There are a plethora of different ways a high school football player can get noticed in recruiting. A "hot-bed" location can help an athlete get recruited by college coaches, a highlight video from Youtube, or going to 7-on-7 camps around the U.S. can help exposure of a high school football athlete looking to play at the next level. In Canada, this is a much more difficult task, due to many reasons. For one, the hype of Canadian football lacks resources compared to football in the U.S., also many of Canada's football programs are way less compettitive. The exposure of recruiting in Canada is very low, mostly due to how spread-out the country is. Also, the technique/coaching style is much different in terms of popularity as hockey dominates the focus of Canada. However, U.S. colleges and Universities are starting to notice more and more Canadian football prospects as another avenue of football recruiting.
Canada doesn't have the money to put into weight rooms, coaching, and administration like most American schools, which hurts possible recruits from Canada, but it may also mean football players from our northern neighbor may have more potential or a bigger upside than American recruits. A lot of times Canadian prospects are offered a bursary from U.S. colleges, which is basically a half scholarship. International tuition rates added up could cost a Canadian student close to $40,000 dollars (Per Year) at UCLA, for example. However, there's a ton of solid D-1 prospects in Canada, today we'll meet Devantie Campbell.
Devantie Campbell - One of Canada's Best Under-The-Radar Prospects (Class of 2014)
Devantie is 15 years old, and plays football at LaSalle Comprehensive Community High School, in Montreal, Canada. He's from the Class of 2014, stands at 5'11", 187 lbs. and had a very productive sophomore season at LaSalle. We asked Devantie Campbell just how competitive football is in Montreal?
"Montreal football is pretty competitive, but not as competitive as U.S. football. Players don't really work hard down here but there are some people who do."
The young Canadian prospect was selected as the Defensive Line MVP for his team, and also earned League Most Outstanding D-Line player in 2011. Devantie knows its tough for Canadian football players to get noticed by U.S. programs, but he hopes to gain some attention after his 2012 season :
"My goals are to get recognized in the U.S, work even harder on my speed, Make my dreams come true and to be the best football player that I can be."
Those are great goals to strive for, as this 2014 prospect still has two years to showcase his abilities, and should start to gain some recruiting exposure in the states. Devantie plays a combination of Tight End, and Wide Receiver on offense, and switches up between Linebacker and Safety on defense. An athlete on the rise, and with solid experience at multiple positions for LaSalle. We asked Mr. Campbell what he thought was his best skill is --
"My best skill is that i have amazing hands, i can use my body to get the ball, and use my quick feet to get by players."
Often finding the "right-fit" or gaining exposure is the key to successful recruitment, and knowing your own style is just as important, as what an athlete runs his 40-time in. For example, when asked (Devantie Campbell) what style of play would best fit himself, he responded--
"On Offense it'd probably be a spread offense, and on defense a 4-3."
These are huge factors for prospects trying to get their name out there to Colleges/Universities in the recruiting process. It's already a nearly impossible task to get noticed for Canadian prospects in the U.S., but Coaches are beginning to see the value of finding recruits in Canada. The University of Texas basketball program has discovered great prospects from Canada such as Myck Kabongo, Tristan Thompson (Now Pro), and Cory Joseph (Also Pro) lately, and a rise of recruitment should start happening for Canada's football recruits. One thing is for-sure, Devantie Campbell is ready to make an impact, and get noticed in America. Hopefully Canadian athletes will start to get the credit they deserve in the U.S. !
Here's a link to Devantie Campbell's Highlight Video: