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LFA/CFL: Mexico League

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  • http://pifflespodcast.com/blog/cfl-2...be-held-monday

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    • Here, toss in the article. Little more meat in this one than the CKRM one.

      Interesting what John Gregory has to say about football in Mexico.

      University of Regina Rams head football coach Steve Bryce has some friendly advice for CFL officials attending the league’s evaluation camp of Mexican prospects his weekend: Keep an open mind.

      Mexico’s Liga de Futbol Americano Professional, an eight-team semi-pro circuit, will host a combine Sunday for players hoping to play in Canada. Forty-five players are expected to participate in drills and interviews with CFL officials at Estadio Azul, a 33,000-seat stadium in Mexico City, which has a population exceeding 20 million.

      A draft will follow the next day.

      The CFL and LFA signed a letter of intent in November during Grey Cup week in Edmonton. The non-binding agreement calls for both sides to work together on several projects, including possible CFL games in Mexico.

      For many CFL officials, Mexican football is an unknown entity. But Bryce said league GMs, coaches and personnel evaluators can expect to be surprised.

      He should know. Last year, the Rams had two Mexican-born players on their roster — kicker Aldo Galvan and offensive lineman Steven Zambrano, who was redshirted. Bryce also is talking to another two prospects from Mexico about playing in Regina this season.

      “Football is a fast-growing sport there, there’s no shortage of talent,” said Bryce. “It’s not the NFL, the NFL is the elite top league of football in the world.

      “But if you look up some of the names in the NFL who’ve been outstanding at their positions, the best offensive lineman was Anthony Munoz and the best tight end arguably was Tony Gonzalez (both Mexican-Americans).”

      Prior to arriving at Regina, Bryce spent seven years as the head coach at Etiwanda High School in Rancho Cucamonga, Calif.

      “I had many talented Mexican football players on my team,” he said. “They’re aggressive, disciplined, hard-working young men.

      “These guys are unbelievably talented, they just haven’t had exposure.”

      Regina isn’t the only Canadian university with a Mexican-born player on its football roster. Diego Alatorre, a six-foot-three, 300-pound offensive lineman, played at the University of British Columbia last year.

      “If you look at him, he’s been very good,” Bryce said.

      Joe Kapp, another Mexican-American, is a member of the Canadian Football Hall of Fame. He played quarterback for both the Calgary Stampeders (1959-60) and B.C. (1961-66), leading the Lions to two Grey Cup appearances, winning one, before joining the NFL’s Minnesota Vikings in 1967.

      Another former CFL star, quarterback Jeff Garcia, is of Mexican and Irish heritage. He began his pro career with the Stampeders (1994-98) before playing for seven NFL teams.

      Last summer in Mexico City, Mexico stunned the United States 33-6 in the semifinals of the under-18 world championship before losing 13-7 to Canada. Galvan and Zambrano both played for that Mexican squad.

      Head coach Rick Campbell and offensive co-ordinator Jaime Elizondo, a native of Mexico, will represent the Ottawa Redblacks at the combine. GM Marcel Desjardins admits he’s unsure about what to expect.

      “I’ve seen very little film and when I say very little I mean very little,” he said. “You absolutely have to go there with an open mind.

      “It’s a venture for all of us and whether it brings one player to the CFL or 10 is to be determined. It’s the first step in what will probably be a multi-pronged approach to doing things internationally. You have to start somewhere.”

      John Gregory, a former CFL head coach with Saskatchewan and Hamilton, echoed Bryce’s sentiments regarding the state of Mexican football. In 2017, Gregory served as commissioner of the National Arena League, an indoor circuit that operated with a franchise in Monterrey, Mexico.

      Gregory was pleasantly surprised with the support he received conducting a coaching clinic in Mexico earlier this year, prompting him to write a book about coaching football. Gregory was invited to talk shop ahead of the launch of the Mexico City-based International Arena Football League, which is scheduled to begin operation this year.

      “Let me tell you, there are many players there,” he said. “There’s definite potential there, for sure.

      “I was told Mexico has had high school football for 50 or 60 years and anywhere from 40 to 90 colleges have teams playing American football. I was flabbergasted. Why we haven’t known this? I don’t know.”

      Bryce said Universidad de las Américas Puebla, commonly referred to as UDLAP, has the top collegiate football program, in Mexico. In 2016, the private university located in Cholula, Puebla — roughly 100 kilometres east of Mexico City — visited the University of San Diego for an exhibition game, dropping a 49-25 decision.

      “They were much better than our players thought they were going to be,” San Diego head coach Dale Lindsey said afterwards. “I really had great admiration for them. They never quit.”

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      • Mexico has a population of nealy 130 million. If the CFL becomes an attractive option, Mexico could very well be a viable pipeline of motivated athletes. The only caveat I have is that Mexicans are typically short - don't laugh. Player personnel get twitchy about that.

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        • Originally posted by Sprout View Post
          Mexico has a population of nealy 130 million. If the CFL becomes an attractive option, Mexico could very well be a viable pipeline of motivated athletes. The only caveat I have is that Mexicans are typically short - don't laugh. Player personnel get twitchy about that.
          I dont see many of the Mayan decent playing, but there are plenty of Mexicans with European decent that would plenty tall.

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          • Originally posted by Magnum View Post

            Here, toss in the article. Little more meat in this one than the CKRM one.

            Interesting what John Gregory has to say about football in Mexico.
            I'm all for trying to find talent anywhere we can, but I find that article kind of strange. I don't think the fact that Jeff Garcia, Anthony Munoz, Joe Kapp and Tony Gonzalez are Mexican-American is in any way relevant to whether MEXICO as a country will produce good football players. It's kind of a weird argument.

            I guess if that is the argument we should be scouring Italy for coaches since Vince Lombardi was a great coach, or players since Tony Siragusa, Adam Vinatieri and Jimmy Garopollo are all Italian American.

            If the article actually used examples of players who grew up in Mexico and then became good pro players that would be fine. And if I'm wrong and Garcia, Munoz, Kapp and Gonzalez all spent their formative years in Mexico then I stand corrected.

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            • Originally posted by The Hold View Post

              I'm all for trying to find talent anywhere we can, but I find that article kind of strange. I don't think the fact that Jeff Garcia, Anthony Munoz, Joe Kapp and Tony Gonzalez are Mexican-American is in any way relevant to whether MEXICO as a country will produce good football players. It's kind of a weird argument.

              I guess if that is the argument we should be scouring Italy for coaches since Vince Lombardi was a great coach, or players since Tony Siragusa, Adam Vinatieri and Jimmy Garopollo are all Italian American.

              If the article actually used examples of players who grew up in Mexico and then became good pro players that would be fine. And if I'm wrong and Garcia, Munoz, Kapp and Gonzalez all spent their formative years in Mexico then I stand corrected.
              Going by Gonzalez' wiki bio calling him Mexican-American is a big overstatement. It says his dad's family is of Cape Verde, Jamaica and Scottish descent while his mother's family has African-American, Euro-American, Mexican-American and Native-American bloodlines. He was born in Torrence, CA and played high school ball in Huntington Beach and college for Cal.

              The rest have similar backgrounds; born in the USA, played high school in the USA and played college in the USA. Only question about any Mexican ties would be how many generations back does one need to go in their family tree before one finds someone born in Mexico.

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                • https://postmediatorontosun.files.wo...ombine-cfl.pdf

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                  • Apparently the combine is tomorrow and the draft Monday , they are having a lottery to see who picks

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                    • https://torontosun.com/sports/footba...can-talent/amp

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                      • Biggest OL is 6 2 and 330.

                        tallest guy is about 6 4.

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                        • The kicker #28 Jose Carlos Maltos Diaz was the guy who was in BC's camp last year. Apparently he also attended the NO Saints camp in 2013.
                          Last edited by Hambone; 01-12-2019, 06:17 PM.

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                          • Originally posted by Magnum View Post

                            Biggest OL is 6 2 and 330.

                            tallest guy is about 6 4.
                            Ya I know he’s huge

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                            • Going from left to right: Saskatchewan Roughriders’ assistant vice president, football operations and administration Jeremy O’Day; Toronto Argonauts’ director of football administration Catherine Raiche; Hamilton Tiger-Cats’ senior director of personnel and co-manager of football operations Drew Allemang; Ottawa Redblacks’ head coach Rick Campbell; TSN reporter Dave Naylor; the CFL’s chief marketing, digital and strategy officer Christina Litz; Ottawa offensive coordinator Jamie Elizondo; the currently unemployed John Murphy (likely with the Argos); Winnipeg Blue Bombers’ head coach Mike O’Shea; Winnipeg GM Kyle Walters; Saskatchewan offensive coordinator Stephen McAdoo; Hamilton senior director of personnel and co-manager of football operations Shawn Burke; B.C. Lions’ general manager Ed Hervey; Calgary head coach Dave Dickenson; Montreal general manager Kavis Reed; Edmonton Director of Scouting Bobby Merritt; Argonauts scout Justin Hickman; Alouettes director of national scouting Miles Gorrell.

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                              • Shouldn't affect the scouting of the college all star games too badly. The Shrine game and the NFLPA All Star game are both next weekend.

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