Impressive feet, impressive feats

DAN TOTH -- Calgary Sun

, Last Updated: 9:08 AM ET

Sandro DeAngelis treads across CFL fields in a distinctive pair of red and white cleats, personalized with his name and No. 12.

It's a minor perk for a guy who is using the designer footwear to climb the ladder toward financial security and a couple of dusty CFL records.

"Two or three years ago, I thought I'd never play football again," said the second-year Stamp, who enjoys a 38-point lead in the CFL scoring race.

"At the University of Nebraska, I was riding the pine and now just to be in this position is awesome and something I never take for granted.

"I was at my absolute lowest and now I'm at my highest."

He's come a long way since being benched in college for missing on a convert attempt.

The Niagara Falls, Ont., native, last season's CFL rookie of the year, is on pace to establish single-season records for total points and field goals.

Having split the uprights on 48 of 56 attempts (85.7%) this season, including going six-for-six last week against Toronto, DeAngelis is closing in on Saskatchewan Roughriders legend Dave Ridgway's mark of 59 field goals set in 1990.

The 25-year-old phenom is also on pace to inch past former Toronto Argos kicker Lance Chomyc's single-season points mark of 236, set in 1991.

DeAngelis has 183 points with four games remaining.

"I met Dave Ridgway at the 1994 (minor football) Punt Pass and Kick competition in Vancouver," DeAngelis recalled. "I've got pictures of me and my brothers with Dave. He's definitely a guy I looked up to."

When DeAngelis was 14, he also rubbed elbows with Stamps legend Mark McLoughlin, who owns all the team's season and career records for scoring, field goals and converts.

DeAngelis is already in position to eclipse McLoughlin's one-year totals for field goals (54) and points (220).

"In 1995 we were at SkyDome in Toronto for the Punt Pass and Kick and, in pre-game warmups, Mark McLoughlin let me kick field goals with him," DeAngelis said.

"I don't know if he saw me in the competition but next thing I know I'm on the field kicking field goals with the guy. That's something I'll always remember."

Since signing a contract extension earlier this year, a deal that averted an off-season bidding spree among NFL clubs for his services, DeAngelis' stock continues to rise.

While McLoughlin's season records seem certain to fall, career marks might be safe should the affable hoofer head south.

"We'll see, you never know," DeAngelis said of the seemingly inevitable step up to the NFL's high-rent district. "Money's foreign to me, always has been. Two years ago at Nebraska I was getting $550 a month and I thought I was Donald Trump, know what I mean?"


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