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BLeacheR featuRe
M
ountie pride on the gridiron
has had a strong presence since
1955. It might be the result
of a vanier Cup appearance, it could be
from multiple All-Canadian selections,
or it might appear as coach or rookie of
the year successes. Over the past season,
several individual Football Mountie
success stories have continued to instill
pride in the team and in the University.
As the season concluded, three major
announcements were made when two
Mounties made their mark on the CFL
and another was honoured as a national
university rookie of the year nominee.
Former Mountie great and two-time
Hec Crighton winner Eric Lapointe
will be inducted into the CFL Hall of
Fame in September, 12 years after he
graduated from Mount Allison; third-
year Mounties' defensive standout
Akwasi Antwi was named to the Calgary
Stampeders' roster and had a great year;
and all-star defensive tackle Jacob
LeBlanc was named the 2011 AUS Rookie
of the Year and was a nominee for CIS
Rookie of the Year. LeBlanc was also
named to the IFAF World Team (Under-
19s) and was selected to play against
Team USA at the International Bowl in
Austin, Texas in February.
Most supporters can remember when
Lapointe made his 1995 debut in a
Mountie uniform. He dazzled fans and
rewrote regional and national record
books. The electrifying running back
from Brossard, PQ, was the nation's
Rookie of the Year, a three-time All-
Canadian, and a two-time winner of
the most outstanding player award in
Canadian university football.
Lapointe went on to a successful eight-
year career in the CFL that included
a 1999 Grey Cup championship with
Hamilton. And in 2005, a nationwide fan
poll selected him as the best Canadian
university football player of all time.
Antwi, selected 26th overall in the fourth
round of the CFL Canadian draft, was
impressive during the Stampeders' pre-
season. He had a very successful year with
Calgary and was one of the mainstays of
the special teams coverage units.
Still, understanding the importance of
obtaining a degree, Antwi is currently back
at Mount Allison.
"I was ecstatic to hear I was drafted,"
he says. "It's safe to say every CIS player
dreams of playing pro, and for me to
actually get the opportunity coming from
a small school in Sackville, nB, I was really
happy and surprised. I guess even when
you think no one is looking, someone is
always looking."
LeBlanc, a past athlete of the year at J.L.
Ilsley High School in Halifax, nS, feels
Mount Allison is a great fit for him.
"The reason I came to Mount A was
mostly because of its good combination
between the school, the coaching, and the
other players. It felt like a good place to
be. Mount A is a great home away from
home... I don't think I could have made a
better choice."
LeBlanc says it was an honour to be
selected as the AUS Rookie of the Year,
and as a member of the IFAF World
Team. "Unfortunately I was not able
to represent Mount Allison in the
International Bowl this year because
I recently injured a disc in my back,"
he says. "I'm young enough though,
that hopefully I will be able to play in
another year."
LeBlanc joined four previous Mounties
who also captured this prestigious AUS
rookie award: John Hutchison (1980),
Grant Keaney (1988), Eric Lapointe
(1995), and Sebastien Roy (1999).
by Sue Seaborn
/ 27
Eric Lapointe
Photo courtesy Alouettes de Montréal
Jacob LeBlanc (left)
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