Every weekday until UBC football's home opener on September 9th, GoThunderbirds.ca will release five former T-Birds on the list of 'The Top 100 UBC Football Players'. Follow along on the UBC football page of GoThunderbirds.ca. Support the 2017 version of the UBC Thunderbirds football program by purchasing your season tickets today at GoThunderbirds.ca/tickets.
Who is the greatest Thunderbird to ever play football for UBC? A lofty question and one that is hard to quantify. Comparing football players through generations is challenging. The game of football has seen countless changes in rules and equipment, since the first team of what were then called Canadian rugby-football players formed at Point Grey in 1923.
These obstacles did not deter UBC defensive coordinator Pat Tracey, however. Tracey, a self-confessed football stats and history 'geek', wanted to compile an easy to digest ranking list for fans and alumni alike. He went to work devising a ranking system to create a final compilation: 'The Top 100 UBC Football Players'.
Here are numbers 35 - 31. Let the debate begin.
35) Derek Townsend (DB/KR):
Led UBC in punt returns ('04),
Led Canada West punt returns ('05,'06), including Canada West longest return 110-yards vs. Simon Fraser, Oct. 6th, 2005 and most return yards in a game with 152-yards vs. Simon Fraser, Oct. 6th, 2005
Canada West Special Teams Player of the Week – Oct. 30th, 2006 and Oct. 1st, 2007. Led UBC in punt returns, kickoff returns and all-purpose yardage ('07)
Canada West record most kickoff returns in a career (74), most punt returns in a career (215)
Led Canada West kickoff returns ('05,'07)
Canada West All-Star ('05,'06,'07)
Holds school records for most punt returns in a game (12) vs. Manitoba, Sept. 4th, 2004
Most kickoff return yards in a career (1,498), most kickoff returns in a career (74), most punt returns in a career (215), most kickoff returns in a career (74), most punt return yards in a career (1,978)
Set school records for most kickoff return yards in a season (607), most punt returns in a season (58) and kickoff returns in a season (28)
34) Gary Metz (K/P):
Hardy Cup Champion (76)
Hardy Cup Finalist ('77)
Hardy Cup and Western Bowl Champion ('78)
Led UBC in scoring ('74,'75,'77,'78)
Led UBC in FG's and converts ('76,'77,'78)
Holds school record for most converts in a career (116) and highest kickoff average in a season (65.7)
Set records for most converts in a season (43) and most converts in a game (7) vs. Manitoba, Sept. 16th 1978
Set records for most field goals (42), field goal attempts in a career (56), points in a career (269), highest FG % in a career (75%) and highest kickoff average in a game 67.5-yards vs. Manitoba, Oct. 21st, 1978
33) Craig Keller (WR/KR):
Vanier Cup Champion ('86)
Hardy Cup, Western Bowl Champion ('87)
Led UBC in receiving average, longest reception and most yards in a game, 108-yards vs. Manitoba, Oct. 18th, 1986.
Led Canada West in receiving TD ('87), led UBC in receptions, yardage including 155-yards vs. Saskatchewan, Sept. 26th, 1987, punt return average and kickoff returns ('87).
Led UBC in reception average and longest reception ('88).
Canada West All-Star ('87).
Holds school record for highest receiving average in a career (19.0)
32) Chris Davies (WR):
Hardy Cup Champion ('76),
Hardy Cup Finalist ('77),
Hardy Cup, Western Bowl Champion ('78),
Led Canada West in receptions and yardage ('78)
Led UBC in receptions and yardage ('79)
Canada West All-Star ('78,'79)
Can-Am Bowl ('76,'77)
Set school records for highest receiving average in a career (15.6), receptions in a season (69), receptions in a career (152), receptions in a game with (11) vs. Puget Sound, Oct. 7th, 1978 and receiving yards in a career (2,542)
Holds school record for most TD receptions in a season (13), TD receptions in a career (26) and receiving yards in a season (1,095)
Had eight 100+ Yard Games including a career high 146-yards vs. Manitoba, Sept.16th, 1978