Antigonish, NS— StFX X-Men football head coach Gary Waterman is pleased to announce that the 2017 varsity season will be dedicated to the memory of Ashton Dickson. The entire Xaverian family was saddened this past June with the tragic passing of Dickson, a StFX alumnus and former All-Canadian running back with the X-Men.
Ashton was a standout player, a model student-athlete, and an exemplary representative of the ‘white and blue’. He impacted many lives during his time at StFX, and this was evident by the outpouring of support and assistance that the StFX community extended to Ashton’s family in the wake of his untimely and tragic passing.
In addition to the 2017 X-Men season being dedicated in Ashton’s honour, a memorial helmet sticker will be worn on all StFX helmets, beginning with their first AUS regular season game in Halifax tonight. The sticker is football shaped and features the number eight, Dickson’s former uniform number. This sticker will serve as a reminder of Ashton’s passion for the game of football, and the many significant contributions he made to St. Francis Xavier University and the X-Men football team. Senior X-Men athletes who were teammates of Ashton placed the stickers on their current teammates’ helmets following Thursday night’s practice.
Coach Waterman comments that “Ashton Dickson has left a lasting impact on all of us at StFX and we are proud to wear his number eight sticker on our helmets in his honour. The X-Men football family misses him dearly, but we are committed to maintaining his legacy. His spirit will always be with us.”
At the X-Men home opener in Antigonish next Friday evening, September 1st, there will be a special pre-game ceremony beginning at 6:45 pm where Dickson will be remembered and honoured. StFX Athletics is happy to welcome members of the Dickson family to campus for the ceremony and the ensuing game, and will hold moment of silence in Ashton’s memory prior to kick-off.
Dickson graduated from StFX with his Bachelor of Arts degree in 2016 and spent five seasons with the X-Men football program (2011-2015). During that span he set several team and league records and his achievements, particularly rewarded for his play in his final season in 2015. That year he led the AUS in all rushing categories including carries (160), yards gained (866), yards per game (108.3), average yards per rush (5.4) and rushing touchdowns (5). He also led the league in all-purpose yards with 1320. For these feats he was honored as the AUS most valuable player and was a nominee for the prestigious Hec Creighton award which is given to the outstanding player in the nation. Dickson was also recognized as an AUS all-star (a repeat of his 2014 selection), and selected as a second team All-Canadian.
In a most memorable October 31, 2015 victory over Mount Allison, Dickson broke the AUS single game record for rushing attempts by carrying the ball 41 times. He currently sits first in the StFX record book for career rushing attempts (683) and career rushing yards (3178), and is second in career rushing touchdowns with 20. Ashton holds the second spot in the AUS career record book in attempts and is fourth overall in rushing yards.