Twenty-five players from across the nation have been selected in the first-ever LFA Canadian Draft. These players will now have the opportunity to hone their skills and continue their development against Mexico’s best while competing in the country’s premier professional league. The Draft is the latest step in the continuing partnership between the Canadian Football League (CFL) and the Liga de Fútbol Americano Profesional (LFA).
The eight LFA teams will hold reserved roster spots for Canadians in the upcoming 2020 season. The player pool was comprised of the top Canadian CFL free agents who had previously indicated a desire to play in Mexico.
With the historic first overall selection, the Saltillo Dinos selected offensive lineman Ben Koczwara from London, Ont. The former Waterloo Warrior was previously selected in the eighth round of the 2018 CFL Draft by the Winnipeg Blue Bombers. Rounding out the Top-5 picks were offensive lineman Jacob Czaja, defensive back Jeremy Fagnan, quarterback Graham Kelly and defensive back Nick Parisotto.
Of the 25 selected-players, seven were former CFL picks, including wide receiver Alex Morrison who was drafted in the fourth round at No. 29 by Montreal in 2017, defensive back Elroy Douglas who was a 2016 fifth-round pick by Hamilton and 2017 Winnipeg sixth-rounder Ian Marouf.
As the CFL continues to deepen its international footprint and introduce new pathways for Canadians to play, it has also partnered with the leading gridiron football federations and leagues in Austria, Great Britain, Denmark, Finland, France, Germany, Italy, Norway and Sweden, and is in discussions with others.
In much the same way, the 2019 season saw the CFL feature designated ‘global players’ from countries outside the U.S. and Canada on each of its nine member clubs – a first for the league. Next season, the number of global players per team will grow from up-to-three to as many as five.
2019 LFA CANADIAN DRAFT RESULTS
|1||Saltillo Dinos||Ben Koczwara||OL||Waterloo|
|2||Monterrey Fundidores||Jacob Czaja||OL||St. Francis Xavier|
|3||Querétaro Pioneros||Jeremy Fagnan||DB||St. Francis Xavier|
|4||Naucalpan Raptors||Graham Kelly||QB||Mount Allison|
|5||Mexico City Condors||Nick Parisotto||DB||Guelph|
|6||Mexico City Mexicas||Alex Morrison||WR||UBC|
|7||Toluca Osos||Ian Marouf||DL||Guelph|
|8||Saltillo Dinos||Bryce Vieira||RB||Ottawa|
|9||Puebla City Artilleros||Zacary Alexis||DB||Montreal|
|10||Monterrey Fundidores||Elijah Watson||OL||Carleton|
|11||Querétaro Pioneros||Drew Morris||LB||Acadia|
|12||Naucalpan Raptors||Zeph Fraser||WR||Guelph|
|13||Mexico City Condors||Dallas Boath||WR||Calgary|
|14||Mexico City Mexicas||Lautaro Frecha||DB||Waterloo|
|15||Toluca Osos||Mandella Loggale||DB||Saint Mary’s|
|16||Saltillo Dinos||Jordan Ngantsi||DB||Bishop’s|
|17||Puebla City Artilleros||Elroy Douglas||DB||Missouri Western St.|
|18||Naucalpan Raptors||Brad Friesen||LB||UBC|
|19||Mexico City Condors||Brendon Thera-Plamondon||WR||Calgary|
|20||Mexico City Mexicas||Archelaus Jack||WR||Saint Mary’s|
|21||Saltillo Dinos||Jimmie Cunningham||DL||St. Francis Xavier|
|22||Monterrey Fundidores||Brad Mikoluff||K/P||Manitoba|
|23||Mexico City Condors||Shaun Robinson||DE/LB||Mount Allison|
|24||Mexico City Mexicas||Dylan Schrot||WR||Manitoba|
|25||Saltillo Dinos||David Steeves||LB||Trinity Bible College|