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BC Lions QB Nathan Rourke Talks Michael Reilly’s Surprise Retirement, Being Named Starter & More

The Markcast recently talked with the new starting QB of the BC Lions Nathan Rourke. They talk about being named the starter, Michael Reilly’s retirement, the BC Lions offseason, being a Canadian QB and more.

Rourke talks about the craziness of CFL Free agency and how life has changed now that he is QB1 for the BC Lions.

“Yeah, it’s been good. Not too much has changed. Just gotten a lot of more people who want to talk it to me. So that’s the only real adjustment for it. But it’s been exciting news with free agency, you’re starting to kind of see the pieces fall into place and guys are getting excited texting with some of the guys and they’re getting excited as well. So really for us, May can’t come soon enough. And we’re looking forward to getting started.”

He talks about what it was like to be named the starter in 2022 and how he found out.

“Coach Campbell. One of the great things about him is that he tries to be super authentic and transparent, and he was that way last year. Throughout the kind of the weeks of the uncertainty of Mike’s injury and not knowing whether he would start or not, he was as transparent as he could be.

I really appreciate that about him. And this was no different. He called me on the weekend, said that Mike was looking at making a decision sometime in the next week to keep me posted, and then on Monday had a conversation and let me know what he was thinking and how they are moving forward. So that’s really how I found out reactions to that.”

Rourke talks about how he wasn’t expecting Michael Reilly to retire.

“Yeah, it’s still super surreal. I honestly wasn’t expecting it. I was talking with my family members and whatnot and we kind of try to understand where Mike was going to go and what was he going to do and hadn’t had any communication.

I really had no idea. Everyone that I talk to with the organization really didn’t think that they had any kind of clue. So I wasn’t really sure what to think of it and was then even more surprised that Coach Campbell made the decision that they were going to name me the starter right then and there.

Obviously from that moment on, it was like, all right… this is what we got to do and this is how it is… kind of hit the ground running with that. I’m super excited. This is what I’ve wanted since I’ve gotten here. Obviously, you want to be the guy as soon as you step on the field or with a new organization. I love the team here. I love the organization, the coaching staff, the players. And it’s been really fun to have a full off season and knowing going into the camp this early, knowing that this is the confidence that the organization has in me and I’m looking forward to hitting the field and getting after it and showing that they made the right decision”

He talks about being a Canadian QB.

“Yeah, I think obviously very proud of that. All the time that I spent down in the States playing football, that’s always what kind of separated me from the next guy was being Canadian. And I always embraced that. I was always been very proud to have come from the path that I’ve taken.”

He talks about winning the Jon Cornish Trophy twice as the most outstanding Canadian player in NCAA Football, Canadian players coming up in the NCAA, the BC Lions off-season signings, and more.

You can listen to the full interview here.

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Mark Perry Editor
Mark Perry is the founder and editor of CFL News Hub. A dedicated and experienced football analyst, he has been providing comprehensive coverage of the sport since 2018.
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