May 3, 2013, Edmonton, AB (ISN) – An average of 50 Canada West football graduates play in the Canadian Football League every year, with many arriving through the annual Canadian College Draft in early May.
Stefan Charles and Jorgen Hus from the University of Regina Rams found interest south of the border from National Football League squads. Linden Gaydosh and Mike Edem of the five-time defending champion Calgary Dinos, along with the Rams’ Brett Jones, all cracked the top 10 on the CFL Scouting Bureau’s pre-Draft rankings.
And then there are “The Other Guys”, only this doesn’t star Will Ferrell and Mark Wahlberg. Instead, names like Charlie Power (U. of Saskatchewan), Lauren Kroeker (U. of Manitoba) and Bryan Rideout (UBC) are among the 176 names from Canada West who are eligible to be called during the seven rounds of selections on Monday, May 6th.
Power, a 21-year-old linebacker-turned-receiver from Okotoks, AB, had 25 tackles, a fumble recovery and two break-ups over two seasons (2010, 2011) and now excels as an inside receiver during 2012, making 18 catches for 231 yards and two touchdowns. Several CFL teams have expressed interest in Power ahead of Monday’s Draft.
Kroeker led the conference in sacks in 2012, with 6.5, ranked second in tackles for loss (8) and among the leaders in passes defended (5). The 6-5, 250-pound linebacker, out of Stonewall, Man., has amassed 101 total tackles, 10 sacks, nine break-ups and 18.5 tackles for loss in three season (2010-12).
Bison football head coach Brian Dobie said, “Lauren had an outstanding season in 2012 as he led the conference in sacks and was a dominant force on the defensive line at the end position. He has steadily improved throughout his years at Manitoba and would be a great asset for any CFL team.”
Rideout, a third-year cornerback who hails from Victoria, recorded 40.5 tackles and three interceptions in 2012 after missing most of 2011 dealing with a hamstring injury suffered during training camp.
“Bryan is a very intelligent player, who is a sneaky athlete,” said UBC head coach Shawn Olson of Rideout. “He has good straight-line speed and good size at 6-1, 190. He is physical in coverage and was our most consistent and best defensive player in 2012. Bryan is very driven to make it to the CFL and has been an inspiration with his ability to juggle engineering, training and football at the level he does.”
Each of the Canada West football institutions has several players who show up in the boxscore each week, quietly going about their job on the field without making headlines or reaching that elite status.
When Monday comes, only 60 Canadian football players will be announced, with four of those by Ottawa as it begins building a roster with only U.S.-based players who are returning to school next year. On Wednesday the CFL announced that a seventh round is being added, meaning the chances increase slightly for Power, Kroeker, Rideout and all of “The Other Guys” trying to make their case, complete their mission and get a shot at the professional gridiron after completing their education.
The CFL Draft starts at 12:00 p.m. Eastern Time (9:00 a.m. Pacific) and can be followed LIVE at www.cfl.ca/draft.