Football: Fantuz on Canadian talent

Saskatchewan Roughriders receiver Andy Fantuz, the 2005 Hec Crighton winner at Western, raised a good point about how the next generation of Canadian football talent is taking up the sport at a much earlier age, thanks to the growth of amateur football. Via Rider Rumblings:
"I didn’t have an opportunity to play football until ninth grade, myself. My little brother has been playing since the fourth grade or something. It’s far more like the American culture in football. They start as soon as they can run. When we’re learning how to play soccer, they’re learning how to play football and hitting each other. They get a lot more experience that way and it shows. The talent at the CIS level is getting and better each year, and it’s going to keep getting closer to the NCAA level, which in turn will help Canadian football in general. Hopefully having all these Canadians succeed in the CFL will help Football Canada in its younger stages and help it grow."
High school players look so much more polished than 10, 15 years ago. Alex Skinner, who quarterbacked the Ottawa St. Peter Knights to the OFSAA National Capital Bowl title earlier this week, ripped off one broken-play touchdown run earlier this week that you would not have seen from some CIS quarterbacks. (Actually, on that run Skinner looked like a mini-Brad Sinopoli; coincidentally St. Peter beat Peterborough Crestwood, the Ottawa QB's old school.)
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