John E. Theberge '83

John E. Theberge '83

The premier multi-sport athlete in his era at Bowdoin, John Theberge was a star on the school’s two highest-profile teams, captained both football and hockey his senior year, and left enduring marks in the record books of both programs.

A Maine native, Theberge graduated from Lewiston High School and Hotchkiss School as a three-sport athlete and arrived at Bowdoin in the fall of 1979. An immediate contributor on both the ice and the gridiron, Theberge closed his career as the leading passer, top rushing quarterback, and just the ninth player in school history to accumulate 100 points for the men’s ice hockey team.

In football, Theberge took the reins in the 1980 campaign, leading Bowdoin to their first outright CBB Championship in three seasons. Establishing himself as a threat with his arm as well as his legs, Theberge rushed for 322 yards and scored three touchdowns while also tossing for 449 yards and four scores. As a team, the Polar Bears slipped in the 1981 season, but the offense, led by Theberge, was not the cause. As a junior, he accounted for 1,022 yards of total offense and led the team with five touchdowns.

In a record-breaking senior season, Theberge enjoyed one of the best years in the history of Bowdoin football. Leading the team to another CBB crown, the signal-caller set career records for completions (191), yards (2,534), and touchdowns (17). His nine touchdowns that campaign marked the fourth-most in school history as the squad averaged 304 yards per game. Throwing for 1,093 yards, he also rushed for 452, rivaling Jim Soule’s 1977 campaign as one of the top seasons ever for a Bowdoin offensive player.

He was twice rewarded with First-Team All-New England honors and grabbed an Honorable Mention on the Division II/III All- American squad following his senior campaign. But Theberge’s exploits were not contained to the gridiron. A four-year contributor on the rink, he captained Sid Watson’s final squad in the 1982-83 season. He scored 56 points in his first three seasons and culminated his career with a spectacular 25-goal, 44-point 1982-83 season, notching the second-most goals by a senior and leading the squad in scoring. As such, he became the first football player in school history to join the 100-point club in ice hockey.

Born and raised in Lewiston, Maine, John has four children and now lives in Sherborn, Massachusetts, with his wife, Nan.