Ottawa Rough Riders

Gerry Organ - Kicker/Punter - 1971-1977, 79-83 - Guelph

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Etobicoke Sports Hall of Fame

Gerry Organ was born in 1944 in Cheltenham, England. He emigrated with his parents and four siblings to Canada when he was 12 years old, as his father had taken a job working on the legendary Avro Arrow.

The family settled on Swordbill Drive in Etobicoke and Gerry attended Scarlett Heights Collegiate. He left school before completing grade 13 because he had been told he would never make it to university. But after four years in the working world, he decided to “prove them wrong”, and went back to Scarlett Heights to get his grade 13 diploma.

At age 21, Gerry was so much older than the other students that on the first day of school, they kept directing him to the teachers’ staff room.

Gerry worked night and day to understand things like the “new math”, and after receiving his diploma he got accepted to the University of Guelph. At U of G, Gerry studied Human Kinetics and played football "without distinction" (as he humbly describes it) for the mighty Guelph Gryphons. Despite his downplayment of his university football skills, Gerry was named to the All-Canadian team in 1969.

If he calls his university football career somewhat inauspicious,

Gerry Organ       Guelph      
  Conv     Field Goal    
Yr Team A G % A G % LG Pts
1971 Ott 32 31 97% 26 17 65% 37 92
1972 Ott 28 28 100% 50 29 58% 46 131
1973 Ott 25 25 100% 48 31 65% 47 123
1974 Ott 20 19 95% 56 36 64% 53 134
1975 Ott 38 38 100% 44 27 61% 49 124
1976 Ott 45 45 100% 19 38 ### 51 113
1977 Ott 36 36 100% 45 30 67% 52 130
1978 Did Not Play              
1979 Ott 39 38 97% 38 17 45% 51 101
1980 Ott 33 32 97% 41 26 63% 52 123
1981 Ott 28 28 100% 38 28 74% 52 122
1982 Ott 37 37 100% 33 28 85% 51 130
1983 Ott 34 34 100% 45 30 67% 50 139
Total 12 395 391 99% 483 337 70% 52 1462

 things changed once Gerry joined the Ottawa Rough Riders as a placekicker in 1971. During his illustrious 12 season CFL career, which ran from 1971-1983 Gerry set a number of franchise records. Gerry was named Rough Rider MVP in ’71 and ’72. He won three East division scoring titles including his first 3 years in the league 71-73. He was named  a CFL All-Star in 1982 when he hit on a career high 82% of field goals. He was a Grey Cup Champion on two occasions in 1973 and ’76.

 

In 1973 he was named the CFL's Most Outstanding Canadian. He played in 186 games for Ottawa over his career and a year after he left the Rough Riders, Gerry had the honour of seeing his number (#71) retired on ‘Gerry Organ Day’ at Lansdowne Park!