Josh Cory wouldn’t give up his four years on the Vincent Massey Vikings football team for anything.
The Brandonite, who played on the Vikings’ defensive line from 2000 to 2003, loved his time with the team and was known as one of the most selfless players on the squad. He won the Doug Steeves “All Heart” award for his contributions to the team in 2003 and he will be honoured again in the fall when he’s inducted into the Vikings football hall of fame.
“I was kind of a little bit shocked,” said Cory, who started in all four years. “I don’t know what to say about it. I’m pretty honoured.”
Cory helped the Vikings win the 2000 and 2001 Rural Manitoba Football League championships and was the team’s rookie of the year in 2000.
It was with the Vikings where the journeyman plumber, who works in Brandon and has two sons, said he became the person he is today.
“It instilled morals and values and (a good) work ethic,” he said.
Cory is being inducted with Tyson Snelling and the Dubois family.
Snelling was the Vikings’ running back from 2002 to 2005 and went on to play for the Minot State Beavers. The 5-foot-10 athlete switched to play cornerback, became a captain in his junior season at MSU and graduated with a degree in international business.
In 2004, Snelling returned an onside kick for a late touchdown that led to the immortal Viking phrase of “What is the most important play in football?” He received the RMFL MVP award that year and helped the Vikings upset the heavily favoured Dauphin Clippers in the final. He was Massey’s MVP in 2005 and won the team’s True Grit award in 2003.
The Dubois family — Michael, Tanis, Christopher, Carolyn, Matthew, Catherine and Michael —were involved with the Vikings from 2001 to 2011.
Matthew — the self-proclaimed Pain Train — was a defensive lineman, while Christopher and the younger Michael played receiver. All three eventually moved to quarterback and Michael won the True Grit award in 2008 and 2009, the only player to win it two years in a row.
Carolyn and Catherine acted as team statisticians, while Tanis and the elder Michael were dubbed the unofficial owners of the Vikings and helped fundraise more than $15,000 for the program.
Although the ceremony is a few months away, Cory can’t wait to reconnect with Snelling and the Dubois family.
“I haven’t seen Snelling in a long time and the Dubois (family),” he said. “… (It’s like) those guys never left and you’ll just pick up where you left off.”
Republished from the Brandon Sun print edition June 29, 2012