Eskimos' hopeful snowed out

GERRY MODDEJONGE, QMI Agency

, Last Updated: 11:38 AM ET

It seems even Mother Nature herself was conspiring against Corbin Sharun’s future.

Eight centimetres of snow on the highways to the south cancelled a workout the Edmonton Wildcats safety had with the Calgary Stampeders on Thursday — one that couldn’t be rescheduled prior to Sunday’s CFL Draft.

“That’s the thing that kind of sucks right now,” Sharun said. “They called and said it was snowing and the highways south of Red Deer were horrible. It was pretty nuts down there.”

The good news is, the team has shown interest in him.

“That’s the big thing, especially them wanting to do a workout,” Sharun said. “That was even bigger. I was pretty happy about it and pretty bummed about not going.

“They said that they’ve seen enough on my game films and my highlight reel.”

He has sent tape to other CFL teams throughout his draft year, beginning with Duane Forde’s combine in Toronto, which was held the day before the official CFL evaluation camp in March.

“When I went there, I saw the Eskimos,” said Sharun, who attended the team’s open tryout at Clarke Park last weekend. “I talked to Winnipeg, Edmonton, Calgary and Toronto.”

Short of forging an invitation to the actual e-camp, Sharun has done everything possible to get himself noticed.

After winning three high school championships with the Strathcona Lords, Sharun joined the St. Francis Xavier University X-men as a quarterback. He started three games before spending the rest of his freshman year as backup. The 2007-08 season was much the same.

“I came home from spring break that year, we found out my dad had colon cancer,” Sharun said of his father, Terry. “That’s when I made my decision to come home. I didn’t even think twice about it, my family’s more important than anything.”

He joined the Edmonton Wildcats of the Canadian Junior Football League, where he made the switch to defensive back.

It proved to be a turning point in his career.

“(Coaches) said, ‘If you want to go to the next level, if you want to play pro, you have to play DB. You’re Canadian, you’re six-feet, you’re not going to play quarterback,’” said Corbin, who now has a bit of an edge when it comes to reading opposing quarterbacks. “It helped me out this year. You can tell you start reading things better.”

Seeing his dad fight through cancer has been an inspiration to Corbin whenever things get in his way.

“He got surgery and everything’s good now. He just goes yearly now to get checked up,” he said. “It just shows that no matter what, you fight through it.”

Which makes missing out on the Stampeders workout a little less tough to take.

“There was a reason why it happened, I guess,” said Corbin, who is trying to take it easy now that all the hard work is over heading into the draft. “Just a lot of nerves, a lot of anxiety wondering what’s going to happen. If I’m even going to get picked up in the draft. If I’m not. Everything runs through my head.

“I’ve put everything on the line.”

BIG-LEAGUE LEDUC: Growing up as best friends and teammates in Leduc minor football, Curtis Dublanko is ranked the No. 4 MAC (middle) linebacker by TSN, while Corbin Sharun is ranked the No. 2 SAM (strong side) backer.

Earning their stripes at the grassroots level, they were part of a promising group that has come into its own in their draft year.

“Take Matt Lalande (Edmonton Wildcats/St Mary’s Huskies), Mike Podloski (Edmonton Wildcats), Curtis and Corbin and you have a dominant linebacking corp. Good as any in Canada, amateur or pro,” said former Leduc bantam Ticats head coach Gerald Foster. “I give a big chunk of credit to Greg Compton, who all these guys had as a mentor from 2001-05.”

gerry.moddejonge@sunmedia.ca


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