Drooling starts over No. 1 pick

GERRY PRINCE -- Edmonton Sun

, Last Updated: 7:28 AM ET

Finishing with the worst record in the CFL is not without its perks.

By virtue of their 4-14-0 record last season, the Stampeders have the first overall selection in this year's Canadian college draft.

There's no shortage of folks interested in acquiring Calgary's No. 1 pick.

Head coach Tom Higgins says five of the league's eight remaining teams have called looking to make a deal - but the Stamps are content to stand pat.

"We've been listening, but right now we hold the first pick and there's a very good possibility we will be making that selection," Higgins said.

"If somebody offers us something too good to pass up, we will trade it away before the actual selection occurs on April 28."

Running back Jesse Lumsden rates as the top pick in this year's harvest of Canadian talent. However, the McMaster product aspires to play in the NFL.

Lumsden could be selected in the NFL draft April 23 and 24. Failing that, he could sign as a free agent south of the border.

In a game where timing is everything, what happens to Lumsden in the 72 hours between the end of the NFL draft and start of the name-calling north of the border is likely to impact Calgary's willingness to deal.

"That's the reason the CFL draft is held when it is," explained Higgins. "Sometimes you need to be patient and wait for some of the athletes. Sometimes they might never come back to the CFL.

"(Lumsden) is definitely one of the top two or three listed on everybody's board. He could drop off as the No. 1 selection because he's drafted in the NFL draft or goes as a high-priority free agent.

"We have that discussion every time we have our draft meetings. We've got him on the board and we know he's a first-round draft pick but we don't know if he's the first pick overall."


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