Top 10 of 2014: Kevin Cook Rushes Way into Golden Bear Football Record Book at #7

Top 10 of 2014: Kevin Cook Rushes Way into Golden Bear Football Record Book at #7
SPRINGFIELD, Mass.--It's here...the top-10 of 2014 in Western New England University Athletics. Through the month of January, we'll unveil the top 10 stories/moments played out by Western New England NCAA teams, coaches and student-athletes for the last calendar year. The countdown continues with our No. 7 entry: Kevin Cook rushes his way into the school football record books.

Cook broke Marvin Langley's career rushing record of 3,401 yards, set from 1998 to 2001, in dramatic fashion in front of the home crowd on Oct. 11 during a 34-31 win over New England Football Conference (NEFC) rival Salve Regina. He set the new WNE standard by scampering down the right sideline in front of his team's bench for a 64-yard touchdown run that gave the Golden Bears a 27-24 lead at 9:56 of the third quarter to respond to a Salve TD two possessions later. He finished the day with 119 yards on 18 carries.

The senior running back from Hamburg, N.J., ended his four-year career as the Golden Bears all-time leader with 4,094 yards rushing, 49 rushing touchdowns, 51 touchdowns, 306 total points and 854 rushing attempts while also owning single-season marks with 1,282 rushing yards, 264 attempts, 20 rushing TDs, 120 points and 20 TDs all accomplished in 2013, plus game benchmarks of four rushing TDs (tied), four TDs overall, and 24 points (tied) at Coast Guard on Oct. 5, 2013.

Cook's honors so far for his performance on the field this fall included USACollegeFootball All-America status, first-team All-NEFC Offense and Eastern College Athletic Conference (ECAC) Division III North All-Star Second Team. He also made program history in December by becoming the first Western New England player named D3football.com All-East Region as he placed on the third team. He earned the New England Football Writers' Gold Helmet NCAA Division II/III Award on Sep. 10 after leading WNE to a come-from-behind 38-34 win over city rival Springfield College in the first Pynchon SAW Game, with game highs of 98 yards and 28 carries while scoring three TDs and a two-point conversion.

The team captain ended the season with four consecutive 100-yard games and bulldozed his way to a career-high 246 yards in a 22-7 win versus Coast Guard on Oct. 4. He was ranked among the nation's best in NCAA Division III: 22nd with 14 rushing touchdowns, 24th with 1,239 rushing yards, 24th in rushing yards per game (123.9 ypg), 27th with a 9.2 scoring average and 52nd with 135.5 all-purpose yards a game. The first two categories were both second in the NEFC.

Cook was an integral piece of a WNE offense that ranked as one of the top three in the NEFC as well as the nation. The Golden Bears led the NEFC regular-season with 4,435 total yards, school-record 223 first downs, 30 rushing touchdowns and red-zone TDs at 34-for-48. The team also was second in the conference with a school-record 48 TDs, 335 points and 2,677 rushing yards.

Cook is a criminal justice-criminal investigation major.

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Top 10 Western New England Athletics Stories/Moments for 2014
#10: Football Wins Inaugural Pynchon SAW Game in Big Comeback at Springfield College
#9: Men's Golf Dominates All-Commonwealth Coast Conference Awards
#8: School-Record 131 Academic All-Conference Selections
#7: Kevin Cook Rushes Way into Football Program's Record Book