OTTAWA — Canadian Interuniversity Sport announced Thursday the rosters for the 10th annual East West Bowl, presented by Under Armour, which is set for Saturday, May 12, 2012 at TD Waterhouse Stadium on the campus of Western University in London, Ont.
Western is hosting the game for the fourth straight year. The contest was previously held at McMaster (2008), Laval (2007, 2006) and Wilfrid Laurier (2005, 2004, 2003). Kickoff for the 2012 edition is scheduled for 1 p.m.
In addition to the game itself, the week-long event includes daily practices, the Under Armour Combine for participating players (May 8), the CFL Free Agent Combine for players eligible to attend 2012 CFL training camps and not participating in the East West Bowl (May 9), a coaches clinic featuring presentations by eight CFL coaches (May 11-12), as well as a banquet featuring guest speaker Duane Forde from TSN (May 11).
Stefan Ptaszek, head coach of the reigning Vanier Cup champion McMaster Marauders, will lead the West team in London, while Glen Constantin, who has guided the Laval Rouge et Or to five national championships in 11 seasons at the helm, will be in charge of the East squad for the second year in a row.
Constantin will act as head coach at the Classic for the sixth time overall, including five assignments as sideline boss of the East.
“On an annual basis, the biggest showcase of Canadian university football talent – players and coaches – occurs at the CIS East West Bowl,” said Ptaszek. “To work with the brightest minds and most gifted student-athletes in our nation is a privilege and an honour. I look forward to the week of festivities and a great football game on May 12th in London.”
The East West Bowl showcases – for the most part – CIS players who will be eligible for the following year’s Canadian Football League draft.
The East side is comprised of student-athletes representing schools from the Atlantic and Quebec conferences, as well as from Queen’s, Ottawa and Toronto. The West contingent is made up of players from Canada West and from the remaining OUA universities.
Nine players who will take the field on May 12 – seven for the West and two for the East – were named CIS all-Canadians last fall, including Calgary running back Steven Lumbala, McMaster wide receiver Michael DiCroce, Regina guard Brett Jones, Regina defensive tackle Stefan Charles, McMaster offensive tackle Matthew Sewell, Calgary defensive tackle Linden Gaydosh, Windsor halfback Matt McGarva, Concordia defensive back and returner Kris Robertson, as well as Sherbrooke halfback Patrick Chénard.
DiCroce merited OUA MVP honours in 2011 after he amassed a CIS-best 904 receiving yards in eight regular season games. The 5-foot-11, 192-pound speedster was also stellar in the Marauders’ first-ever Vanier Cup win with 102 yards on seven catches.
Quarterbacking the East team at TD Waterhouse Stadium will be Mount Allison’s Jake Hotchkiss and Laval’s Tristan Grenon, while Manitoba’s Khaleal Williams is currently the only pivot listed on the West roster.
NOTES: A few players are expected to be added to the rosters in the coming weeks… The East has won the last two editions, including a 34-27 overtime victory a year ago… The West leads the all-time series 6-3… Past East West Bowl participants include Hec Crighton Trophy winners Billy Greene of UBC, Brad Sinopoli of Ottawa, Benoit Groulx of Laval, Daryl Stephenson of Windsor, Andy Fantuz of Western, Jesse Lumsden of McMaster and Tommy Denison of Queen’s… Other notables include current NFL players Cory Greenwood of Kansas City (Concordia), Joel Reinders of the New York Giants (Waterloo), Vaughn Martin of San Diego (Western) and Jon Ryan of Seattle (Regina), as well as former Calgary Dino Dan Federkeil, who earned a Super Bowl ring as a member of the Indianapolis Colts in 2007…