It is with a partnership formed with the Northern Football League that The Roughriders Foundation has been able to set up a training camp, giving 200 plus children the opportunity to train with some of the very best in the business.
Recently they put on a three day camp at Mosaic Stadium. The commissioner of the Northern Football League, Ryan Karakochuk, had this to say on the matter:
“They are getting drilled by the best coaches from the Rams the Huskies, the Riot…We have a lot of female players and the Riders are going to come out a little bit later and they get to meet them, so overall it’s just one of those experiences that some kids will never get to do so we’re very grateful.”via CTV
Brett Lauther, who of course is a kicker for the Saskatchewan Roughriders said it’s something to be taught in such a capacity, but it’s also exciting to be on the other end…doing the teaching:
“One of the promises I made to myself when I was off not playing for a few years there was if I get the chance to play again was number one giving back to the community and everyone involved in it…So standing here in front of you guys today is pretty cool.”via CTV (link above)
The camp ended with the home-opener…all 225 kids granted the opportunity to watch the game unfold.
Riders Defense Leads Team to Victory in Season Opener
And speaking of the season opener for the Riders, it turned out to be a good start for a team that is desperate to make things right after last season…many teammates felt they could have done better and they seem intent on making a better go around this season.
The proof is in the pudding as they say, and on the gridiron over the weekend, the proverbial pudding was thick and velvety for the Riders…especially in the defense department.
The Roughriders won the game by 30 to 13, which no doubt is an epic start to the season. QB, Cody Fajardo, had a great game…22 of 32 passing and that was for 311 yards…even one touchdown. The offence went that extra mile in the fourth quarter. Fajardo made the following statements:
“The first half wasn’t how we wanted to start, but to tell you the truth that one felt good because, if you look at our team last year, we always started fast and then slowed up toward the second half. It felt good tonight to finish…
That was one of our big talks offensively and `finished’ was the word of the year for us. To have that come back full circle for our first game, it really shows the guys that it means a lot.”via CBC
Pete Robertson, Mike Edem, Larry Dean and Rolan Milligan, Charleston Hughes, AC Leonard and Charbel Dabire all recorded sacks during the game, Robertson recording 2. He had this to say on the impressive Riders defense:
“It goes to show that everybody came to play. It speaks to our depth. The linebackers were outstanding and the defensive backs allowed us time to rush the passer because of their coverage. They helped us get to the quarterback for sure.”via CBC (link above)
In the end, the game wasn’t sold out as far as spectators in the stands are concerned, but hardcore Riders fans will never stop supporting the team despite the fact that prices are a tad high for tickets right now. Really it’s only an issue because everything else in life has gotten so darn expensive—inflation and all that—but belief, deep and strong, is in the team and the team seems to know it because they hit it hard in their season opener for sure.
The Riders are set to face the Elks on Saturday June 18th at 9:30 PM EST. And despite the win, head coach, Craig Dickenson, still feels there’s room for improvement, as the above tweet shows. As they say, always strive for better and never settle.