The Calgary Stampeders confirmed the signing of one of the best quarterback hunters in the game as they inked Ben D’Aguilar along with three other draft picks. Al Dannity gives his take.
The Stamps just got a whole lot meaner on defence. That’s my initial reaction to the formal signing of Ben D’Aguilar, a man who made sure McMaster’s Football team truly played like Marauders. The second-round draft pick had 12.5 sacks last season, a CIS record, and picked up the J.P. Metras Trophy as the most outstanding lineman in university play. Not only that but D’Aguilar drew interest from the NFL, earning a try-out with the New York Jets. As far as the CFL is concerned, this 23 year old is the real deal.
“He’s one of the most explosive kids off the edge at defensive end that we’ve ever had the privilege of working with,” McMaster head coach Stefan Ptaszek told the Calgary Herald.
“His range in the run and the pass game is excellent. He can run anything down. Very often, Ben at 235, 240 pounds has come out of testing periods as the fastest guy on our team, and given the fact there are little defensive backs and receivers all over the place that he’s outrunning, that gives you an idea of how explosive this kid can be off the edge.”
Reporters in Calgary will also surely be delighted to see the Stamps bring in a player who will give them more than the standard canned quotes. On draft day he talked about everything from his love of horses to the colour red. “When he’s nervous, his response to uncertainty is to kind of be off the wall and keep situations light. Until he gets comfortable and you see him calm and engaged person-to-person, you kind of get this whirlwind of random thoughts, which are hilarious and meant in no way to be derogatory to anybody. It’s how the young man copes with certain things,” said Ptaszek. “In interviews and stuff, we all love listening to him, because who knows what he’s going to say next.”
He may be shy off the field but this 6’2” 242lbs behemoth will do most of his talking in the back-field. In addition to D’Aguilar the Stampeders also confirmed the signings of receiver Yannick Morin-Plante, fullback Charlie Power, and offensive lineman Shane Bergman. Brett Jones, who was drafted out of the University of Regina, remains unsigned as he is weighing his options with aspirations to go to medical school.