CFL: Saskatchewan Roughriders sign Swedish LB Jordan Genmark Heath

The Saskatchewan Roughriders have signed Global linebacker Jordan Genmark Heath from Sweden.  The Stockholm native was drafted by the Roughriders in the first round, fifth overall, of the 2022 CFL Global Draft and attended 2022 rookie mini-camp with the Kansas City Chiefs.  

The 6’1″, 225-pound fifth-year senior enrolled at UCLA in early 2021 after graduating from Notre Dame, was a starter at inside linebacker in all 12 games and finished second on the team in tackles (55) and tied for second in sacks (3.5). He had transferred from one of college football’s premier programs where in three years as a backup/special teamer with Notre Dame, he racked up 42 tackles, one of which went for a loss.

 Before playing at the top level of college football, Genmark Heath began his football journey by playing with the Arlanda Jets near Sweden’s capital. As a 13-year-old in Stockholm, he quickly became obsessed with American football.

Not long after, those dreams became reality as he moved halfway across the globe from Stockholm to sunny San Diego where he wound up playing high school football at Cathedral Catholic, becoming a star on the team. Friday night lights quickly changed to Saturday afternoons as college coaches began courting the high school standout. Listed as a four-star prospect, the former Arlanda Jet picked up several offers from powerhouse programs such as California, Vanderbilt, and Boston College.

Initially, the young Swede committed to Cal before their coaching staff was dismissed shortly after the 2016 season. Fortunately for him, a late scholarship offer and a January visit swayed Genmark Heath to join the Fighting Irish.

After his freshman season, Notre Dame’s coaches switched the promising safety to linebacker. The move paid off as the newly converted defender saw more playing time as a versatile linebacker with excellent coverage skills. The move from the secondary to the physical role of linebacker felt comfortable for the hard-hitting sophomore.

After three seasons with the Irish, Genmark Heath had made a name for himself as a core special teamer. After graduating in 2020, the former San Diego resident transferred back to California joining the Bruins for his final year of NCAA eligibility.

Read more about the Swedish talent’s journey to NCAA 

Alex is a former professional American football player who is now studying in London. His goal writing for AFI is to stay involved with the game that has given him so much. Alex enjoys covering leagues and players and sharing different football