The two-time French champion Saint-Ouen-L’Aumône Cougars have signed quarterback DeAuntre Bush Smiley for the 2017 season.
The 6’1″, 215 lb Smiley scored 13 touchdowns for the Prairie View A&M Panthers (NCAA Div. I) in 2015, one throwing and 12 on the ground. Smiley rushed 52 times for 201 yards and a team-high 12 touchdowns while also completing 13 of 19 passes for 113 yards and one touchdown. Smiley scored at least one touchdown in the final nine games of the season, including scoring three touchdowns against Grambling.
Saint-Ouen-L’Aumône Cougars general manager Xavier Mas;
I wanted a QB with running abilities and one that could report in October. As you know we want our Americans to be here soon to work with their teammates and also because they coach on other teams in our team club. DeAuntre showed me that he wanted to really be a member of our organization and he seemed to me to be a very serious person who will be dedicated to help the team to perform with the huge turnover we have had in our roster.
This is the second American import the Cougars signed for their 2017 campaign. Defensive lineman Teddy Corwin was signed earlier this fall. The 2017 French Elite Championship begins in January.
American Football International chatted with Smiley right before he jumped on the plane to Paris.
AFI: Can you tell me a little bit about how you came to sign with the Cougars?
DeAuntre Bush Smiley: Coach (Xavier) Mas reached out to Me about playing football for his team and I took full advantage of this opportunity to do what I love to do.
AFI: Did you know anything about American football in France or Europe before this?
DBS: I knew a little bit about it but not much I’ve Know a few players to come over and play.
AFI: What are you looking forward to about playing in Paris?
DBS: I’m looking forward to helping anyway possible as a player. No matter needs to be done. I Know it will be different cause it’s a new league I’ve never played in. Far from home infront of a new crowd. Other than that I’m excited and ready for the season
AFI: What do you think you can bring, as an American football players to the Cougars in 2017?
DBS: I believe I can bring in many championships for this organization. Great group of coaches around and awesome group of players. Once we get everything down we need I’m sure we will be a pretty tuff team to beat for years to come.