HANOVER, N.H. — The Dartmouth football team gathered last week for its annual team banquet while handing out the team awards with the Coach Bob Blackman Trophy, bestowed upon the team MVP, going to senior All-America linebacker Folarin Orimolade.
Orimolade (Burtonsville, Maryland) won the Bushnell Cup as the Ivy League Defensive Player of the Year and was a finalist for the Buck Buchanan Award, which is given to the top defender in the FCS, after leading the nation in forced fumbles per game (0.5) and ranking ninth in sacks per game (0.9). The tri-captain’s 83 tackles and 14.5 for a loss led the Big Green as well, and he finished his career in Hanover with 143 tackles, 35 tackles for a combined loss of 207 yards, 23.5 sacks (second all-time at Dartmouth) for 173 yards, 10 forced fumbles and eight passes broken up. Both STATS and Athlon named Orimolade to its All-America First Team, becoming just the third Big Green player in the last 20 seasons to be selected for the first team from any organization, while the Associated Press and American Football Coaches Association had him on their second team.
The Alan Hewitt ’34 and Robert Hewitt ’40 Award, given to the player who best epitomizes athletic performance with academic achievement, was earned by senior safety Charlie Miller (Shoreview, Minnesota). An economics major with a 3.49 GPA, Miller played in nine games, starting eight, recording 41 tackles, 1.5 for a loss, a pair of interceptions and five passes broken up. Miller also blocked a field goal that helped preserve a 20-17 victory over Towson on Oct. 15, earning the Ivy League Special Teams Player of the Week award. The 6-0, 190-pound senior also was named CoSIDA Academic All-District I Team and Fall Academic All-Ivy League, plus was chosen for the NFF Hampshire Honor Society just this past week.
Junior Jack Heneghan (Haymarket, Virginia) was the recipient of the Jake Crouthamel Award as the offensive player among the underclassmen who made the most significant contribution to the success of the team. The 6-4, 225-pound quarterback, had the unenviable task of replacing Dartmouth’s all-time leading passer in Dalyn Williams, yet he posted comparable numbers by leading the league in both passing yards (2,725) and total offense (2,974). In the season opener, he led the Big Green to victory over 22nd-ranked New Hampshire in his first career start, rallying from a 14-point, fourth-quarter deficit. Four times Heneghan, threw for at least 300 yards in a game, including a school-record 440 against Brown while also setting the Dartmouth record with 475 total yards. Heneghan finished the season completing 247-of-414 passes (59.7 completion percentage) with 11 touchdowns, and his 2,725 yards through the air are the third most in a Big Green season.
The Kenneth T. Young Award, bestowed upon the top defensive player among the underclassmen, went to freshman Isiah Swann (Queen Creek, Arizona). In his first season with the Big Green, the 6-0, 180-pound cornerback tied for the team lead in both interceptions (2) and passes defended (8) while ranking fourth in tackles with 44. Swann’s first collegiate start may have been his best as he had a game-high 13 tackles, an interception and three PBUs in a 20-17 win over Towson as he was named not just the Ivy League Defensive Player of the Week, but also the STATS FCS National Freshman Player of the Week.
Senior Jeremiah Douchee (Chicago, Illinois) was the recipient of the Lester R. Godwin Award, presented to the senior football squad member who has risen above personal disadvantage to contribute measurably to the team. Injuries had dogged him throughout his career, but he was healthy this past fall, playing in all 10 games while recording 14 tackles as a reserve defensive lineman. His biggest contributions, however, came on special teams as he blocked three kicks, one on a field goal to preserve a three-point win over Towson, the other two coming against Harvard.
Earning the Gordon P. Bennett Award as the outstanding lineman was senior tri-captain David Morrison (Latham, New York). A first-team All-Ivy League offensive lineman, as well as a member of the All-New England Team, Morrison played a key role in protecting Heneghan from his position at right tackle. The Big Green led the conference in passing yards (278.7 per game), which put them 15th among all FCS teams, plus was second among Ancient Eight schools with 408.6 yards of total offense per game (36th nationally).
Danny McManus (Mendota Heights, Minnesota) was given the Earl Hamilton Varsity Award as the senior who displayed a sincere friendliness and sense of humor plus appreciation of the outdoors that characterized Hamilton, the freshman football coach from 1955-65 and varsity backfield coach from 1966 until his passing in 1968. The third of three brothers to play at Dartmouth for Buddy Teevens, the Robert L. Blackman Head Football Coach, McManus was sidelined for the season after three games, but never let his optimism and encouragement for the team waver. In his three contests, the senior cornerback averaged nine tackles a game with a high of 14 against Penn.
It came as no surprise that the Earl Hamilton Freshman Award was bestowed upon Hunter Hagdorn (Manvel, Texas) as the freshman who made the biggest contribution to the team and had the characteristics of Hamilton as well. The 6-0, 180-pound wide receiver was also the Ivy League Rookie of the Year while ranking second in the league in both receptions (56) and receiving yardage (706). Three times he topped 100 yards in a game with a season high of 171 against Brown on 13 catches. Hagdorn was also one of just four Ivy League players to top 1,000 all-purpose yards on the season, just eclipsing the mark with 1,002.
Jack Traynor (Lake Forest, Illinois) was the recipient of the Doten Award as the member of the sophomore class who made a significant contribution to the success of the team. The 6-0, 230-pound linebacker played in eight games and tied for sixth on the team with 41 tackles with a season high of seven in the win over Towson (along with two pass breakups) and again against Harvard.
Senior Alex McCrory (Springfield, Ohio) received the Frank Hershey Award as the player who, judged by his teammates, possesses a genuine zest for life, a strong, upbeat attitude and a sincere desire to win because of his dedication and love for the game, his team and Dartmouth College. A 6-1, 230-pound linebacker, McCrory had the gift of gab and an eternally upbeat attitude, even when his senior season was cut short by injury with five games still left on the schedule. He recorded five tackles in the season-opening, 22-21 upset victory over 22nd-ranked New Hampshire, the last two of which came during the Wildcats’ final drive to help thwart a comeback in the final 1:40.
The Stubby Pearson Award, established in 2007 and presented to an underclassman on the football team whose character, leadership on campus, high academic standing and performance on the playing field most resembles that of Charles “Stubby” Pearson ’42, was handed to junior Charles Mack (Woodbridge, Virginia). Having seen action in all 10 games with seven starts, the 6-0, 200-pound wide receiver caught 15 passes for 189 yards and a team-best three touchdowns, one in the win over UNH, and another in a 17-13 win at Cornell.
The recipient of the John M. Manley ’40 Award was senior Lucas Bavaro (Boxford, Massachusetts) for demonstrating the most improvement through his effort in the weight room. The nickelback was named an All-Ivy League honorable mention as he ranked second on the team with 61 tackles, three for a loss, plus recovered two fumbles and broke up four passes.
The 12th Man Award, presented to the member of the varsity football team who demonstrated hard work and dedication regardless of playing time, was given to senior Abrm McQuarters (Tulsa, Oklahoma). The reserve running back carried the ball 17 times for 49 yards, 23 of which came in the win over UNH, plus threw a 23-yard touchdown pass in the win over Towson. That gave him one rushing touchdown, one receiving and one passing in his career, during which he ran for 204 yards.
Senior Graydon Peterson (Whitefish Bay, Wisconsin) took home the Special Teams Award after serving as the team’s long snapper for four years. The 6-1, 235-pound specialist had a knack for getting involved on tackles on punt coverage, recording eight tackles in his career and even forcing a fumble as a rookie. In large part due to his accuracy, Dartmouth had just one punt blocked during his tenure.
The scout team players of the year were freshman quarterback Jared Gerbino (Rush, New York) for offense and freshman linebacker Nigel Alexander (Orlando, Florida) on defense.
The recipient of the Reggie Williams Award, presented to the member of the Big Green football program who through leadership in action and word has made Dartmouth a better place, was senior tri-captain Brandon Cooper (Grand Prairie, Texas). The defensive lineman posted 32 tackles with a half sack to his credit, plus batted down two passes at the line of scrimmage. He had at least one tackle in every game with a season high of five in the one-point win over UNH.
Finally, senior defensive lineman Michael Warren (Maple Grove, Minnesota) was honored with the Manners Makyth Man Award. This distinction goes each year to the player who best conducted himself to the advantage of Dartmouth and displayed good manners in the sense of William Wykeham’s phrase, “Manners Makyth Man.”