McMaster receiver Vandervoort pulls down top rookie honour

QUEBEC CITY – McMaster Marauder wide receiver Daniel Vandervoort is the best rookie in Canadian collegiate football.

Daniel Vandervoort hauls in his first OUA touchdown for the Marauders vs Ottawa. He ended his freshman season with 31 catches for 594 yards and eight touchdowns in eight games. (Photo: Robin Leworthy Wilson/Aerial Promotions)

Daniel Vandervoort hauls in his first OUA touchdown for the Marauders vs Ottawa. He ended his freshman season with 31 catches for 594 yards and eight touchdowns in eight games. (Photo: Robin Leworthy Wilson/Aerial Promotions)

Vandervoort’s addition to the Peter Gorman Trophy was announced on Thursday night (Nov. 21) as part of Canadian Interuniversity Sport celebrations in advance of this weekend’s Vanier Cup game to declare a national champion – either Laval or Calgary.

Vandervoort becomes only the second Marauder to receive the Peter Gorman Trophy. He joins running back Kojo Aidoo, who was named rookie of the year in 1998 and went on to capture the Hec Crighton Trophy as CIS Most Valuable Player two years later.

A highly-touted recruit from Bear Creek Secondary School in Barrie, Ont., Vandervoort quickly made his mark on the CIS circuit. After catching six passes, including one for a touchdown, in McMaster’s season opener versus Ottawa, he had seven receptions for 172 yards in his second outing against Queen’s, including a 73-yard major, en route to OUA offensive player-of-the-week honours.

In week four, the 6-foot-2, 200-pound freshman scorched York for five catches, 117 yards and three scores.

Vandervoort ended his freshman season with 31 catches for 594 yards and eight touchdowns in eight games, earning him a spot on the second OUA all-star team. His eight receiving majors, one shy of the team record and a new McMaster standard for a rookie, were good for third place in Ontario, while his 594 yards ranked eighth in the conference.

“Danny had a great year and played at a level not usually seen from first-year athletes,” said McMaster head coach Stefan Ptaszek. “He was one of the hardest workers on the team from the first day of camp and had an incredible impact on this year’s Marauders. Some of the catches he made were highlight reel material, so I believe this award is well deserved. He’s going to have a great CIS career.”

Jordan Heather, a fifth-year quarterback from Bishop’s University, was named CIS football player of the year.

The history student from Oromocto, N.B., became the first member of the Gaiters program to claim the Hec Crighton Trophy since the inception of the award in 1967. He is the seventh straight pivot to receive the trophy since Windsor running back Daryl Stephenson was honoured in 2006.

Other CIS award winners announced during the Sun Life Financial All-Canadian Banquet were Western linebacker Pawel Kruba, who captured the Presidents’ Trophy as defensive player of the year; McGill offensive tackle Laurent Duvernay-Tardif, who merited the J.P. Metras Trophy as most outstanding down lineman; Bishop’s head coach Kevin Mackey, who claimed the Frank Tindall Trophy; and Calgary quarterback Andrew Buckley, the recipient of the prestigious Russ Jackson Award honouring excellence in football, academics and citizenship.


Heather made his final season with the Gaiters, his third as a starter, a memorable one. The 6-foot, 185-pound senior shattered one of the most prestigious single-season records in CIS football thanks to an astounding 3,132 passing yards in eight league games (391.5 yards per game), surpassing the mark of 3,047 set only a week earlier by Western’s Will Finch (Burlington), the OUA nominee for the Hec Crighton Trophy. The national standard before this fall was 3,033 by Michael Faulds, also of Western, in 2009.

Over the course of his magical campaign, Heather was named RSEQ player of the week four times and claimed the CIS honour on three occasions in nine contests, including playoffs. In addition to the CIS passing yards record, he set an RSEQ season mark with 20 touchdown passes – against only seven interceptions – and completed a team-record 199 passes (199-of-330 / 60.3%), tying him for first in the country this fall. His signature moment came on Sept. 28 when, despite a 46-38 loss to Laval, he threw for 538 yards against the nation’s top-ranked defence, a single-game school mark and the most in history by any quarterback against the defending Vanier Cup champion Rouge et Or.

Thanks to his spectacular play, the Gaiters took second-place in the ultra-competitive RSEQ conference with a 6-2 dossier, marking their first six-win season since 1993, and earned the right to host their first playoff game since 1994. Heather finished his university career as Bishop’s all-time leader in TD passes (50), completions (565), attempts (998) and yards (7,983).


Kruba, a fifth-year social sciences student from Windsor, Ont., became the third Western player to receive the Presidents’ Trophy, joining Derek Krete (1996) and Brent Lewis (1987).

In his final university season, the 5-foot-11, 210-pound senior placed second on the team with 38 tackles in eight league games (4.8 per game), including three for losses, and tied for the Mustangs’ lead with three interceptions. He was the heart and soul of a defensive unit which ranked second in Ontario and sixth in the country in both points allowed (18.5 ppg) and against the run (109.9 ypg), while also provoking 28 turnovers, the second highest total in CIS.

Kruba, who was a second-team OUA all-star a year ago, helped the Mustangs to first place in the OUA standings thanks to their first 8-0 regular season since 1998 and to No. 1 status in each of the last five national media polls.


Duvernay-Tardif, a native of St. Hilaire, Que., is only the second lineman in McGill’s storied history to claim the J.P. Metras Trophy. He joins current Calgary Stampeders defensive tackle Randy Chevrier, who was honoured in 2000 and went on to win a pair of Grey Cups following a stint in the NFL.

In his fourth CIS campaign, Duvernay-Tardif helped the Redmen finish first in the RSEQ conference in completion percentage (61.0) and second in both total yards (487.2 per game) and passing yards (326.9). The 6-foot-5, 305-pound senior was also a major factor in the ground game as teammate Luis Guimont-Mota took the Quebec rushing crown and placed sixth in the country with 828 yards in eight contests, becoming the first McGill running back to lead the RSEQ in rushing since Nick Hoffmann in 2002.

Named a first-team all-Canadian for the second straight season, the 22-year-old medical student was also the RSEQ nominee for the prestigious Russ Jackson Award, which honours excellence in football, academics and citizenship. Earlier this fall, he was listed as the top-rated prospect for the 2014 CFL Draft by the league’s Scouting Bureau. The Redmen co-captain has also generated interest from five NFL teams, including the New York Jets, Houston, Tennessee, Green Bay and Chicago.


Mackey is the third Gaiters bench boss to win the Frank Tindall Trophy. One of the youngest recipients in history at 34 years of age, he joins a pair of legendary coaches in Bruce Coulter (1986) and Ian Breck (1992) as leaders of the purple and silver to merit the award.

Mackey, who took the reins of the defence this year and brought in a pair of new assistant coaches in the off-season, operated a remarkable turnaround in his second campaign at the helm, improving the team’s record from 0-9 to 6-2, which marked Bishop’s first six-win season since 1993 (6-1). The Gaiters finished second in the RSEQ conference, arguably the most competitive in the country, and earned their first home playoff berth since 1994. Of their six victories in league play, three came by the slimmest of margins, a single point, including a pair over crosstown rival Sherbrooke.

Bishop’s, a school with an enrolment of just 2,400 students, had three players named RSEQ all-stars this fall, including Heather and receiver Alexander Fox, who earned first-team all-Canadian status.

A native of Ascot Corner, Que., a suburb of Sherbrooke, Mackey grew up idolizing Gaiter football. He attended Alexander Galt Regional High School and went on to play with the Champlain Cougars of the Quebec CEGEP league. Football led him to London, where he had a four-year playing career with the Western Mustangs before he returned to Bishop’s for his fifth and final season.


Buckley was the first Dino to win the Canada West nomination for the Russ Jackson Award since Mike MacDonald in 2003. Elio Geremia (1987) and Lincoln Blumell (2002) are the two previous national winners in Calgary history.

On the field, the graduate of Calgary’s Rundle College took over as the team’s starting quarterback late in the season opener after standout Eric Dzwilewski broke his foot and the Dinos barely skipped a beat with Buckley at the controls, cruising to their first-ever 8-0 record. The 6-foot, 193-pound pivot went on to pass for 2,184 yards and 12 touchdowns in eight contests and also added four rushing majors en route to a selection as a conference all-star.

In the classroom, Buckley is a two-time Academic All-Canadian with a career grade point average of 3.93 in kinesiology and has plans to follow in his father’s footsteps and enter medical school following his undergraduate work. He has received numerous academic awards since he arrived on the U of C campus, including a University of Calgary President’s Admission Scholarship and Undergraduate Merit Award. He is actively involved in many research projects, most recently making a presentation as part of the Faculty of Kinesiology’s Markin Undergraduate Student Research Program in October 2013 – right in the middle of football season.

Buckley is also heavily involved in the community. In 2011, he joined a group that travelled to Guatemala to build 500 efficient wood-burning stoves for impoverished families with the Hearts and Hands Foundation. The following year, he led the organization of a Dinos football camp for underprivileged and foster children of Sudanese decent in the Calgary area. He also remains actively involved volunteering for various senior citizens’ organizations, and is a home care volunteer with Alberta Health Services, working with two Alzheimer’s patients for 90 minutes per week.

All-time Major award winner

HEC CRIGHTON TROPHY (Outstanding Player)

2013 Jordan Heather, Bishop’s, QB
2012 Kyle Quinlan, McMaster, QB
2011 Billy Greene, UBC, QB
2010 Brad Sinopoli, Ottawa, QB
2009 Erik Glavic, Calgary, QB
2008 Benoît Groulx, Laval, QB
2007 Erik Glavic, Saint Mary’s, QB
2006 Daryl Stephenson, Windsor, RB
2005 Andy Fantuz, Western Ontario, REC
2004 Jesse Lumsden, McMaster, RB
2003 Tommy Denison, Queen’s, QB
2002 Tommy Denison, Queen’s, QB
2001 Ben Chapdelaine, McMaster, QB
2000 Kojo Aidoo, McMaster, RB
1999 Phil Côté, Ottawa, QB
1998 Éric Lapointe, Mount Allison, RB
1997 Mark Nohra, UBC, RB
1996 Éric Lapointe, Mount Allison, RB
1995 Don Blair, Calgary, REC
1994 Bill Kubas, Wilfrid Laurier, QB
1993 Tim Tindale, Western, FB
1992 Eugene Buccigrossi, Toronto, QB
1991 Tim Tindale, Western, FB
1990 Chris Flynn, Saint Mary’s, QB
1989 Chris Flynn, Saint Mary’s, QB
1988 Chris Flynn, Saint Mary’s, QB
1987 Jordan Gagner, UBC, QB
1986 Blake Marshall, Western, RB
1985 Larry Mohr, Queen’s, RB
1984 Phil Scarfone, McMaster, QB
1983 Greg Vavra, Calgary, QB
1982 Rick Zmich, Ottawa, QB
1981 Dan Feraday, Toronto, QB
1980 Greg Marshall, Western, RB
1979 Scott Mallender, Windsor, QB
1978 Jamie Bone, Western, QB
1977 Bob Cameron, Acadia, QB/K
1976 Bob Stracina, Acadia, REC/K
1975 Brian Fryer, Alberta, REC
1974 Al Charuk, Acadia, FS
1973 Dave Pickett, Saskatchewan, QB
1972 Andrew Parici, Windsor, QB
1971 Mel Smith, Alberta, REC
1970 Paul Paddon, Ottawa, QB
1969 Dave Fleiszer, McGill, FB
1968 Mike Raham, Toronto, RB
1967 Mike Eben, Toronto REC

PRESIDENTS’ TROPHY (Outstanding Defensive Player)

2013 Pawel Kruba, Western
2012 Frédéric Plesius, Laval
2011 Max Caron, Concordia
2010 Henoc Muamba, StFX
2009 Cory Greenwood, Concordia
2008 Thaine Carter, Queen’s
2007 Mat Nesbitt, Regina
2006 Patrick Donovan, Concordia
2005 Patrick Donovan, Concordia
2004 Mickey Donovan, Concordia
2003 Neil McKinlay, Simon Fraser
2002 Adam MacDonald, StFX
2001 David Stipe, Bishop’s
2000 Joey Mikawoz, Manitoba
1999 Mike Letendre, Saskatchewan
1998 Warren Muzika, Saskatchewan
1997 Jason Van Geel, Waterloo
1996 Derek Krete, Western
1995 Paul Frlan, StFX
1994 Cory Delaney, Waterloo
1993 Lou Tiro, Toronto
1992 Alex Eliopoulos, Saint Mary’s
1991 Ray Bernard, Bishop’s
1990 Randy Power, Mount Allison
1989 Mark Singer, Alberta
1988 Leroy Blugh, Bishop’s
1987 Brent Lewis, Western
1986 Mark Norman, UBC
1985 Darcy Kopp, Calgary
1984 Larry Oglesby, Mount Allison
1983 Tom Timlin, Carleton
1982 Mike Emery, UBC
1981 Mike Emery, UBC
1980 Rich Payne, Wilfrid Laurier

J.P. METRAS TROPHY (Outstanding Down Lineman)

2013 Laurent Duvernay-Tardif, McGill
2012 Ben D’Aguilar, McMaster
2011 Arnaud Gascon-Nadon, Laval
2010 Arnaud Gascon-Nadon, Laval
2009 Matt Morencie, Windsor
2008 Étienne Légaré, Laval
2007 Scott Evans, Wilfrid Laurier
2006 Chris Best, Waterloo
2005 Dominic Picard, Laval
2004 Troy Cunningham, Concordia
2003 Ibrahim Khan, Simon Fraser
2002 Israel Idonije, Manitoba
2001 Carl Gourgues, Laval
2000 Randy Chevrier, McGill
1999 Tyson St. James, UBC
1998 Garret Everson, Calgary
1997 Mike Kushnir, StFX
1996 James Repesse, Saskatchewan
1995 Harry Van Hofwegen, Carleton
1994 Paul Connery, Bishop’s
1993 Paul Chesser, Concordia
1992 Chris Konrad, Calgary
1991 Jason Rauhaus, Manitoba
1990 Chris Morris, Toronto
1989 Chris Gioskos, Ottawa
1988 Veron Stiliadis, Wilfrid Laurier
1987 Pierre Vercheval, Western
1986 Louie Godry, Guelph
1985 Mike Schad, Queen’s
1984 Boyd Young, Ottawa
1983 Jim DeSilva, Carleton
1982 Peter Langford, Guelph
1981 Tony Grassa, StFX
1980 Scott McArthur, Calgary
1979 Jim Muller, Queen’s
1978 Dave Willox, Alberta
1977 Dick Bakker, Queen’s
1976 Gerry Inglis, Alberta
1975 Mark Pothier, Saint Mary’s
1974 Bart Evans, Manitoba

PETER GORMAN TROPHY (Rookie of the Year)

2013 Daniel Vandervoort, McMaster
2012 Shaquille Johnson, McGill
2011 Tyler Varga, Western Ontario
2010 Eric Dzwilewski, Calgary
2009 Linden Gaydosh, Calgary
2008 Jordan Verdone, Waterloo
2007 Liam Mahoney, Concordia
2006 Dalin Tollestrup, Calgary
2005 Martin Gagné, Montréal
2004 Kyle Williams, Bishop’s
2003 Maxime Gagnier, Montréal
2002 Andy Fantuz, Western
2001 Jeremy Steeves, StFX
2000 Jean-Frédéric Tremblay, Laval
1999 Sébastien Roy, Mount Allison
1998 Kojo Aidoo, McMaster
1997 Paul Carty, StFX
1996 Jeff Johnson, York
1995 Éric Lapointe, Mount Allison
1994 Andre Arlain, StFX
1993 Jerome Pathon, Acadia
1992 Sean Reade, Western
1991 Dominic Zagari, Manitoba
1990 Bill Kubas, Wilfrid Laurier
1989 Chris Banton, Ottawa
1988 Grant Keaney, Mount Allison
1987 Dan Farthing, Saskatchewan
1986 Michael Soles, McGill
1985 Mark Brown, Carleton
1984 Jeff Funtasz, Alberta
1983 Paul Nastasiuk, Wilfrid Laurier
1982 Mike Fabilli, Ottawa
1981 Glenn Steele, UBC
1980 John Hutchinson, Mount Allison
1979 Joey Tynes, StFX
1978 John Lowe, Guelph
1977 Gord Goodwin, Calgary
1976 Jim Reid, Wilfrid Laurier

FRANK TINDALL TROPHY (coach of the year)

2013 Kevin Mackey, Bishop’s
2012 Stefan Ptaszek, McMaster
2011 Jeff Cummins, Acadia
2010 Glen Constantin, Laval
2009 Steve Sumarah, Saint Mary’s
2008 Pat Sheahan, Queen’s
2007 Frank McCrystal, Regina
2006 Denis Piché, Ottawa
2005 Glen Constantin, Laval
2004 Jerry Friesen, Alberta
2003 Gary Jeffries, Wilfrid Laurier
2002 Chuck McMann, McGill
2001 Brian Dobie, Manitoba
2000 Greg Marshall, McMaster
1999 Blake Nill, Saint Mary’s
1998 Larry Haylor, Western
1997 John Stevens, StFX
1996 Dan McNally, Guelph
1995 Rick Zmich, Wilfrid Laurier
1994 Brian Towriss, Saskatchewan
1993 Larry Uteck, Saint Mary’s
1992 Ian Breck, Bishop’s
1991 Rich Newbrough, Wilfrid Laurier
1990 Larry Haylor, Western
1989 Dave Knight, Waterloo
1988 Larry Uteck, Saint Mary’s
1987 Frank Smith, UBC
1986 Bruce Coulter, Bishop’s
1985 Peter Connellan, Calgary
1984 Steve Bruno, Mount Allison
1983 Doug Hargreaves, Queen’s
1982 Bernie Custis, McMaster
1981 John Huard, Acadia
1980 Cam Innes, Ottawa
1979 Dave “Tuffy” Knight, Wilfrid Laurier
1978 Frank Smith, UBC
1977 Peter Connellan, Calgary
1976 Darwin Semotiuk, Western
1975 Don Gilbert, Ottawa
1974 Ron Murphy, Toronto
1973 Ed Hilton, UPEI
1972 Dave “Tuffy” Knight, Wilfrid Laurier
1971 Jim Donlevy, Alberta
1970 Frank Cosentino, Western
1969 Henry Janzen, Manitoba

RUSS JACKSON AWARD (outstanding student-athlete & citizenship)

2013 Andrew Buckley, Calgary
2012 Zach Androschuk, Guelph
2011 Dillon Heap, Wilfrid Laurier
2010 Thomas Hall, Manitoba
2009 Thomas Hall, Manitoba
2008 David Hamilton, Toronto
2007 Clovis Langlois-Boucher, Sherbrooke
2006 Naim El-Far, Ottawa
2005 Dan Parker, Mount Allison
2004 Nathan Beveridge, UBC
2003 Curt McLellan, Queen’s
2002 Lincoln Blumell, Calgary
2001 Josh Alexander, Wilfrid Laurier
2000 Carlo Panaro, Alberta
1999 Carlo Panaro, Alberta
1998 Jean-Philippe Darche, McGill
1997 Sam Stetsko, Alberta
1996 Sean O’Neill, Carleton
1995 Ted MacLean, Saint Mary’s
1994 Steve Papp, McGill
1993 David Sykes, Saint Mary’s
1992 David Sykes, Saint Mary’s
1991 J.P. Veri, McGill
1990 J.P. Veri, McGill
1989 Jock Climie, Queen’s
1988 Andrew Allison, Mount Allison
1987 Elio Geremia, Calgary
1986 Charlie Galunic, Queen’s