Commitment is a word used often by former University of Maine quarterback Marcus Wasilewski.
To him, it defines what it meant to be a member of the Black Bears’ football program, to describe his work ethic on and off the field and his senior class which won the Colonial Athletic Association football title last fall.
One can look at Wasilewski’s five-year UMaine career and find plenty of parallels between him and the word’s very meaning: the state or quality of being dedicated to a cause or activity.
For his efforts, Wasilewski on Wednesday was named the winner of the league’s Chuck Boone Leadership Award.
In 2013, he helped the Black Bears finish atop the CAA standings alone for the first time ever following a 10-2 regular season. He set school records for completions (276), passing percentage (67.5), passing yards (3,238), total offensive plays (565) and total offensive yards (3,770) and was also named to the All-CAA first team.
After Maine’s memorable 2013 season came to a close in the Football Championship Subdivision quarterfinals, the Dean’s List member and four-time Academic All-Conference selection was presented with the “M” Club Dean Smith Award presented annually to the university’s top male and female student-athlete. He then earned the CAA Student-Athlete of the Year honor with a 3.4 grade point average.
Tthe Kulpmont, Pennsylvania, native graduated cum laude in December with a degree in kinesiology and physical education and chose to stay on campus in pursuit of earning a master’s degree in his undergraduate field.
The Chuck Boone Award is presented to the league player who embodies the highest standards of leadership, integrity, teamwork and sportsmanship in his academic and athletic achievements.
“A quarterback’s job is to be a leader,” Wasilewski said during an interview with CAA Football. “There are a lot of people who could have easily deserved that award as much as I did. My main feeling was just being honored with such a prestigious award like that, to represent such a great conference for our division of football.”
While things started to come together in the classroom as his career progressed, perhaps the most difficult aspect for Wasilewski to grasp on the field was the difference in the learning curve from making the jump to becoming a captain and a leader.
He did so, capping his career with 25 touchdowns during his final year en route to becoming the second Black Bear to pass for more than 3,000 yards in a single season.