Hamilton – As the 2014 Canadian Football League (CFL) season gets underway tonight in Winnipeg, Ontario University Athletics (OUA) will be proudly represented across the league this season by 57 former student-athletes, up from 45 at the beginning of last season.
Not only is there an increase in the overall number of former OUA players, but each club features at least four players compared to two from the previous season.
The Toronto Argonauts and Saskatchewan Roughriders continue to rely heavily on OUA, as each team will feature a league-high ten players joining the Boatmen and Riderville, respectively.
Last season, Toronto (12) and Saskatchewan (8) were again among the leaders in OUA developed players and they were cornerstones in their recent Grey Cup championships in 2012 and 2013.
The Hamilton Tiger-Cats will send out eight former OUA players when they face the Roughriders on Sunday, including 2014 CFL Canadian Draft 1st round pick Beau Landry (LB, Western).
Link: Landry, Ainsworth, Circelli, and Marshall selected in CFL Draft: http://westernmustangs.ca/news/2014/5/13/FB_0513145004.aspx
Fresh off another CIS First Team All-Canadian award, Landry was the highest drafted OUA player this year when the Tiger Cats selected him 8th overall. In 8 games for the Mustangs, Landry lead the team with 46 tackles, two sacks and two forced fumbles.
Montreal Alouettes will also see their OUA content on the rise from last year as the team will include six former players. Among them will be Andrew Lue (DB, Queen's) who the Als took with their 1st selection, 11th overall in the 2nd round.
Link: Lue goes to Alouettes, Macdonell to REDBLACKS in 2nd round of CFL Draft as four Gaels get selected: http://gogaelsgo.com/news/2014/5/13/FB_0513143052.aspx
Lue, the second OUA player selected in the draft, finished last year with a flurry, recording 10 tackles and one interception in two playoff games, on his way to his second CIS All Canadian selection.
Alberta will continue to rely on former OUA players as the Calgary Stampeders (6) and Edmonton Eskimos (5) welcome back some familiar faces.
Brad Sinopoli (WR, Ottawa), Rob Maver (P, Guelph), Ben D'Aguilar (DL, McMaster), Yannick Carter (LB, Wilfrid Laurier) and Shane Bergman (OL, Western) will return for another season with the Stamps, while newcomer Akeem Whonder (LB, Windsor) also joins the squad.
Further North, Shamawd Chambers (WR, Wilfrid Laurier) and Matthew O'Donnell (OL, Queen's) are back in the mix for the Esks while rookies Aaron Milton (RB, Toronto) and Mike Dubuisson (DB, Windsor) hope to make an impact this season.
The BC Lions, Winnipeg Blue Bombers and Ottawa REDBLACKS each will feature 4 former OUA players.
Each OUA team is represented by at least two players on their CFL roster. Western University again leads the way with 13 former Mustangs taking to the gridiron this season. Following Western, McMaster with nine; Queen's with seven; Guelph and Laurier tied with 6; Windsor with five; York, Waterloo, Ottawa all with three and two players representing Toronto.
The 2014 OUA Football season kicks off September 1st and you can catch the action live on OUA.tv - Click here to see the 2014 OUA football schedule.
** Notes: Totals as of 4:00 PM ET on Thursday, June 26th. Does not include players currently listed on suspended lists.**
|17||Chambers, Shamawd||WR||Wilfrid Laurier|
|48||Carter, Yannick||LB||Wilfrid Laurier|
|83||Athony, Alex||WR||Wilfrid Laurier|
|Winnipeg Blue Bombers|
|31||Dell, Isaac||FB||Wilfrid Laurier|
|54||Van Zeyl, Chris||T||McMaster|
|8||Herbert, Shane||DB||Wilfrid Laurier|
|44||Phillips, Justin||DL||Wilfrid Laurier|