TORONTO — CFL Draft prospect Robbie Smith has been preparing for his shot at making the pros since he started his university career.
The defensive lineman played behind Edmonton Eskimos defensive end Kwaku Boateng at Wilfrid Laurier, learning as much as he could while the pair were on the team together.
“I remember when I started playing football at Laurier, I was behind Kwaku (Boateng),” said Smith. “And my defensive line coach at the time told me to just look at everything that he does and copy what he does.”
Smith did just that, becoming one of the top prospects in the country ahead of the CFL Draft on May 2.
Smith had an impressive CFL Combine presented by New Era weekend in March. He put up 23 reps on the bench press and jumped 36″ in the vertical jump, the highest for a defensive lineman since Stefan Charles in 2013. He also finished with the fastest 40-yard dash (4.78 seconds) and 3-cone (7.34 seconds) of all defensive lineman while also posting the sixth-best broad jump (10’1.13″). The six-foot-two, 242-pounder also finished the shuttle with a time of 4.46 seconds.
“What sets me apart is my athleticism and my ability to play different roles and be versatile,” said Smith, when asked what sets him apart in this year’s draft class. “I’m a jack of all trades and I can do a lot.”
“A CFL team should draft me because I am a hard worker,” Smith continued. “I think I’m a great athlete. I think I’m someone that will always be on time and will always be competing for a spot. Never someone that you’ll have to worry about and someone that’s definitely going to get it done.”
Just like many Canadian prospects, Smith grew up watching the CFL and says it would be a dream come true to play with a team somewhere in the country.
“It would be a dream to play in the CFL,” he said. “Being a kid and watching the CFL when you were younger to actually be on the stage and being this close, (getting drafted) would be amazing.”