DANBURY, Conn. – The Eastern College Athletic Conference (ECAC) announced on Monday afternoon that Wesley College has been selected as the winner of the 2014 Division III Lambert Trophy, symbolic of the top football team in the East. Wesley, its program-record nine ECAC All-Stars, the other Lambert Award recipients, as well as Rutgers (FBS), New Hampshire (FCS) and Bloomsburg (Division II), will be honored on February 19, at the ECAC Football Awards banquet at MetLife Stadium in East Rutherford, N.J.
This marks the fifth time that the Wolverines have won the Lambert Award after Wesley finished the year at 12-2 overall. The Wolverines reached the NCAA Playoffs for the tenth-straight season and advanced to the Semifinals for the sixth-time in program history.
"Winning the Lambert Award is a tremendous honor," Wolverines Head Coach and ECAC Co-Coach of the Year Mike Drass said. "There is great football played on the East Coast and we are truly humbled to receive an award that has become synonymous with the best college football in the East."
Wesley registered a program-record nine ECAC All-Star selections, including defensive end Aamir Petrose, who was named the ECAC Co-Defensive Player of the Year. Drass' 198 victories are second among active Division III coaches and junior quarterback Joe Callahan, who named one of four finalists for the Gagliardi Trophy, was also a First Team selection.
Established in 1936 as the Lambert Trophy to recognize supremacy in Eastern college football, the award has since grown to recognize the best team in the East in the Bowl Subdivision. In 1957, the Lambert Cup was created to recognize non-Division I-A teams, and in 1966 a Division III award was added. In 1983, the Lambert family decided the Meadowlands Sports Complex would be the best organization with a sincere and involved interest in college athletics to sponsor and manage the award, and since that time, the awards have been known as the Lambert Meadowlands Awards.
To be eligible for the Lambert Meadowlands Award, a school must be located in the East or play at least half of its schedule against eligible Lambert teams. The territory includes New York, New Jersey, New England and Pennsylvania, while teams in the bordering states of Delaware, Maryland, Virginia and West Virginia and the District of Columbia qualify if at least half of their schedule features eligible teams or are Eastern College Athletic Conference member institutions.