In his fifth and final season, uOttawa Gee-Gees quarterback Derek Wendel (Belleville, Ont.) has been named Ontario University Athletics (OUA) Most Valuable Player and the conference nominee for U Sport Hec Crighton Trophy.
Wendel, a fifth-year philosophy major, for a second consecutive season set new OUA single season attempts and completions records, completing 232 of 347 attempts for 2936 yards, which ranks seventh all-time on the U Sports single season passing yards list.
Starting all eight games for uOttawa, the Belleville, Ont. native also finished first in the conference in completion percentage (66.9), yards per game (367) and touchdowns (22). With Wendel under centre, the Gee-Gees led OUA with a red zone percentage of 91%, while passing for 135 1st downs during the regular season.
After throwing 8863 yards over his five seasons in the garnet and grey, Wendel ends his career as the Gee-Gees second leading passer of all-time, trailing only former uOttawa quarterback Josh Sacobie, while his 67 career touchdown passes ranks him fifth all-time in OUA history.
Wendel, who earlier this week was named an OUA first-team all-star for the first time in his career, is the first Gee-Gees player to be named Most Valuable Player since former quarterback turned Ottawa REDBLACKS receiver Brad Sinopoli earned the honours following the 2010 season. He also becomes only the fourth different Gee-Gees player to win the award, joining the aforementioned Sinopoli (2010) and Sacobie (2007), as well as running back Mike Murphy (1976) and three-time MVP Neil Lumsden (1972-1973, 1975).
Lumsden was on hand at the awards ceremony on Thursday morning in Burlington to present the award to Wendel.