Every week there are a number of players in the NCAA and NFL that change games. They make plays and are recognized around the sports world for their accomplishments. Usually they are the players that have already made plays throughout their careers and are already known by many and for the longest time all of these athletes that were being recognized for making big plays and impacting games in the NCAA and NFL were Americans and were coming from big sports states like California, Virginia, and Florida but now we are seeing them from other places, other states, other countries and other continents including Canada.
Canada has been known for it’s talent in the game of hockey, and will stay like that because of the number of hockey players the country produces year in, year out, however after a third straight week in College football this season and a second straight week of the NFL season there have been Canadians recognized for making big plays in football and soon the game of football could be one of the primary sports in the country. During the week, we saw Alonzo Addae have a huge 10 tackle, one sack performance with West Virginia University, and recognized by the NFL Draft Network as the NCAA defensive player of the week. Also recognized was Ottawa native Fabrice Mukendi who plays running back from Bryant University. Mukendi ran for 56 yards, and caught 3 passes for 23 yards with one score and was named the NEC offensive rookie of the week. He now has 226 yards of offence this season and 2 scores as a freshman but is not the only one from Ottawa making plays.
Mukendi was joined by Jesse Luketa from Ottawa who has 8 tackles in Penn State’s whiteout game against Auburn and now has 17 tackles on the season, and Luiji Vilain who also had a big game for Wake Forest. Vilain made 2 tackles and was able to impact the Wake Forest-Florida State game by forcing and recovering a fumble. Akeem Mesidor and Jonathan Sutherland each had 3 tackles in their week 3 games from Ottawa but those are just a select few of many great performances from Canadians.
Among those performances was of course Alonzo Addae’s 10 tackle, one sack game against Virginia Tech as well as Enock Makonzo’s 9 tackles against Buffalo, Samuel Emilus’ 3 catches for 57 yards and a score for Louisiana Tech University, Chase Brown’s 111 yards of offence on 16 touches, Jared Wayne’s 100 receiving yards on 5 receptions, Nick Mardner’s 97 yards receiving and Damien Alford’s 73 yard touchdown reception which marks the 6-foot-6 Montreal, Quebec native’s first reception of his career at Syracuse.
These performances were then followed by those in the NFL and in week 2 of the 2021 NFL season we saw Canadian receiver Chase Claypool catch 3 passes for 70 yards, Canadian defensive back Jevon Holland have 3 tackles, 2 quarterback hits and a fumble recovery and Canadian defensive back Benjamin St Juste make 3 tackles and deflect one pass. There were other Canadians that made their presence felt like Joshua Palmer’s 21 receiving yards against the Cowboys and Christian Covington’s 2 tackles on the defensive line against Dallas as well but the first three mentioned had the bigger impact on the results of the games.
Watch for these Canadian stars as they continue to make ways for the young athletes growing up with dreams of playing at the level that they play at. Week 3 of the NFL season opens with a Thursday Night game between the Texans and Panthers which features Canadian running back Chuba Hubbard.