Big and small, Esks stand tall

Eskimos Harry Von Kann and teammate Brian Logan participate in Edmonton Eskimos practice at Clarke...

Eskimos Harry Von Kann and teammate Brian Logan participate in Edmonton Eskimos practice at Clarke Park. (Laura Pedersen/QMI Agency)

Gerry Moddejonge, QMI Agency

, Last Updated: 9:11 PM ET

They are the tall and the short of Edmonton Eskimos training camp this year.

But Scott Ferguson and Brian Logan are a lot more similar than their statures suggest.

Towering out from the team’s skyline at six-and-a-half feet and tipping in at 355 pounds, Ferguson definitely has size on his side.

The offensive lineman might as well be a whole other Logan, who is listed at 185 pounds and gives up an entire foot of height.

“I’m five-six,” the cornerback back said, smiling. “On a good day.”

“I didn’t wish I was bigger until probably this past April, when the (NFL) draft came around and coaches were saying that I had the ability to play football in the NFL, but just didn’t have the size and the height.”

Neither did Ferguson, at first.

“I was kind of small until about ninth or 10th grade and then puberty hit me like a brick wall. That was kind of the end of that, I’ve been a big man ever since,” said Ferguson, who grew up playing basketball, soccer and baseball before finally getting into football in his junior year of high school in Bowmanville, Ont. “I kind of got pushed into football.”

And now he’s the one doing the pushing.

“It’s nice to have the extra girth here and there. People can’t quite go directly through you,” Ferguson said. “It kind of helps if you miss with your hands, you’ve still got your body to back you up.”

But there are times when he wishes he wasn’t so big.

“Absolutely, just personally, health-wise,” said Ferguson, who was 365 pounds in the off-season but has taken on a nutritionist and new training regimen. “It’s always easier to be smaller, in better shape and move around better.

“My goal is 350 by the end of camp and keep going down from there.”

When it comes to strength, there is really no contest. But Logan is hardly a pushover.

With a one-rep max of 325 pounds on the bench press, he can stand up for himself. Still, there is no replacement for size.

“You have natural strength,” Ferguson grinned. “You’ve got to have strength to make a body like this move.”

But strength doesn’t just come from big muscles, as Logan found out.

“I had that spark coming into junior college, out of high school when I didn’t get any scholarships. That definitely fueled the fire,” said Logan, who walked on at California’s Foothill College for two years before spending the next two at Brigham Young.

“After that, I think my love and passion for the game just took over.

“I don’t really have the mindset of coming out and proving myself to the NFL, I’m looking at it as another opportunity to play football.”

When it comes to speed, Ferguson isn’t expected to cross the finish line first, but his fastest time on the 40 is still a perfectly acceptable 5.5 seconds.

Whereas on his pro day, Logan ran it in 4.43 seconds, and has been clocked as low as 4.41. But speed isn’t the only advantage of a more compact build.

“Going against guys that are six-five, it’s easy to read their hips because they’re pretty much eye-level with me,” Logan said.

“So I can tell when they break. The slightest move for them, I can get that extra little burst that I need to beat them to the ball.

“You can’t measure my heart and my dedication and my determination.”

gerry.moddejonge@sunmedia.ca

Twitter@Gerry_EdmSun 


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