Clemson vs. Boston College Series
O’Rourke-McFadden Trophy to the Winner
For the fifth time, Clemson and Boston College will play for a trophy. The Boston College Gridiron Club began sponsoring the O’Rourke-McFadden Trophy in 2008. Clemson won it the first season with a 27-21 victory in Boston, then won it in 2009 with a 25-7 win at Clemson. Boston College took the trophy with a hard fought 16-10 victory at Chestnut Hill in 2010, then Clemson won last year 36-14.
The trophy features a leather helmet replica of those used by Charlie O’Rourke of Boston College and Banks McFadden of Clemson, when they competed against each other in the 1940 Cotton Bowl in Dallas, TX.
In addition to the trophy presentation, the Boston College Gridiron Club will present a replica leather helmet to the MVP of the winning school. The helmet will reflect the colors of the winning team.
C.J. Spiller won the award for the 2008 game and Clemson kicker Richard Jackson won the award for the 2009 game. He kicked six field goals in the Clemson victory last year, the only kicker at the FBS level to kick six field goals in a game in 2009. Montell Harris won the award for Boston College in 2010 thanks to his 143 yards rushing and he scored the game’s only offensive touchdown. Chandler Catanzaro became the second Clemson kicker to win the honor with his five field goals in the 36-14 Clemson win in 2011.
The Boston College Gridiron Club developed the idea in order to honor the tradition at both schools and to honor the legacy of Charlie O’Rourke and Banks McFadden, who played during the leather helmet era. Clemson and Boston College are both in the Atlantic Division of the ACC and will play every year.
O’Rourke led Boston College from the quarterback position to a 26-3-2 record in his three years as the quarterback of the Eagles between 1938-40. One of those three losses was to McFadden and Clemson in the 1940 Cotton Bowl. O’Rourke had his jersey retired at Boston College and was inducted into the College Football Hall of Fame in 1972.
McFadden led the Tigers to a 9-1 record in 1939 as the starting quarterback. Regarded as the greatest all-around Clemson athlete of the 20th century, he was an All-American in football and basketball at Clemson. The 1939 football team finished 12th in the final AP poll, Clemson’s first top 20 season on record, and the win over Boston College in the Cotton Bowl was Clemson’s first bowl appearance. In the spring of 1939 he led Clemson to the Southern Conference championship in basketball. McFadden was inducted into the College Football Hall of Fame in 1959, Clemson’s first inductee.
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