From Guelph to the CFL

News from the CFL …  last month Guelph coaches learned via email that their current safety, Jordan Duncan, was officially invited to the 2012 CFL Evaluation Camp.  The camp will take place in Toronto in March.   The 2012 CFL draft will take place later in the spring.

If he wasn’t already on their radar Duncan made sure that CFL teams took notice of him at the 2011 East-West Bowl & Combine.  From an  East-West Bowl post:

The official game stats credit DB Jordan Duncan with four solo tackles, tied for third on the West squad.  In a game without any interceptions Duncan made perhaps the nicest defensive play on a pass with a big pass break-up in the 1st half.

In the combine portion, …  Jordan Duncan recorded a shuttle time of 4.182 sec.  If he had recorded that time at the 2011 CFL E-Camp he would have been tied for 6th.  Four of the six players who had an equal or better time were drafted in the first two rounds of last week’s CFL draft.  The short shuttle tests an athlete’s lateral quickness and explosion over short distances. 

Duncan has been the team’s 2nd leading tackler each of the past two seasons.  He is 7th all-time at Guelph in solo tackles, plus 170 total tackles, 9 career interceptions and 12 pass break-ups.

UPDATE:  Duncan has a new career highlight video (below) and 2011 Special Teams hilite package here .  While the first is impressive its the second one that may have more to do with him getting drafted.

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Guelph has been well represented at recent E-camps.  Last year two Gryphons – Jedd Gardner & James Savoie – were invited.  In 2010, a total of 6 Gryphons were invited – Justin Dunk, Adam Dunk, Rob Maver, Ryan Bomben, Nick FitzGibbon & Grant MacDonald.  To put that in perspective, that was by far the most of any CIS school.  And the other 9 OUA teams sent a total of 21 players. 

Several CFL teams sent scouts to Guelph this season to look at Duncan and several other pro prospects.  I would have to think that would include Michael Millar and Saxon Lindsey who also performed well at the 2011 East-West Bowl game and combine.  In the preseason TSN’s Duane Forde listed 2nd year Gryphon DT/DE Kalven Seilis as a top prospect for the 2013 draft.

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Two Guelph graduates are currently coaching in the CFL – Kyle Walters & Mike O’Shea.  Three Guelph grads were on CFL player rosters this season – Maver, Bomben & FitzGibbon.  Justin Dunk worked in the Hamilton Tiger-Cats front office this season and continues to write for CFL.ca.  Chris Rossetti worked as a communications intern with the Toronto Argonauts this summer.

The current Guelph coaching staff also has plenty of connections to the CFL.  Head Coach Stuart Lang is well known for his eight seasons and five Grey Cup rings with the Edmonton Eskimos.  Defensive backs coach Marcello Simmons spent a combined 13 years in the CFL as a player and a coach. Simmons has three Grey Cup rings.  Two other current Gryphon coaches attended CFL training camps after their CIS careers – Brian Cluff and Kevin MacNeill.  The Gryphon’s Strength & Conditioning Consultant is also a CFL veteran who is still well connected and highly respected in the league.

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One Response to From Guelph to the CFL

  1. 2012 could be a year of opportunity for young Canadian players in the CFL. Not just Duncan but I expect Gardner and Savoie will be in CFL training camps.

    The CFL will “increase the size of the practice roster from a maximum of seven (which had to include a Canadian draft choice from the same year) to 10. At least two of the three new spots to the PR must be held by non-imports, making a minimum of three Canadians on the 10-man practice roster”.

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