Making North Central College football history
The NCAA recognized Rutter's historic season with an invitation to play in the Hula Bowl all-star game, an exhibition featuring top players from all divisions of college football held at Aloha Stadium in Honolulu, Hawaii. Rutter was the only Division III player to appear in the game and threw for the lone touchdown scored by Team Aina, a 28-yard connection with Michael Dean of Idaho State University. Rutter got to play under the guidance of Team Aina head coach Mike Smith, former head coach of the NFL's Atlanta Falcons.
The North Central quarterback was a semifinalist for the Gagliardi Trophy for the second straight season. He ranked second nationwide in passing yards, touchdown passes and passing efficiency while sitting third in completion percentage. He has started every one of the Cardinals’ games the past four seasons and owns a 44-7 career record as starting quarterback.
“He’s really a special soul,” said North Central head football coach Jeff Thorne. “Nobody deserves it more than him. He’s been such a great leader, a great teammate and just a great human being.“
During his career, Rutter has lead North Central to three CCIW championships and four consecutive appearances in the Division III national playoffs. He is the active career leader in all divisions of college football—and the all-time leader in Division III—with a North Central-record 14,258 passing yards. He also owns the Cardinals’ career records for completions and touchdown passes. In North Central’s national quarterfinal victory over Delaware Valley University, Rutter established a new Division III career record by throwing for at least 200 yards for the 44th time.