Gino Gordon Named Ivy League co-Player of the Year, Asa S. Bushnell Cup Recipient

Gino Gordon and Dartmouth's Nick Schwieger at the 2010 Bushnell Cup presentation at the Waldorf=Astoria Hotel (Gene Boyers)
Gino Gordon and Dartmouth's Nick Schwieger at the 2010 Bushnell Cup presentation at the Waldorf=Astoria Hotel (Gene Boyers)

NEW YORK, N.Y. – Harvard senior running back Gino Gordon was named the co-recipient of the Asa S. Bushnell Cup which honors the Ivy League Football Player of the Year. Gordon shares the honor with Dartmouth tailback Nick Schwieger, and duo were awarded their trophies Monday morning in a ceremony at the Waldorf=Astoria Hotel in New York City.

Gordon is the sixth Harvard player, and fifth in the last 10 years, to earn Player of the Year honors. 

In the first postseason awards ceremony for the league's top player, Gordon and Schwieger were joined as finalists by Penn quarterback Billy Ragone and Princeton wide receiver Trey Peacock as part of the festivities surrounding the 53rd National Football Foundation Annual Awards Dinner.

Gordon (Bonita, Calif.), a two-time All-Ivy League first team selection and three-time all league honoree who was also named to the New England Football Writers' All-New England team, ran for 1,059 yards this season, the seventh-highest single-season mark at Harvard, becoming the first player in four years to reach the 1,000-yard mark.

Gordon led the Ivy League at 6.3 yards per carry and became just the fifth player at Harvard to record 10 rushing touchdowns in a single season. Notably, Gordon did significant damage on the road, where he averaged a gaudy 7.7 yards per carry this season in five games away from Harvard Stadium.

"Gino was our Most Valuable Player in so many ways," said Tim Murphy, the Thomas Stephenson Family Head Coach for Harvard Football. "First and foremost he produced at an extremely high level on the field game after game since his freshman year. He was perhaps the best open field runner in Harvard history with an amazing 5.3 yards per carry for his career which is among the best in Ivy League history.

"What made Gino special though was the fact that he was the rare running back with no weaknesses.  He was a great inside and outside runner. He was perhaps the best blocking back in Harvard history and was flexible enough to play wide receiver. What really distinguished Gino among his peers and coaches was his leadership. No one worked harder, no one was did a better job leading by example and he was always willing to hold his team mates to the same high standard he held himself."

He had six 100-yard rushing efforts including one 200-yard outburst on the season. In the month of October alone, he collected more rushing yards than he had in all of 2009 in a year in which he was a first team All-Ivy selection while averaging 8.1 yards per carry. The month of October saw Gordon start with 170 yards and two touchdowns on just 12 carries at Lafayette. He played in just one series of the second half with the Crimson up big – and capped his day with a 74-yard touchdown, marking the longest run from scrimmage for Harvard since 2006. Following 158 yards against Cornell and 118 versus Lehigh, Gordon had a career day on the road at Princeton.

Against the Tigers, Gordon had 204 ground yards on 20 carries with a touchdown and four receptions for 30 yards to earn the New England Football Writers' Gold Helmet as the top performer in the region.

The following week, Gordon ran for 93 first half yards in a win at Dartmouth before sitting out the second half with a comfortable lead. That broke his string of 100-yard games but he was back at it the following week with 109 yards against Columbia. Against defensive stalwart Pennsylvania, Gordon had 113 yards, becoming the first player in 33 games to do so against the Quakers' de­fense.  

For his career, he ran for 2,643 yards – the fourth-highest mark in school annals. He ran for 23 touchdowns and had 25 scores in all. Gordon will graduate as Harvard's all-time leader in yards per carry at 5.3, ahead of the Ivy League's all-time leading rusher Clifton Dawson '07. Following the season, he was chosen by his teammates to receive the Frederick Greeley Crocker Award as the program's most valuable player.

Schwieger (Norton, Mass.) enjoyed one of the best seasons ever for a Big Green running back, accumulating 1,133 yards -- the second most in school history -- on 242 carries to lead the Ivy League in rushing for the second-straight year and rank fifth nationally at 125.9 yards per game while tying a school record with 14 rushing touchdowns. He also was second on the team with 28 receptions for 210 yards, plus tossed a 62-yard touchdown pass during the season. Six times Schwieger posted 100-yard games with a season-high of 216 at Bucknell. He was named the Ivy League Offensive Player of the Week three times and led the League in scoring at 9.3 points per game (84 total) and all-purpose yards (158.8 per game), ranking among the top 15 in the country in both statistical categories.

Presented annually since 1970, the Asa S. Bushnell Cup honors its namesake, a 1921 Princeton alumnus and the commissioner of the Eastern College Athletic Conference from 1938 to 1970. The Bushnell Cup is presented by the Eastern Association of Intercollegiate Football Officials and is awarded by a vote of the Ivy League's eight head football coaches to the player who displays outstanding qualities of leadership, competitive spirit, contribution to the team, and accomplishments on the field.

On winning the award...
"First of all, it is a great honor to win this award. I took a look at the names of past winners and it is great to be sharing it with them and it is also great to be sharing it with Nick [Schwieger] because he is a great athlete and a really great player. I think, especially for a running back, this turns into a team award because as a running back you are only as good as your offensive line. This award also says a lot about how well our team came together so, again, it is a great honor.

Reflecting on his four years with the Harvard football team...
"I have had a lot of personal success and I cherish that but what really warms my heart is that I spent four years getting to know new players each year, creating a brotherhood where all of us struggled together, bled together, did everything together; it was a great experience and I am so thankful to have been a part of it."

Asa S. Bushnell Cup All-Time Recipient List
1970 - Jim Chasey, QB, Dartmouth & Ed Marinaro#, RB, Cornell
1971 - Ed Marinaro#, RB, Cornell
1972 - Dick Jauron*, RB, Yale
1973 - Jim Stoeckel, QB, Harvard
1974 - Walt Snickenberger, RB, Princeton
1975 - Doug Jackson, RB, Columbia
1976 - John Pagliaro, RB, Yale
1977 - John Pagliaro, RB, Yale
1978 - Buddy Teevens, QB, Dartmouth
1979 - Tim Tumpane, LB, Yale
1980 - Kevin Czinger*, MG, Yale
1981 - Rich Diana*, RB, Yale
1982 - John Witkowski, QB, Columbia
1983 - Derrick Harmon, RB, Cornell
1984 - Tim Chambers, DB, Penn
1985 - Tom Gilmore*, DT, Penn
1986 - Rich Comizio, RB, Penn
1987 - Kelly Ryan, QB, Yale
1988 - Jason Garrett, QB, Princeton
1989 - Judd Garrett, RB, Princeton
1990 - Shon Page, RB, Dartmouth
1991 - Al Rosier, RB, Dartmouth
1992 - Jay Fiedler, QB, Dartmouth
1993 - Keith Elias*, RB, Princeton
1994 - Pat Goodwillie, LB, Penn
1995 - Dave Patterson, LB, Princeton
1996 - Chad Levitt, RB, Cornell
1997 - Sean Morey, WR, Brown
1998 - Jim Finn, RB, Penn
1999 - James Perry, QB, Brown
2000 - Gavin Hoffman, QB, Penn
2001 - Carl Morris, WR, Harvard
2002 - Carl Morris, WR, Harvard

2003 - Mike Mitchell, QB, Penn
2004 - Ryan Fitzpatrick, QB, Harvard
2005 - Nick Hartigan*, RB, Brown
2006 - Jeff Terrell, QB, Princeton
2007 - Mike McLeod, RB, Yale
2008 - Chris Pizzotti, QB, Harvard
2009 - Buddy Farnham, WR, Brown & Jake Lewko, LB, Penn
2010 - Gino Gordon, RB, Harvard & Nick Schwieger, RB, Dartmouth

# Denotes an inductee into the College Football Hall of Fame
* Denotes a recipient of an NFF National Scholar-Athlete Award