Congratulations to John Rush and Jacob Scarfone on making CFL rosters for the first time!
Linebacker-turned-fullback Rush made the active roster of the Winnipeg Blue Bombers in his second training camp with the team. The Bombers have a Week 1 bye, thus Rush won’t play in his first CFL regular season game until July 1 in Regina.
Receiver Scarfone was added to the Hamilton Tiger-Cats practice roster. I haven’t heard much about his recent “health” status but Scarfone hurt his ankle early in training camp. He may in fact be placed on the Injured List in the coming days.
* * *
The addition of Rush and Scarfone, minus Jake Piotrowski who retired after a 3-year career with the Montreal Alouettes, means there are now 10 Gryphons on CFL rosters. Ryan Bomben, Rob Maver, Cam Thorn, Alex Charette, Jake Reinhart, Jeff Finley, Cam Walker and Curtis Newton are the others.
That may or may not be an all-time high. It is definitely the most we’ve seen in the last 20 years.
Unfortunately, the news was not as positive for Johnny Augustine, Ian Marouf and Ryan Nieuwesteeg. The trio did not make the final rosters of the Eskimos, Blue Bombers and Argonauts respectively.
Augustine did make a positive impression during training camp in Edmonton according to this Global News report.
The Eskimos reached out to him and signed him as a free agent on May 15 and the 5’8″ 202 pounder, who has been moved from tail back to full back, is in Eskimos camp and making an impression.
“Johnny came in as a raw, raw full back” said running backs coach Tim Prinsen
“He came in with the right attitude wanting to do everything in his power to become the player we asked him to be. It was probably overwhelming at first but he stuck his nose to the grindstone and worked and worked and worked and has continued to work and ask all the right questions.
“It’s been really neat to see his progression from the start of camp to now. He is a totally different guy”
Augustine has previously said he was 100% committed to returning to Guelph if he didn’t stick in the CFL. The Gryphons don’t have many 5th year players coming back in 2017. Augustine’s presence could have a large impact on the team. I would love to see him have a John Rush-type final season before getting another shot in the CFL.
* * *
You can watch five of those former Gryphon players in action next Sunday, June 25 by joining the Friends of Gryphon Football at Toronto’s BMO Field. The Friends of Gryphon Football, in conjunction with the Parents of Players, are hosting their first CFL Game & Tailgate Party. The game is the season opener for the Toronto Argonauts and the Hamilton Tiger-Cats.
Buy your tickets here.