Rookie gets up to speed for tilt

IAN BUSBY -- Sun Media

, Last Updated: 10:35 AM ET

Rob Cote is preparing to take a second major leap in a two-week span and, this time, most of the people he knows will see it firsthand.

The Calgary Stampeders prospect arrived at training camp two weeks ago trying learn a new position -- fullback -- and had never seen some of the drills the CFL club was running.

Coming straight out of Canadian junior football, the slotback was often standing perplexed when given blocking pads. After completing nine two-a-day practices and getting up to speed, the pace of football is about to increase again tomorrow.

The Stamps face the Edmonton Eskimos tomorrow in their first pre-season game at McMahon Stadium (7:30 p.m., QR77 radio) but the Calgary native feels ready for game action.

"I can't really ask for much more for my first CFL experience," he said. "At home, against Edmonton, it doesn't get much better than that."

The 20-year-old played slotback in college but the Stamps need a fullback with free-agent signing Cory Hathaway going down with a season-ending injury.

ABDULLAH CUT

The Stamps released second-year linebacker Khalid Abdullah yesterday. Abdullah was hampered by a groin injury and didn't participate in drills this week.

"Without getting into negative details, it was just that we had players that would fit a lot better," said Stamps head coach Tom Higgins.

EXTRA POINTS

The only players Higgins rules out of the game are WR David Bautista (quad) and OL John Comiskey (ankle) ... Several others questionable for the game are DB J.R. Ruffin (knee), DL Terrence Patrick (groin), WR Ryan Thelwell (hamstring), and WR Brett Ralph (hamstring).


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