For the second consecutive year, Jon Cornish has been named the Calgary Booster Club’s male athlete of the year. The announcement was made at McMahon Stadium on Wednesday.
The 28-year-old running back along with the female athlete of the year — bobsledder Kaillie Humphries — will officially be honoured at Annual Sportsman of the Year Dinner on Apr. 16 at the BMO Centre.
It was a banner year for Cornish in 2012. In his first full season as a starter, Cornish accumulated 1,457 yards and he won the CFL rushing title, breaking Normie Kwong’s 56-year-old single-season rushing record for Canadians in the process.
The performance led to Cornish being named the CFL’s Most Outstanding Canadian and West Division finalist as the league’s Most Outstanding Player. He was a member of the West Division, CFL and CFL Players’ Association all-star teams.
Cornish shared the league lead with 11 rushing touchdowns and was also a threat in the passing game as he had 38 catches for 338 yards and two scores. Cornish was named the CFL’s Canadian player of the month in August, September and October/November. He was also voted Canadian player of the week on nine occasions and offensive player of the week once.
The Newminster, B.C., native, who now lives in Calgary year-round, had four games during the regular season in which he ran for more than 150 yards. In the post-season, he surpassed the 100-yard milestone in both the West Division semifinal and the West Division final.
Cornish is one of 13 Stampeders to be named the Calgary Booster Club’s male athlete of the year and he is the first multiple winner. The other winners were: Don Luzzi (1959), Harvie Wylie (1963), Lovell Coleman (1965), Wayne Harris (1967), John Helton (1973), Willie Burden (1976), James Sykes (1981), Rick Johnson (1987), Dave Sapunjis (1994), Jeff Garcia (1999), Dave Dickenson (2001) and Henry Burris (2009).
The award was started by the Calgary Press-Radio-TV Sports Club in 1958 as the Scott Mamini Award and was presented annually to the city’s top athlete chosen by local media. The format continued until 1987, at which time the award evolved into the Male Athlete of the Year.