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 20 - 16. Let the debate begin.
20) Gord Penn (RB/KR):
Hardy Cup Champion (76)
Hardy Cup Finalist ('77)
Hardy Cup and Western Bowl Champion ('78)
Nestle Pre-Season All-Canadian ('76)
UBC leader in receptions, yards, touchdowns, rushing and scoring in ('76)
Frank Knupp Conference MOP ('76)
Maury Van Vliet Trophy Western Bowl MOP ('78)
Canada West Rushing Leader ('76)
Canada West All-Star ('75,'76)
Tied school record for most points scored in a game (24) vs. Manitoba, Oct. 11th, 1975.
Set school record for kickoff return TDs in a season (1), most rushing yards in a career (3,959), carries in a career (748), carries in a season (185), all-purpose yards in a season (1,498), rushing yards in a season (1,450) and rushing TD's in a career (26)
Holds school record for all-purpose yards in a career (5,181)
9th Rd, 80th overall ('76 CAL)
19) Shawn Olson (QB):
Hardy Cup Finalist ('96,'98,'99)
Vanier Cup Champion ('97)
Led UBC in passing ('96,'97,'98,'99,'00) including a season high 293-yards vs. Calgary, Oct. 26th, 1996.
402-yards vs. Mt. Allison in the Atlantic Bowl, Nov. 15th, 1997, 330-yards vs. Regina, Sept. 18th 1999, 394-yards vs. Regina, Oct. 21st, 2000.
Led Canada West in passing ('98) completions, TD's and yardage including a 95-yard TD vs. Saskatchewan, Oct. 3rd 1998.
Hardy Cup MOP ('97),
Don Loney Atlantic Bowl MOP ('97),
Frank Knupp Conference MOP & CIS Hec Crighton Nominee ('00)
Canada West All-Star ('98,'99)
Holds school record for most rushing TD's by a QB (12), set records for rushing TD's by a QB (5), carries (70) and yards (404) in a season and rushing yards in a career (1,022)
18) Matt Pearce (RB/KR/WR):
Vanier Cup Champion ('86)
Hardy Cup, Western Bowl Champion ('87)
Canada West Record Most Punt Return TD's in a Season (3)
Canada West Record Most Punt Return TD's in a Season (4)
Canada West Peter Gorman Rookie Award ('85)
Led Canada West punt returns ('85,'88)
Led Canada West kickoff returns ('88)
Led UBC in kickoff returns ('85,'86), led UBC in punt returns ('86,'87,'88), led UBC in rushing ('87,'88),
Canada West All-Star ('85)
3rd Rd pick, 23rd overall CFL ('89-'95 WPG)
Holds school records for most punt return TD's in a career (4), set records for most kickoff return yards in a season (492), most kickoff returns in a season (20), most kickoff returns in a career (44), most punt returns in a career (139), most punt return yards in a game (160) and longest punt return in a game 101-yards vs. Calgary Oct. 25th, 1985
17) Quinn van Gylswyk (K/P):
Vanier Cup Champion ('15),
CIS Special Teams Player of the Week – Sept. 23rd, 2013 and Nov. 9th, Nov. 16th, Nov. 23rd and Nov. 30th 2016
Led UBC in FGs and scoring ('13,'14,'15)
Led Canada West punting average ('13,'14,'15)
Canada West All-Star ('13,'15)
3rd Rd pick, 26th overall CFL ('16,'17 SASK).
Holds school records for most points scored in a season by a rookie (87), most punting yards in a season by a rookie (3,239) and highest FG's % in a season by a rookie (85.7)
Most field goals in a career (70), FG's in a season (40), kickoff yards in a season (3,219), most kickoff's in a season (60), most FG's attempts in a season (49), most FG's attempted in a career (92), most points scored in a season (172) and a career (322)
16) Roger Hennig (DB/K/KR):
Hardy Cup, Western Bowl Champion ('87)
Hardy Cup Finalist ('89)
Led UBC in kickoff's ('88,'89) and Canada West, Led Canada West in scoring ('89,'90,'91), converts ('89,'91), FG's ('89,'90,'91) and Canada West with (4) vs. Saskatchewan, Oct. 6th, 1990. Led UBC in interceptions ('88,'91), Led UBC in punting ('89,'90,'91), Led UBC in blocked kicks ('90), Canada West Presidents Trophy Defensive MOP ('91), 2-time All-Star ('91) at both kicker and DB, All-Canadian ('91)
7th Rd pick, 49th overall CFL ('03-'07 HAM)
Set school records for most FGs in a game (50) and assisted tackles in a career (69)