Steve Silva Named Patriot League Player Of The Year

Nov. 23, 2005

WORCESTER, Mass. - Holy Cross senior tailback Steve Silva (East Providence, R.I.) has been selected as the Patriot League Offensive Player of the Year and Special Teams Player of the Year, it was announced today by the conference office. He becomes the first Crusader since Tom Ciaccio in 1990 to earn Offensive Player of the Year honors, and is the first Holy Cross standout to ever be named Special Teams Player of the Year.

Silva was joined on the All-Patriot League first team by senior center David Cannon (Export, Pa.) and senior tight end Luke Dugan (Maple Plain, Minn.). Four other Crusaders, junior cornerback Casey Gough (Hinsdale, Ill.), senior wide receiver Sean Gruber (Richwood, Ky.), junior punter Ryan McManaway (Ferdinand, Ind.) and junior offensive guard Andrew Schoepfer (Waterford, Conn.), earned second team All-Patriot League honors.

Silva totaled 2,134 all-purpose yards this season, rushing for 913 yards and 11 touchdowns on 189 carries, catching 54 passes for 364 yards and a score, returning 19 kickoffs for 462 yards and a touchdown, and bringing back 22 punts for 395 yards and two scores. He leads in the nation in all-purpose yards, while ranking second in punt returns, 12th in scoring, 26th in kickoff returns, 34th in receptions and 35th in rushing yards. Silva also leads the Patriot League in all-purpose yards, receptions and punt returns, while standing second in scoring and kickoff returns, and third in rushing. Silva finishes his career ranked in the Holy Cross all-time top 10 in rushing touchdowns (34, second), all-purpose yards (5,153, second), total touchdowns scored (38, third), rushing carries (615, third), points scored (228, third), rushing yards (2,646, third) and receptions (154, fourth).

Cannon earns All-Patriot League honors for the second straight year, after being a second team all-conference selection in 2004. He started all 11 games for the Crusaders at center this season, leading an offensive line which paved the way for Holy Cross to rush for 127.6 yards per game, while supplying pass protection for the Crusaders to throw for 202.2 yards per contest. Dating back to the 2003 season, Cannon started the final 32 games of his Holy Cross career at center.

Dugan finished the 2004 campaign with 28 receptions for 373 yards and a pair of touchdowns. He easily led all Patriot League tight ends in receiving this season, as no one else in the league had more than 18 catches or 163 receiving yards. He also developed into a key blocker along the offensive line which allowed Holy Cross to average 28.8 points and 329.8 total yards per game. Over the course of his Holy Cross career, Dugan totaled 45 receptions for 575 yards and five touchdowns.

Gough ranked fourth on the team with 45 total tackles this year, including 40 solo stops and three tackles for loss. He tied for the team lead with three interceptions for 53 yards and a touchdown, while ranking second on the squad with six pass breakups. In addition, Gough had nine kickoff returns for 305 yards and a touchdown, good for an average of 33.9 yards per return. Over the course of his career as a Crusader, Gough now has 93 total tackles (81 solo), four interceptions and 14 pass breakups, in addition to returning 24 kickoffs for 738 yards (30.8 yard average).

Gruber led the team with 598 receiving yards and nine receiving touchdowns this season, while averaging 16.2 yards on his 37 catches. He also ranked second on the team in scoring with 60 points, including one rushing touchdown. In addition, Gruber led the Patriot League in touchdown catches, while placing fifth in the conference in both receiving yards and scoring. He finishes his Holy Cross career with 122 receptions for 1,871 yards and 22 touchdowns. Gruber is the Crusaders' all-time leader in touchdown receptions, while ranking fifth in receiving yards and ninth in total catches.

McManaway punted 51 times for 1,837 yards this season, good for an average of 36.0 yards per punt. He placed 12 punts inside the opponents' 20-yard line, while forcing 14 fair catches and allowing the opposition to average only 7.0 yards on 19 punt returns all year. In three seasons as the Crusaders' starting punter, McManaway has now punted 155 times for 5,343 yards. He has averaged 34.5 yards per punt during his collegiate career, dropping 27 kicks inside the 20-yard line.

Schoepfer started all 11 games for the Crusaders at right guard this season, as part an offensive line which paved the way for Holy Cross to rush for 127.6 yards per game, while supplying pass protection for the Crusaders to throw for 202.2 yards per contest. He has now started 22 consecutive games for Holy Cross on the offensive line, and has started a total of 24 contests during his career as a Crusader.

Holy Cross concluded the 2005 season with an overall record of 6-5, and a 3-3 mark in the Patriot League. The Crusaders posted a winning record for the first time since 2000, and only the second time since 1992.

2005 Patriot League Football All-League Teams & Major Award Winners

Offensive Player of the Year - Steve Silva, Holy Cross
Defensive Player of the Year - Jared Nepa, Colgate
Special Teams Player of the Year - Steve Silva, Holy Cross
Rookie of the Year - Jordan Scott, Colgate
Coach of the Year - Dick Biddle, Colgate

First Team Offense
QB - Mike Saraceno, Colgate
RB - Steve Silva, Holy Cross
RB - Eric Rath, Lehigh
WR - Gerran Walker, Lehigh
WR - Brandon Stanford, Lafayette
TE - Luke Dugan, Holy Cross
OL - Adam Selmasska, Lehigh
OL - Drew Buettner, Lafayette
OL - David Cannon, Holy Cross
OL - Tom Toth, Lehigh
OL - Mike Saint Germain, Lafayette
K - Micah Clukey, Fordham

First Team Defense
DL - Royce Morgan, Lehigh
DL - Sean Conover, Bucknell
DL - Marvin Snipes, Lafayette
DL - Michael Ononibaku, Georgetown
LB - Jared Nepa, Colgate
LB - Anthony Graziani, Lehigh
LB - Maurice Bennett, Lafayette
DB - Kaloma Cardwell, Lehigh
DB - Chris Williams, Colgate
DB - Geoff Bean, Colgate
DB - Andrew Nelson, Lehigh
P - Anthony DiFino, Fordham

Second Team Offense
QB - Brad Maurer, Lafayette
RB - James Prydatko, Fordham
RB - Jordan Scott, Colgate
WR - DeWayne Long, Colgate
WR - Sean Gruber, Holy Cross
TE - Chad Walker, Lafayette
OL - Mike Sabatini, Fordham
OL - John Reese, Lehigh
OL - Jeremy Wurst, Colgate
OL - Jake Sulovski, Colgate
OL - Andrew Schoepfer, Holy Cross
K - Justin Musiek, Lehigh

Second Team Defense
DL - Jeff Galletly, Colgate
DL - Alex Buzbee, Georgetown
DL - Chris Petrone, Colgate
DL - Ed Gordon, Fordham
LB - Blake Costanzo, Lafayette
LB - Marcus Taylor, Fordham
LB - Dion Witherspoon, Lafayette
DB - Tye Murphy, Lafayette
DB - Torian Johnson, Lafayette
DB - Maurice Banks, Georgetown
DB - Cody Williams, Colgate
DB - Casey Gough, Holy Cross
P - Ryan McManaway, Holy Cross
P - Jason Leo, Lehigh

Note: Due to ties in voting, there are 14 members of the second team defense.