Glenn Steele, while at Vancouver’s Notre Dame High School, was one of the finest high school football players ever to play in British Columbia. It was very much a recruiting coup on the part of Thunderbird head coach Frank Smith that brought about the small (5’8″) but speedy running-back’s enrollment at UBC and his lining up as a starter with the 1981 Thunderbirds football team.
UBC recorded a successful seven win, one loss season in 1981, with Steele emerging as the top ball carrier in the country, gaining a record 951 yards. He was also selected to the 1981 All-Canadian team, nominated for the Hec Crighton Award as the outstanding player in the country and was the winner of the Peter Gorman Trophy as Canada’s outstanding rookie university football player.
Steele’s 1982 season could be considered one of the greatest ever experienced by a UBC athlete. He led the nation in rushing and was an easy choice as a selection to the 1982 All-Canadian football team. He was the MVP in his league, the National semi-final Atlantic Bowl and in the Vanier Cup game. He was an integral part of both the Vanier Cup and Shrum Bowl championships, set six UBC football records and was honoured as the province’s Outstanding University Athlete by Sport BC.
Looking forward to the CFL draft and a career in pro football, Steele culminated his four-year UBC athletic career by sharing with hockey player Bill Holowaty the prestigious Bobby Gaul Award – UBC’s top award for male athletes. He wrapped up his college career as a three-time All-Canadian and league rushing champion for three consecutive seasons.
Steele still holds numerous UBC football records. His three career records; most yards rushing, touchdowns rushing and total touchdowns – appear secure. His season touchdown record remains unbroken. The three individual game records he owns or shares ties him with Mark Nohra for the most game records of any UBC running back.
Following his graduation from UBC in 1985 with a B.P.E., Steele was drafted by the Winnipeg Blue Bombers for whom he played that season.