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Inspiring Canadians - In Sport and Life

Honoured Member

DOUG FLUTIE

Inducted in 2007

Member Details

Date of Birth: October 23, 1962
Place of Birth: Manchester, Maryland
Sport: Football
Member Category: Athlete

Career Highlights

1984

Heisman Trophy as Most Outstanding Collegiate Football Player

1991

Threw for a record 6,619 yards with the BC Lions

1991-1994, 1996, 1997

Six CFL Most Outstanding Player awards

1992, 1996, 1997

Grey Cup (Calgary Stampeders, Toronto Argos, Toronto Argos) Most Valuable Player in all three victories

2006

Ranked #1 on list of Top 50 CFL Players

Honoured Member DOUG FLUTIE
Inspire

Story

His magic first manifested itself in mathematics when, as a child, nicknamed "The Wee One," he calculated his mother's groceries within five cents of the final total before they got to the checkout. His innate ability to tabulate large totals was apropos for a man who would go on to amass 10,579 passing yards in college and 58,464 yards as a pro. However, these gargantuan numbers don't tell the story. It was his play that made Doug Flutie spellbinding. To watch Doug play football one might think, "My, this guy is lucky." But after he replicated his heroics play after play and game after game, it was clear that his clairvoyant improvisation had little to do with good fortune. Signs of his athletic brilliance were apparent in high school, but it was in 1981 at Boston College where "Flutie magic" first took centre stage. There he embarked upon one of the most celebrated college careers ever. He passed for more yards than anyone in NCAA history and, in fact, no pass in college football is more famous than the last one that left his hand at the Orange Bowl in 1984. This "Hail Mary" toss of 48 yards with time expired gave Boston College a 47-45 win over Miami. Doug won the Heisman Trophy that year as the NCAA's best player. Doug's pro career began more modestly. Despite being productive, he was mentioned more for his lack of size than his tremendous skill. Yet his early years only set the stage for one of the most complete displays of individual dominance team sports has ever known. If Boston College was Doug's first big stage, it follows that the Canadian Football League was his greatest. In 1991, in only his second year in the CFL, Doug completed 466 passes for 6,619 yards, both records that have yet to be broken. He was named the league's most outstanding player an unprecedented six times in the next seven years. My most poignant memory of Doug came as teammates with the Argos in 1997. The score was tied late in the fourth quarter of the Eastern final against Montreal and he came to me and said, "Pinner, when we get the ball back it is you and me all the way down the field." The supreme confidence with which he spoke was captivating, riveting... magical. We got the ball back on our 23-yard line and drove down the field for the winning touchdown that would ultimately propel us to back-to-back championships. There are many elements that define "Flutie magic," but none greater than his love for family. His pride in his long-time bride, Laurie, the passion he exhibits recounting his daughter, Lexi's soccer games, and the genuine affection he shares in little Dougie's daily victories in his battle with autism are all part of his greatness. The U.S. is still home, but Canada is his playground. Boston is his city but Earl Grey is his tea. Opportunity was his ticket, and Canada's Sports Hall of Fame was his destination. Doug Flutie - one of the few men for whom the noun hero is an understatement. (Written by Michael "Pinball" Clemons. Michael played for the Toronto Argonauts from 1989 to 2000.)


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