EDMONTON — Manitoba receiver Shai Ross made his name known on Monday at the Western Regional Combine, topping all participants in four of the six major tests including a phenomenal 11’3.00″ broad jump.
Thirty-nine draft hopeful prospects put their skills to the test at the Commonwealth Field House in Edmonton, with three earning an invite to the CFL National Combine presented by New Era from March 22 to 24.
Calgary running back Jeshrun Antwi and Manitoba defensive lineman Tariq LaChance are also moving on, but in the end it was a 5-foot-11 receiver out of Manitoba blowing away the competition, as Ross raced to top scores in the short shuttle (4.17) and 3-cone (6.87) while ranking second in the 40-yard dash (4.65).
Though he didn’t participate in the bench press, Ross also took home the top broad jump (11’3.00″) and vertical jump (37.5), his impressive testing helping him book a ticket to Toronto for the national showcase.
Below is the list of players that have been invited to Toronto:
After opening with height, weight, hand and arm measurements, Simon Fraser defensive lineman Rey Arcega started his day off right, leading the field with 28 reps on the bench. It was an impressive day for the entire roster on the bench press, with seven players hitting the 20-rep benchmark.
When it came time to jump, though, no one could compete with Ross, whose 11’3.00″ broad jump was a foot longer than Manitoba teammate Jesse Walker (10’2.75″). The University of Manitoba dominated the top three of the broad, with defensive lineman LaChance (9’9.75″) ranking third.
As close as he came, Ross didn’t lead the 40, however, as that distinction fell to his teammate Walker, who ran a 4.63. But the two Manitoba receivers were separated by just two one hundredths of a second, with defensive lineman Charles Nwoye of the Langley Rams finishing third with a time of 4.75.
Antwi earned a nod to national combine with his 4.22-second shuttle time and 7.19-second three-cone time, finishing third overall in both categories. His broad jump of 9’7.25” was first among his fellow running backs; he was second among running backs in both the 40-yard dash (4.9 seconds) and the vertical jump (30.5 inches), as well as third among running backs in the bench press, with 16 reps.
LaChance finished third overall in the broad jump, leaping 9’9.75”. The University of Manitoba Bison finished second among defensive linemen in the three-cone drill with a time of 7.72 and in the shuttle with 4.66; he placed third among defensive lineman with a leap of 30 inches.
Last year all three players that were selected from the Western Combine to participate in the national combine were drafted (Tanner Green drafted fourth round to Edmonton, Justin Buren drafted fifth to Hamilton, Will Watson drafted seventh round to BC).
Before heading to the national combine on March 22, the CFL will hold two more regional combines, starting on Wednesday, March 13 in Montreal and culminating March 21 in Toronto.