond, playing first base, catcher and in the outfield. On the gridiron, Arnold was even better as he played eight seasons in the National Football League after a stellar career at UNM.
Although Arnold was a linebacker and fullback in high school, coach Mondt moved Arnold to tight end. Though he did not see much time as a freshman, Arnold improved his statistics each year from 1976-79. Used in tandem with another strong tight end his sophomore season, Arnold caught 10 passes and led the team by averaging 22.3 yards per reception. He was a starter as a junior and eventually caught the eye of the professional scouts following his senior season, signing a free agent contract with the Los Angeles Rams.
Arnold enjoyed a fine NFL career, playing with the Rams, Houston Oilers, Washington Redskins and Kansas City Chiefs from 1980-87. He caught 99 passes for 1,053 yards and 7 TDs in a 105-game career. Perhaps his best season was 1985 when he had 28 catches for 339 yards in Kansas City.
After his playing days were over, Arnold returned to UNM and earned his bachelor's degree. He parlayed that education into a successful business career in Albuquerque. Arnold is president of his own commercial brokerage company and active in local and university communities. He is a past-president of the UNM Alumni Lettermen's Association and has been involved with the American Diabetes Association, Special Olympics, March of Dimes, Fellowship of Christian Athletes and many other service organizations.