by RENALDO DORSETT
In an effort to further aide the development of American football in the Bahamas, pro gridiron star Karl McCartney will host another in his series of clinics and scouting combines for local enthusiasts.
McCartney, along with the coaching staff of the Edmonton Eskimos will host a three-day schedule of events beneficial to coaches and players.
The list of events begins tonight from 7pm-9pm at the Crab House Collins Avenue where they will host a coaching seminar.
On Friday, 7pm-9pm, also at the Crab House, the group will conduct a seminar teaching players the classroom aspects of basic football fundamentals.
On Saturday, there will be a scouting combine for players aged 16-15, hosted at the Roscow Davies Soccer Field at the Blue Hills Sporting Complex, 2pm-5pm.
McCartney appeared on 100 Jamz yesterday with host JJ McKenzie to continue his rounds of promotion for the event, along with Eskimos head coach Chris Jones and quarterbacks coach Jarious Jackson.
“The CFL, behind the NFL is the highest league, its almost like a farm league now so you are learning from some of the best football talent and minds that are out there,” McCartney said, “We just want people show up and be ready to learn and ready to compete.”
After a career at Notre Dame, Jackson played professionally in the CFL for seven seasons with the BC Lions and Toronto Argonauts where he won three Grey Cup championships in 2006, 2011, and 2012. He has also played professionally for the Denver Broncos where he was drafted 214th overall in the 2000 NFL Draft.
“We basically have come down here to help educate the Bahamian people in football and what it’s about, whether it be coaching or playing, teaching them fundamentals, teaching them techniques and how to go about doing the right thing, whether its catching, kicking or whatever it may be. We know that is talent down here. You don’t have to always go through the route of going to the US to make it,” Jackson said, “There are first round draft picks in the NFL that are playing in the CFL right now and there are guys from the CFL that are stars in the NFL. One name you might know is Cameron Wake of the Miami Dolphins. he came up, played for BC for two years and now everyone is seeing what he is doing in the NFL.”
Jones set to begin his second season as Eskimos head coach, said he hopes to find some hidden gems at this weekend’s combine.
“On Saturday we will be testing some guys and looking at different players down here. We know there is talent down here, Karl’s not the only guy that can run,” he said, “We want to take a look at some of these guys and hopefully we can find that hidden gem that can hopefully find a way into our system.”
McCartney, 27, was a member of Calgary Stampeders 102nd Grey Cup winning team last November.
The Stampeders were claimed champions of the Canadian Football League with a 20-16 win over the Hamilton Tiger-Cats last night at the BC Place in Vancouver, British Columbia.
McCartney was selected in the fifth round (37th overall) of the 2010 CFL Canadian Draft and signed on May 20, 2010.
In his rookie campaign he was an immediate force on special teams as he led the Stampeders with 19 special-teams tackles.
He finished the season with eight defensive tackles, including one tackle for loss.
In his second league season, McCartney was limited by injury to seven regular-season appearances but still managed to top his previous total with 13 tackles while also tying for second on the squad with three tackles for loss.
In year three, McCartney played in all 18 regular-season games, both playoff contests and the Grey Cup. He led the team for a second time in his career as he made 23 special-teams tackles, third in the league. He also had nine tackles and a sack on defence.
Last season he played in 11 games and had 11 defensive tackles, including a tackle for loss, a sack, a fumble recovery, 14 special-teams tackles and a knockdown.