Jean (Gentle Giant) Gauthier
Year Inducted: 1988
Jean Gauthier was known by his team and classmates as a “Gentle Giant”; this name, however, didn’t fully apply to an offensive tackle who was a seven-time All-Star, twice at Cornwall Classical College and five times with the University of Ottawa Gee-Gees. In fact, stories seem to indicate the opposite!
Jean started his football career with the Classical College Juniors in 1963, and spent the next three years with the varsity squad competing in the Quebec Inter-Collegiate Football League, winning the Championship in 1964.
In 1966, he was Classics captain, league All-Star, and co-winner of both the Football Award and College Athlete of the Year. That same year, Jean was invited to attend the Ottawa Rough Rider Rookie Camp.
Enrolling in the University of Ottawa, he made the varsity team in his rookie year, was chosen All-Star offensive tackle and repeated over the next three years in the powerful Central Canada Inter-Collegiate Football Conference. The Gee-Gees won the Conference Championship in 1970, and went on to win the Atlantic Bowl and competed for the All-Canadian College Bowl Championship.
In 1971, Jean was picked for the Ontario University Athletic Association All-Star Team as a defensive tackle.
Jean was drafted in the first round by the Winnipeg Blue Bombers in 1971, but decided to forego professional football and became a teacher. He holds Bachelor of Arts, Bachelor of Science, and Bachelor of Education degrees from the University of Ottawa.
He went to Sudbury’s Ecole Secondaire Rayside as a teacher in 1974, and, as coach, won three Sudbury High School Championships, and one Northern Football Association title. His five-year coaching record is 42 wins and 6 losses.
Jean also played minor baseball and hockey, and was a member of the Classical College hockey team. He also played basketball in the Men’s City League and softball in the North End League.