Friday, June 03, 2011

Honor for QB Marcoux

At the Hanover Inn yesterday quarterback Cole Marcoux was presented with the Dartmouth's William S. Churchill Freshman Prize, which is ...
Awarded each year to the man in the first-year class whose academic achievement is outstanding and whose record of contribution in other areas indicates those qualities that Mr. Churchill wished to reward, especially those of fairness, respect for duty, and citizenship.
Who are the best QBs at each Ivy League school since the start of formal conference play in 1956? Here's the list that was included in the first post asking that question. (That first post also includes some, "others in the conversation.")
Brown–James Perry '00
Columbia–John Witkowski '84
Cornell–Gary Wood '64
Dartmouth–Jay Fiedler '94
Harvard–Ryan Fitzpatrick '05
Penn–Gavin Hoffman '02
Princeton–Bob Holly '82
Yale–Brian Dowling '69
A collection of comments received since the original post with regard to the list:
I'd put Bill King '63 and Mickey Beard ahead of Teevens. They were QBs of undefeated teams.
Kind of a cop-out, but if you like wishbone/I-bone quarterbacks, Yale had a good one in Nick Crawford in the early 1990s. Dude actually beat out a sophomore Jay Fiedler for first-team All-Ivy (a result I did not agree with). But if you are talking about arms… not so much. As for Dartmouth, he was before my time, but shouldn't Jim Chasey be in the discussion before Brian Mann? The guy did get the Bushnell Cup.
The best Dartmouth NFL quarterbacks were Fiedler and Jeff Kemp. As between them--that's beyond my pay grade but if you pushed me, I'd venture that Fiedler was the better athlete and leader while Kemp was a better passer.

At Dartmouth, Billy King, Mickey Beard and Jim Chasey. They quarterbacked the three best teams since 1925. They got it done against real competition. As between them, Mickey Beard had the best arm, was an excellent baseball player and a terrific play caller/leader/student of the game in an era when the quarterback actually ran the offense.

Archie Roberts was the best. Period. He played both ways (defensive back & QB). 60 minutes of punishment on terrible teams. Covered with blood in every game. Never complained, never quit. Played for the Browns, became a surgeon, beat life threatening illness. As a man and a player, Archie was the best ever.
Bobby Hall '66 for Brown QB. He was drafted by the Vikings. I think he played defensive back for the Vikings (could be wrong). Named to some All-America teams. Was the best player on poor Brown teams. Along with Chuck Mercein, Gene Ryzewicz, Tom Spangenberg and Gary Wood, probably the best backfield athlete in Ivy football during the '60's until Calvin Hill in the late '60's.
Kelly Ryan was Yale's 2nd best QB in my memory (my first Yale game was 1959)behind Dowling, and not that far behind.

Ivy League POY in 1987
I'd have to go with Marty Domres as the Lions' top QB. Archie Roberts was the best athlete -- he was first team All-America in baseball at shortstop and lettered in basketball as well, but Witkowski and Domres were better pure QBs. I give the nod to Domres because he broke all sorts of records with virtually no support, average receivers and no running attack. Witkowski's receivers were better and he had the advantage of a brilliant offensive scheme put together by assistant coach Dom Anile. Domres was also a first-round pick in the NFL draft.
Jay Fiedler, probably the most underrated QB in the NFL during his tenure at the Dolphins. In his last game with the Jags he put up such profound numbers against the Dolphins causing JJ to quit in disgust and prompt the Dolphins to take him as Marino's replacement. With Miami Jay put up good stats, despite a weak supporting cast, prompting Dolphin fanatics and press to continually "throw him under the bus". He then proceeded to beat out Brian Griese, All-Pro, and J. Feeley (received for a second round draft choice) to continue his leadership until he got hurt. Jay Fiedler had 5 Problems: he followed an icon, a legend, and a Hall of Famer; he had an average supporting cast, at best (i.e. running back, wide receiver (s) and left tackle); he was an Ivy-Leaguer, he was Jewish, and he didn't look like a starting NFL QB on TV, in the PRESS, or anyplace else.
Over at the Roar Lions Roar Columbia football blog, Jake Novak lists his top five Columbia QBs of all time as John Witkowski, Archie Roberts, Marty Domers, Don Jackson and Mike Cavanaugh with rising senior Sean Brackett bidding to make it onto that list with a successful final season. Jake's readers chime in here.

The Voy sports message board has a few thoughts and adds several more names to the conversation.
Email also delivered this on a quarterback who played for Dartmouth before the formal start of Ivy League play:
John Clayton '51 was the starting quarterback for three years 1948-50. His stats don't compare well to those who played in the more passing oriented offenses of the last 30 or so years. However, he was a winner and never lost to Yale or Harvard. He also had an outstanding backup ... I do recall (and I am certain that I am not dreaming this) that BOTH Clayton and his back up appeared in the 1950 East-West Shrine game in Kezar Stadium, San Francisco. At least I think that was the year and it would make sense that it was. The Shrine game garnered a great deal more attention in those days as there were no more than maybe a half dozen bowl games. I can still hear the surprised TV commentator announce that ANOTHER QB from Dartmouth was now in the game.
For some of us, a Providence Journal column sent this way by an old friend brought a chuckle. The column is headlined, "Johnny Canuck is again the pride of Vancouver." The story includes this:
But what, exactly, is a Canuck?
The friend who shared the link knows, and I know, for one important reason. Our high school nickname was ... you guessed it ... the Canucks. We were (and may still be) the only Canucks on this side of the border. The name, which goes back long, long before my high school days, refers to the fact that our town was north of the border with a neighboring town.

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