Cornish Trophy 2022
Prior to that it was won in 2018 & 2019 by Ohio Bobcats QB Nathan Rourke. The trophy is in its’ fifth year but so far it has only had three winners. Metchie III is among the nominees again. Could we end up with three names in five years, or will a new name appear?
What is the Cornish Trophy?
The nominees are selected by a panel presided over by Football Canada.
All evaluations pertain solely to performances from the last season alone. The Cornish Trophy itself is on permanent display at the Canadian Football Hall of Fame at Tim Horton’s Field in Hamilton.
Why is it called that?
The trophy is named after Canadian RB Jon Cornish. Cornish had a successful college career with the Kansas Jayhawks. In 2006, he rushed for 1,457 yards, making him the all-time single-season rusher at Kansas.
Cornish Trophy 2022 Finalists
The selection committee for the Jon Cornish Trophy 2022 selected five finalists for the top Canadian in NCAA Football last season.
All of this year’s candidates are from Ontario. Let’s take a look at who they are.
John Metchie III
Sophomore/Receiver – Alabama
From: Brompton Ontario
Metchie won the fourth iteration of the trophy last year. He will be looking to join Nathan Rourke as a two time winner.
Named ALL-SEC following a 13 game slate that saw him make 96 catches for 1,142 yards, and eight touchdowns. Missed out on the playoffs with the Crimson Tide due to a torn ACL in the conference championship game.
Junior/Running Back – Illinois
From: London Ontario
Brown led Illinois with 170 carries for 1,005 yards and five touchdowns on the ground. As well as adding 14 receptions for 142 yards receiving.
He was the only returning player in the nation with two of the nation’s top 17 rushing games during 2021. Both of those games saw him go for over 200 yards. Which meant he joined Howard Griffith (1990) and Rashard Mendenhall (2007) as the only players in team history with multiple 200-yard rushing games in a single season.
Junior/Receiver – Hawai’i
From: Mississauga Ontario
Mardner saw a jump in production in 2021. During the 2020 season he had played in 8 games starting 2 recording 11 catches for 188 yards.
But that jump in production came last year as he started all 13 games for Hawai’i and had 46 receptions for 913 yards and five touchdowns.
Mardner will play his 2022 senior season at Cincinnati after transferring in December.
Junior/Receiver – Pittsburgh
From: Peterborough Ontario
Played in 13 games in 2021, starting four. Wayne had 47 receptions for 658 yards and six touchdowns. Having history as a High School QB he also had 3 pass attempts, completing 2 for 36 yards and a touchdown.
His father was a CFL Linebacker from 1987-1994 who had his best years with the Ottawa Rough Riders. He was voted most valuable Canadian player for the Rough Riders for four out of eight seasons.
Senior/Linebacker – Penn State
From: Ottawa Ontario
One of the leaders of the Penn State D, Luketa played 12 games, registering 34 solo tackles, 61 total tackles, 8.5 TFL, and an interception return for a touchdown.
Going from mostly special teams play in his freshman year, by his junior year Luketa was a team captain and finished that year with 59 tackles along with 2.5 tackles for loss, a fumble recovery and three passes broken up.
After displaying his versatility as a Senior, playing both Linebacker and Defensive End, he declared for this year’s Draft.
He has a connection to great CFL player Henoc Muamba who has given advice and guidance over time.
2017-18 — Nathan Rourke — So./QB — Ohio Bobcats/Oakville, Ont.
2018-19 — Nathan Rourke — Jr./QB — Ohio Bobcats/Oakville, Ont.
2019-20 — Chuba Hubbard — So./RB — Oklahoma State Cowboys/Sherwood Park, Alta.
2020-21 — John Metchie III — So./REC — Alabama Crimson Tide/Brampton, Ont.
2021-22 — TBD — April 19, 2022
Banner Image: Cornish Trophy 2022 candidate Chase Brown in action for Illinois. Image from fightingillini.com