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Front Row: Tim Leach, Jim Colton, Jeff Avery, Neil Lumsden, Bob Ceserato, DT White, Sam Miller, Steve Carlo, Paul Kilger, Clarence Coleman, Bill McNeely, Mike O'Conner, Connie Mineault

Second Row: Pat Leach, Terry West, Eric Upton, Mike Dalton, Dan Medwin, Mark Ribbins, Allan Moffat, Dan Sartor, Dan Hunt, Bill Cherniuk, Pete Hazzan, Ian MacPherson, Doug Falconer 

Third Row: Cam Thompson, Duncan Armstrong, Julian Hanlon, Brian Keating, Tim Berryman, Greg Nazar, Ken Guarisco, Mike Murphy, Doug Grant, Kevin Heney, Sandy Grey, Mike Kelly, Yves Leclerc
 

Fourth Row: Jeff Woods, Hugh Fraser, Guy Dagenais, Scotty Bartle, Tim Gusscot, Bill Adams, Billy Harrison, Miles Gorrell, Vince Zvonkin, Paul Britzky, Rocky DiPietro, Dave Jaworski

Back Row: Paul Flynn (Equipment Manager), Chuck Weeks (Assistant Trainer), Jerry Bourgon (Trainer), Dan Slee (DB Coach), Dwight Fowler (Defensive Coordinator), Don Gilbert (Head Coach), Jerry Kwopiz (DL Coach), Ace Powel (OL Coach), Bob Swan (Receiver Coach), Bill Forrester (Guest Coach)

 

The Vanier Cup
The Vanier Cup

 

 

Vanier Cup Champions

By the time the 1975 Canadian Interuniversity Sport (CIS) football season was over the Gee Gees had amassed a perfect 11-0 record. After a perfect regular season, they won the Yates Cup, then the Churchill Bowl and the right to play for National Championship of Canada and the Vanier Cup. The crowning achievement came on November 21,1975. The game was played at CNE Stadium in Toronto. That night the Gee Gees became the first undeated team in Vanier Cup history. This team would leave the greatest legacy in history of Canadian college football.

Today, some 35 years later, the 75 team still holds several Canadian Interuniversity Sports (CIS) and OUAA team and individual records. Players from the 1975 team were selected to the CIS All-Canadian team 13 times during their college careers. During their CIS careers players from the 1975 team were selected as OUAA All-Stars 42 times. As of 2012, 11 Gee Gees from the 1975 team have been inducted into the University of Ottawa Football Hall of Fame.

In all, 21 players from the 1975 Vanier Cup Championship team would go on to be selected in the Canadian Football League (CFL) draft, a CIS record. This record, one that may never be broken, is even more remarkable considering that an additional 10 Americans from the 1975 team were not eligible for the CFL Draft. Those American players included Tim Leach, Pat Leach, Steve Carlo, Peter Hazzan, Ken Guarisco, Brian Keating, Jim Colton, David “DT” White, Sam Miller and Paul Britzky. All but 3 of these Gee Gees would be selected as CIS All-Canadians and OUAA All-Stars multiple times during their CIS careers.

The 1975 Gee Gees had All-Stars at every position. They had not only 1 great running back, they had 3 All-Canadian running backs including Neil Lumsden (All Canadian-1975), Billy Harrison (All-Canadian-1975) Mike Murphy (All Canadian-1976). All 3 were 1rst round picks in the CFL draft. No one in the history of the CIS has scored more career points than Lumsden (410). Since 1975 no one in CIS history has scored more points in a single season than did Neil Lumsden (148). Only 1 player has come close. That player was his running mate, Mike Murphy (144). It took 28 years for another team in the OUAA (2003 Mc Master) to score more touchdowns in an 8 game season than did the 1975 Gee Gees team scored in 7 games (43). Lumsden and Murphy both went on to be the CFL Eastern Conference Rookie of the Year (1976-77). Lumsden was voted the Grey Cup’s Canadian MVP in 1981.

In addition to their 3 All-Canadian running backs, the 1975 Gee Gee’s passing game was led by OUAA All-Star QB Jim Colton, a native of Buffalo, NY. The 1975 Gee Gees wide receivers included 2 time All-Canadian Jeff Avery and Rocky Di Pietro. They too would be CFL 1rst round picks. Rocky Di Pietro retired after 14 years in the CFL with the Hamilton Tiger Cats as the league’s all-time leading pass receiver. Rocky was awarded the CFL Outstanding Canadian in 1982 and again in 1989. He was inducted into the CFL Hall of Fame in 1997. Avery went on to play for 7 years in the CFL with the Ottawa Rough Riders and would become a 2 time CFL Eastern Division All-Star and a Grey Cup Champion in 1976.

With the exception of 2 kickers, no player in the history of the CFL has had a longer career than did Miles Gorrell. Miles played for 19 years. He was a 5 time CFL Eastern Division All-Star, 2 Time CFL Outstanding Lineman finalist. Miles was inducted into the CFL Hall of Fame in 2013. Few players in CFL history own more Grey Cup rings (5) than does former Edmonton Eskimo captain Eric Upton. Eric played in the CFL for 10 years. In addition too Upton there would be other Grey Cup Champions drafted from that 1975 Gee Gees team. Neil Lumsden went on to be a 3 time Grey Cup Champion. Miles Gorrell, Jeff Avery, Doug Falconer, and Rocky Di Pietro would all go on to be Grey Cup Champions. Together, all of their names have been inscribed on the Grey Cup.


Collectively players from the 1975 team played in the CFL for 96 years. As they moved through their professional careers in the CFL, awards presented to players from the 1975 Gee Gees Team included: 

2 CFL Hall of Fame Inductees  

1 Grey Cup MVP Canadian  

2 CFL Frank M Gibson Trophies for Outstanding Rookie Eastern Division  

2 CFL Leo Dandurand Trophy Outstanding Lineman Eastern Division  

20 CFL and Divisional All-Star Selections  

23 Grey Cup Appearances  

12 Grey Cup Rings

The 1975 Gee Gees Head Coach was Don Gilbert, a former CFL great. Gilbert was awarded the Frank Tindell Award as the top collegiate coach in Canada in1975. In 2000 Don was inducted into the University of Ottawa Football Hall of Fame. In 2003 Don was inducted into the City of Buffalo Sports Hall of Fame along with Buffalo Saber great Dominik Hasek and the Buffalo Bills great running back Thurman Thomas.

The Coordinator of Intercollegiate Sports in 1975 was Bob O Billovich. In 1976 Bob became an assistant coach with the Ottawa Rough Riders, helping Ottawa win what come to be their last Grey Cup. In 1982, O'Billovich was named Head Coach of the Toronto Argonauts where went on to compile a record of 78-55-3, giving him the most wins in team history. He coached the Argos to a Grey Cup championship in 1983. Bob was named the CFL's Coach of the Year in 1983 and 1987. In 2003 O'Billovich was named the Director of Player Personnel with B.C. Lions. He won his 4th Grey Cup ring with the Lions in 2006. On December 9th, 2007 Bob was hired as the new General Manager of the Hamilton Tiger Cats.

In 2000, Bob Elliot, the great Toronto Sun sports writer for the past 35 years wrote: “Often people ask me what was the most exciting team that I ever covered? Was it the 1992 Toronto Blue Jays or the 1993 Blue Jays? Neither. The answer is the 1975 Ottawa Gee Gees”!