SPRINGFIELD, Mass. – November 29, 2006 – Junior quarterback Chris Sharpe of Springfield College continues to rake in the post-season awards.
The latest is certainly the most prestigious to date. Sharpe has earned the 33rd annual Division II/III Gold Helmet Award for the 2006 Season, according to the New England Football Writers Association.
Sharpe becomes the third player from Springfield College to earn this coveted award. The other two were middle guard Roy Samuelsen in 1976, and quarterback Kevin Cahill in 2000. Samuelson was just inducted this past October 14 into the Springfield College Athletic Hall of Fame. Cahill saw two of his NCAA Division III records broken by Sharpe this past season.
Sharpe became familiar with the New England Football Writers Association in the last several weeks by accepting three of the Gold Helmet Awards at the weekly luncheons at Dillon Field House at Harvard University. In fact, Sharpe won three in a span of seven weeks. The only other known player to win three Gold Helmets in one season was quarterback Marc Eddy of Bentley College in 2004. Sharpe earned the Gold Helmet Award following a 268-yard, 4-TD rushing, 2-TD passing effort in a 38-30 victory over Union on September 9; a 235-yard, 5-TD rushing effort in a 41-34 victory over Alfred on September 23; and a 280-yard, 7-TD rushing effort in a 55-38 regular-season victory over St. John Fisher on October 21.
The 5-9, 204-pound Derry, New Hampshire native led Head Coach Mike DeLong’s Springfield College team to a 10-2 overall record, a 5-1 mark and a co-championship in the very tough Empire 8 Conference, and an NCAA post-season tournament berth, its fifth in the last nine years, but its first since 2003. SC made it to the Second Round of the NCAA’s before losing the rematch (27-21) to St. John Fisher. SC was ranked #1 in the final New England Division III Coaches Poll (ranked #1 in eight of the nine weeks of that poll this season), and is currently ranked #15 in the d3football.com national poll.
Sharpe has been ranked #1 in the nation in Division III in several categories throughout the vast majority of the season. Even at this stage, he is currently ranked #1 in rushing yards per game (161.8), scoring per game (17.7), touchdowns (35), and rushing yards (1,941). He is ranked 9th nationally in all-purpose yards per game (161.7).
Sharpe has earned several other awards this season to date. Included are:
Empire 8 Offensive Player of the Year
Empire 8 First Team All-Conference
New England Football Writers Association All-New England First Team
Three-Time Gold Helmet Award winner (vs. Union, Alfred, St. John Fisher)
Four-Time Empire 8 Offensive Player of the Week
Three-Time ECAC Division III Northwest Offensive Player of the Week
Two-Time d3football.com National Quarterback of the Week
Two-Time Don Hansen’s Football Gazette National Team of the Week
Sharpe has been a record-setter of mammoth proportions during the 2006 season. He has set six NCAA Division III records and 12 Springfield College school records.
The NCAA Division III records (6) set by Sharpe in 2006 include:
Most Rushes by a Quarterback, Season – 261
Most Rushing Yards Gained by a Quarterback, Season – 1,941
Most Average Rushing Yards Per Game Gained by a Quarterback, Season – 161.8
Most Touchdowns Scored by Rushing, Season – Tied, 35
Most Rushing Touchdowns Scored by a Quarterback, Season – 35
Most Rushing Touchdowns Scored Per Game by a Quarterback, Season – 2.9
The Springfield College school records (12) set by Sharpe in 2006 include:
Most Points, Game – 42 vs. St. John Fisher (Oct. 21) (old record, 36)
Most Points, Season – 212 (old record, 136)
Most Points, Career – 306 (old record, 300)
Most Total Offense, Game – 375 yards vs. Union (old record, 303)
Most Total Offense, Season – 2,417 yards (old record, 1,909)
Most Total Offense Yards Per Game, Season – 201.4 (old record, 190.9)
Most Rushing Attempts, Season – 261 (old record, 257)
Most Rushing Yards, Game – 280 vs. St. John Fisher (Oct. 21) (old record, 268)
Most Rushing Yards, Season – 1,941 (old record, 1,348)
Most Rushing Touchdowns, Game – 7 (old record, 5)
Most Rushing Touchdowns, Season – 35 (old record, 22)
Most Rushing Touchdowns by a Quarterback, Season – 35 (old record, 20)
One New England Division III record set by Sharpe in 2006 includes (records from 2005 have yet to be completely updated):
Most Touchdowns in a Single Game – 7 (record tied)
Stats and Story from Springfield College Website.
Photos by Roy Chambers