No question, Jeff Finley‘s selection by the Alouettes was the headline story yesterday for Gryphon fans. Finley deserves all the credit, congratulations, accolades and best wishes he is receiving. He put in the time and the hard work necessary to reach this point. It couldn’t have all been fun and games.
Finley redshirted his freshman year. He also had to learn a new position as he was shifted inside from d-end to d-tackle. That’s not something most guys want to do, especially when they’re a little undersized for the position. When he did dress in year two he started his very first OUA game. It was his only start of the season. The rest of the year he rotated in situationally and provided depth. That too had to be a little disappointing. I assume he had faith in what his coaches – Brian Cluff & Kevin MacNeill – were doing because he always seemed positive.
Gryphons.ca’s story: Jeff Finley selected 22nd overall in CFL Canadian Draft in record night for CIS. Some of the other draft-related storylines:
- D-Line Coach Brian Cluff deserves a lot of credit. Four years ago I raved about Finley’s high school highlight video and about his play with the Niagara Spears. [BTW one of Finley’s coaches at St Catharines-Sir Winston Churchill was Peter Partridge.] As good as those things were I don’t think four years ago anyone thought he was more than a longshot as a CFL prospect. Coach Cluff obviously recognized his potential as a DT and Finley took advantage of the teaching his coach had to offer.
- No disrespect to Jeff’s play but if he doesn’t return to Guelph for the 2014 season, it may actually be his leadership that will be most missed. The depth of the d-line is such that there won’t be a huge drop-off in talent at DT but a new leader of the unit will have to step up.
- You have to feel a little disappointed for tailback Rob Farquharson. I don’t think anyone would have told him he was a sure thing to be drafted. But being invited to the CFL’s National Combine, getting ranked as the #3 running back available, then not being picked has to hurt a little. The truth is the CFL doesn’t draft many pure running backs (Canadians) and Rob hasn’t played the role of a fullback or caught many passes in his career. His situation really isn’t any different than Nick FitzGibbon’s several years ago. Let’s hope after a stellar 2014 season he gets a shot in the CFL as a free agent.
- Rule changes and the addition of the Ottawa RedBlacks made for a record number of CIS players being picked – 59 out of a possible 65. In total 19 OUA players drafted yesterday. The OUA.ca’s story breaks down the numbers by school and has links to other teams’ sites.
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Former Gryphon Kyle Walters has earned some high praise for his work as Bombers GM at yesterday’s draft. He does a nice job explaining his picks on a Winnipeg radio station this morning – http://iphone.tsn.ca/tsnpodcasts/1290_BigShow051414KyleWalters.mp3 ….
TSN.ca Winnipeg’s Darren Bauming: WALTERS LANDS POTENTIAL IMPACT PLAYERS IN FIRST DRAFT
In his first CFL Draft at the helm of his own football team, Winnipeg Blue Bombers general manager Kyle Walters solidified his offensive line, pulled the trigger on a trade to move back into the second round, and found some value with his late picks …
Another positive story of Walters’ draft manuveuring from CFLdaily.ca – CFL GMs shine on draft day.