14 CIS standouts crack initial Top-20 prospect list for 2017 CFL draft

Kwaku Boateng
TORONTO (CIS) – Kwaku Boateng, a defensive lineman from Wilfrid Laurier University, is the top-ranked CIS player on the initial prospect list released by the CFL’s Scouting Bureau in advance of the league’s 2017 Canadian Draft.
No less than 14 CIS standouts cracked the first Top-20 rankings of the season, including two selections apiece for Laurier, Calgary, Carleton and Laval.
Boateng, a 6-foot-2, 250-pound senior in his fourth campaign with the Golden Hawks, is the reigning OUA conference down lineman of the year and was also named a second-team all-Canadian in 2015 after he racked up nine tackles for a loss – including four quarterback sacks – in eight league games. The accounting student is once again terrorizing opposing offences this fall with three sacks and eight total tackles in Laurier’s first two contests.
“This is quite the honour for Kwaku and our football team to have him as the top-ranked CIS prospect,” said Michael Faulds, head coach of the nationally seventh-ranked Golden Hawks. “None of us in the program are surprised because we have witnessed his work ethic in everything he does since he stepped on our campus four years ago. Kwaku has the quickest get-off and is tenacious against the run and pass. More importantly he is a well-rounded individual who excels on the field and in the classroom, as witnessed by his multiple CIS Academic All-Canadian awards. He will make any team at the next level better.”
The only player ranked higher than Boateng on the Scouting Bureau’s September list is Montreal native Justin Senior, a 6-foot-5, 310-pound offensive lineman from Mississippi State in the NCAA.
The other CIS stars named to the initial Top 20 are McMaster receiver Danny Vandervoort (No. 4), former Calgary receiver Rashaun Simonise (No. 7), Carleton receiver Nate Behar (No. 8), McGill offensive lineman Qadr Spooner (No. 9), Laval tight end Antony Auclair (No. 10), Manitoba offensive lineman Geoff Gray (No. 11), Calgary defensive back Robert Woodson (No. 12), Montreal defensive lineman Junior Luke (No. 13), Laurier linebacker Nakas Onyeka (No. 16), StFX defensive lineman Kay Okafor (No. 17), Laval offensive lineman Jean-Simon Roy (No. 18), Carleton offensive lineman Kwabena Asare (No. 19) and Toronto linebacker/defensive lineman Corey Williams (No. 20).
Last May, Laval offensive lineman Philippe Gagnon was the first CIS player selected in the CFL Canadian Draft when the Montreal Alouettes called his name at No. 2. Gagnon had been ranked 15th, 13th and ninth, respectively, on the three prospect lists released over the course of the season.
Fifty-three CIS players were selected in the 2016 CFL Draft (out of 70 total picks), including four in the first round.
NOTE: The CFL Scouting Bureau releases its rankings three times each year: in September, December and April. The Bureau is comprised of CFL scouts, player personnel directors and general managers from the league’s nine teams.

  Rank   Name                           Pos.     University                   Hometown                  Ht.       Wt.                 
1.         Justin Senior                OL       Mississippi State          Montreal, Que.                        6-5       310
2.         Kwaku Boateng          DL       Laurier                         Milton, Ont.                 6-2       250
3.         Akeel Lynch                 RB        Nevada                                    Toronto, Ont.               5-11     220
4.         Danny Vandervoort   REC     McMaster                     Barrie, Ont.                  6-2       204
5.         Eli Ankou                     DL       UCLA                           Ottawa, Ont.                6-3       325
6.         Christophe Mulumba   LB        Maine                          Laval, Que.                  6-1       245
7.         Rashaun Simonise       REC     Calgary                                    Vancouver, B.C.          6-5       190
8.         Nate Behar                 REC     Carleton                       London, Ont.               6-0       195
9.         Qadr Spooner                         OL       McGill                         Brossard, Que.             6-4       314
10.       Antony Auclair           TE        Laval                           Notre-Dame-des-Pins, Que.   6-6       254
11.       Geoff Gray                 OL       Manitoba                     Winnipeg, Man.                       6-6       310
12.       Robert Woodson        DB       Calgary                                    Calgary, Alta.               5-11     197
13.       Junior Luke                DL       Montreal                      Montreal, Que.             6-3       288
14.       Faith Ekakitie              DL       Iowa                            Brampton, Ont.                        6-3       290
15.       Mason Woods              OL       Idaho                           Port Coquitlam, B.C.   6-9       320
16.       Nakas Onyeka                        LB       Laurier                         Brampton, Ont.                        6-0       210
17.       Kay Okafor                DL       StFX                            Enugu, Nigeria             6-4       275
18.       Jean-Simon Roy         OL       Laval                           Quebec City, Que.       6-3       285
19.       Kwabena Asare          OL       Carleton                       Brampton, Ont.                        6-8       296
20.       Corey Williams           LB/DL Toronto                                    Mississauga, Ont.         6-1       235
* Simonise played for the University of Calgary from 2013-2015 but is not on the Dinos’ 2016 roster.

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