August 31, 2012
Help on way for Stampeders' special teams
By SCOTT FISHER, QMI Agency
CALGARY - The Calgary Stampeders special teams could be getting a boost.
Sophomore linebacker Akwasi Antwi said he's healthy and ready to go.
Antwi led the team with 17 special-teams tackles last season but has been slowed by muscle tightness in 2012.
"Special teams are such a big part of the game in the CFL," Antwi said. "Last year, I was blessed to lead the team in special teams tackles.
"This year, it hasn't gone like I'd hoped, but I'll take it week by week and at the end of the year, we'll see how things roll out."
After sitting out the last few weeks, he hopes to return for the Labour Day Classic.
"Last year was fun," he said of the big game. "It's a big deal in Alberta.
"I want to be a part of this game and the rematch next Friday."
Special teams coach Mark Kilam said the Mount Allison product has come a long way since training camp in 2011.
"I call him my son, because I had to teach him how to play (special teams) last year," Kilam said.
"He made a lot of mistakes early in the year. But as the year went on, he was one of our core guys.
"It would be great to get him back. We'll have to see how the ratio and the roster works out."
Defensive lineman Junior Turner could also draw back into the lineup.
"I've been out for a bit, the majority of the season," Turner said.
"It was a nagging foot injury that was continuous and we had to take a lot of precautions with."
The 6-foot-3, 230-pounder, who said his foot is about 85-90%, said he reports to practice early in an attempt to bang the rust off.
"Me and Dorian Smith, we come out here early, about 15 minutes before practice, and we work on hands and feet," he said.
"And we do some conditioning circuits after practice just to get the feet moving in sync with things."
The Labour Day Classic might be the highlight of the season for a lot of fans, but Turner said he has no intention of being one of the spectators.
He wants to take on the Edmonton Eskimos.
"They're a tough team and they're playing great football right now," he said. "So, we have to be disciplined and come with our best effort."
And get a win at home for the first time since July 19.
"We have to ball out in front of our home fans," Turner said. "They always come out and support us through thick and thin."
On Twitter: @SUNScottFisher