Seven players of the Westshore Rebels football team are among the first junior football players to ever participate in a B.C. Lions evaluation camp.
“If you play really well, then you could go onto the main (B.C. Lions) camp,” said Niles Goguen, a Rebels running back. This will be Goguen’s third season with the Rebels.
The Rebels players are stoked to be invited to the camp. The opportunity to play for the Lions, “is a dream come true,” said Rebels running back Greg Morris, who has starting his second season with the team.
Kyle Daeschel, Rob Smith, Sam Narkaj, Colton Fargo and Quinn Van Gylswyk were also scheduled to attend the evaluation camp in Vancouver over Sunday and Monday. Across the province, 24 B.C. Junior Football League players have been invited for evaluation by the Lions.
“If we lose our best players to this I am actually happy,” said Rebels president Roger Wade. “These guys work really hard. They didn’t just fall out of the pickup and be really good players.
“Normally the camp is just for (Canadian Interuniversity Sport) players,” Wade continued. “The B.C. Lions find junior football is a really good place to find players.”
Last weekend the West Shore Rebels hosted its own training camps, with Rebels alumni helping the players run drills and prepare for the upcoming season starting in August.
Calgary Stampeders fullback Rob Cote was at Bear Mountain Stadium on the past weekend helping the Rebels with their game. He played for the Rebels for two years in 2005 and 2006.
“I love the Rebels, I am a Rebel for life,” he said.
Other returning Rebels alumni and current CFL players include Jesse Newman, an offensive guard for the B.C. Lions, and Timmy O’Neil, a centre for the Hamilton Tiger-Cats, as well as the the Tiger-Cats coach Tim Kearse.
“This is one of the most exciting weekends of the year,” said Rebels coach John Cardilicchia.
“I am excited about the recruits but this year I gotta say I am more excited about our veterans. Now we are lining up with a bunch of men.
“We don’t have a bunch of kids who are crawling, walking and running. We get a bunch of men who can go to war.”
See westshorerebels.com for information on the 2012 season.