Oh, brother! Siblings suit up

IAN BUSBY, SUN MEDIA

, Last Updated: 6:37 AM ET

The roster move was a minor one, but it was a big deal to the Kashama family.

Rookie defensive end Fernand Kashama was activated last week for the Calgary Stampeders, meaning there was plenty of excitement in the Kashama household.

It was the first time brothers Alain and Fernand Kashama played in the same CFL game, as Alain suited up next to his brother for a handful of plays against the Winnipeg Blue Bombers.

"For us, it was a big moment," said Stampeders defensive end Alain Kashama. "I can't wait for us to start getting sacks. It's not that great to just play. We have to start making plays."

When Alain was a free agent this off-season, he chose Calgary because his younger brother, a linebacker, was a draft pick of the Stamps and would be competing for a job in training camp.

It also didn't hurt that his old defensive co-ordinator from Montreal, Chris Jones, now has the job in Calgary.

The four-year CFL veteran is on his third team and is five years older than Fernand. A year ago, the oldest of the brothers, Hakeem, was a training-camp prospect with the Stamps but was cut.

Although the rest of the family lives in Brampton, Ont., and weren't in Winnipeg, they don't plan on missing any other East Division road trips with both players on the active roster.

"All the games we play out East, my mom and dad and sisters will be there," said the 24-year-old Fernand.

"Seeing both of us on the same team, let alone on the same field at the same time ... I know they never thought that would happen either.

"I can just imagine my mom sitting there watching and tears coming to her eyes."

When Fernand arrived at training camp, the Stamps threw the rookie a curveball.

The 6-foot-3, 221-pounder was asked to play fullback instead of his natural position at defensive line to fill in for the retirement of Teyo Johnson.

Johnson returned at the end of training camp, and Fernand was back across the line again. He's much more comfortable there, especially because big brother can help guide him.

"It's good because he gives me pointers in practice and drills," Fernand said. "Any time he sees me slip up in my technique, he will come over and give me pointers. He nags me quite a bit."

There is another Kashama who could play in the CFL some day. Youngest brother Bronley is at Eastern Michigan and is also a defensive lineman.

Hakeem Kashama is retired and is now coaching high school football in Georgia, but there is always an argument as to who is the best player among the brothers.

"It's a big dispute," Fernand said. "If you ask any one of us, they will say themselves.

"It depends on who you ask. Of course, I will say, 'It's me.' I'm just following the blueprint they set down. My younger brother is following it, too."

Alain has played the most games in the CFL and even had an eight-sack year with the Alouettes in 2007.

So Alain set the bar high for Fernand.

"That's something to shoot for," Fernand said.

"That's the landmark."

IAN.BUSBY@SUNMEDIA.CA


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