CALGARY - One of the first things Jadon Wagner did upon moving into the Calgary Stampeders locker-room was arrange his personal space nice and neat.
Brigham Young head coach Bronco Mendenhall would certainly be proud.
Wagner, who is heading into his first season with the Stamps and will be on the field for rookie camp Thursday at McMahon Stadium, comes by the meticulousness through years of training.
During Wagner’s tenure at BYU, if the locker wasn’t kept in proper order compared with the example that is under clear Plexiglas, the entire contents are bagged up and players are ordered to see coach Mendenhall.
If it happens twice, the offending player gets banished to the much-smaller alumni locker-room.
Wagner only had it happen once and he learned.
“All I did was leave a backpack sitting where it shouldn’t have been,” said the former BYU starting outside linebacker.
“They aren’t that strict about too many things. The coaches are pretty laid-back.
“The coach has fun with it more than anything. He likes making you come to the office where you feel like you are a dirty person. He laughs about it while he’s doing it.
“For a couple of years, I’ve been training to keep a clean locker. Hopefully I will continue to do it.”
After Wagner had his locker set, he sent out a photo on Twitter to show it off. On Wednesday, once he got into his dorm room at the University of Calgary, Wagner sent out a photo of his digs for June.
Of course, the room was completely tidy and neat.
It will be his home for the next month as the Lethbridge native works into a comfort zone with the Stamps.
When the depth chart was put together, Wagner found himself listed as a defensive end, something that is a bit foreign to him.
The Cougars play a three-four defensive front, which means the rush end position the Stampeders use is somewhat similar to what he’s used to.
But being listed as a defensive end — although he’s 6-foot-4, 245-lb. — is something he didn’t expect.
“I’ve been a linebacker my whole life and I like being a linebacker,” Wagner said. “It’s just a title.
“It’s the same technique. It’s almost the same as the linebacker spot I was playing.”
If Wagner is going to get on the field, it will be mostly on special teams to start out with.
As a starter in college, he wasn’t asked to be a demon on coverage units, but he doesn’t mind doing it.
“I didn’t do as much as I would have liked but I was in there a bit,” Wagner said about college. “The coaches encouraged every starter to be on one special team minimum. They have emphasized that the past year at BYU.
“We needed the special teams to get better. Our best players can’t just sit back. They have to do some of it. I wasn’t as big a part of special teams as I wanted to be.”
Had things gone differently a year ago, Wagner might be going into his second season with the Stamps.
At the 2011 draft, Wagner was fully prepared to skip his senior college season if it meant playing close to home.
But the Hamilton Tiger-Cats selected him in the sixth-round and he returned to BYU instead.
The Stamps picked up his rights the day after Touchdown Atlantic by sending defensive back Milt Collins to Hamilton.
It all worked out for Wagner in the end.
“I have lots of dreams but I always wanted to play professional football,” Wagner said.
“Of all the CFL teams, this was the one I wanted to play for.”
On Twitter: @SUNIanBusby