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Top university football players face off at East-West Bowl in Waterloo, Ont.


Canada’s top university football athletes gathered on the gridiron Saturday to show off their skills in the East-West Bowl at the University of Waterloo.

The week-long event gives players, who are eligible for the CFL draft, a chance to grab the attention of coaches, general managers and scouts.

“This kind of starts their evaluation process with the CFL,” explained Chris Bertoia, the head coach and manager of football operations for UW. “It's a big game, big opportunity for these young men to show their stuff as they prepare for their senior season.”

The East-West Bowl features players from each of the 27 U Sports football programs.

Three local players were picked to play for Team West: Raidan Thorne of Kitchener, Ont. and Josh Reitveld of Brantford, Ont. who both play for Wilfrid Laurier University, as well as James Hinsperger of Waterloo, Ont. who plays for UW.

Joining them on Team West were: Taylor Elgersma, Ethan Jordan, Chisanem Nsitem and Johari Hastings from Laurier; Anthony Miller, Daniel Dove, Kaeden Jajal, and Anesu Latmore from UW; plus Vyshonne Janusas, Daniel Hocevar and Ethan Pyle from the University of Guelph.

“East-West is where we get to showcase our skills to the scouts and the CFL, the league that we all dream to get to,” said Miller, a UW running back. “I'm really just focused on trying to show my skill and show the scouts I'm someone that, when it's time, we're going to remember him and maybe take a chance on him.”

The head coaches for Saturday’s game were the 2023 Vanier Cup finalists: Université de Montréal Carabins bench boss Marco Iadeluca for Team East, and UBC Thunderbirds head coach Blake Nill for Team West.

“We've been working so hard all week installing new plays, getting them ready for today,” added Taylor MacIntyre, receiver coach for Team West. “[This] is a huge opportunity for them just to get out and do what they do best. You know, they've been so successful to get here to this point. So it's just a matter of continuing all their habits, all their progression of what got them to this point.”

Coach’s clinics were also held May 10 and May 11 at UW’s Warrior Field. Top Stories

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