The Winnipeg Blue Bombers top two picks from Tuesday’s Canadian Football League Draft, Virginia Cavaliers Defensive Lineman Trent Corney and Simon Fraser University Offensive Lineman Michael Couture, were finally made available to the media via a conference call Wednesday Afternoon.
Corney was the team’s first selection at #9 to begin the second round of the draft and admitted to being a little surprised by being taken by the Blue Bombers because he said he had not spoken with Winnipeg at all prior to the draft. “They kinda sneaked under the radar. It was like a really pleasant surprise,” said the personable 6-3, 255 pound native of Brockville, Ontario who texted his agent on Tuesday night to find out when and where he was going to go. “Like he knew I was going to go to Winnipeg and I said like really. How do you know this and I don’t.”
Corney played outside linebacker at last weekend’s NY Jets Mini Free Agent Camp and felt he gave a strong performance, but is a little disappointed about how some of his NFL “opportunities” failed to materialize. “One thing that was really frustrating for me is I was told by about 9 teams who called me before the (NFL) draft and said if I didn’t get drafted they were going to sign me as a free agent. And none of them pulled the trigger.”
That might explain why Corney is looking forward to coming to the Blue Bombers camp and a team that wants him, albeit with a chip on his shoulder “so large that I might be walking in with a limp.”
Corney describes coming to Winnipeg as going “full circle” because the first tackle football team he suited up for was the Brockville Bombers. Although their team colors are Black and Gold.
While Corney was watching the draft unfold on TV while doing some back squats with his buddies in the weight room of his parents house in Brockville, Michael Couture was surrounded by family, friends, and past-present- and as it would turn out- at least one future team mate- at his Mom and Dad’s home in Burnaby, BC on CFL Draft Day as the first pick was made shortly after 4 p.m. out on the West Coast. “Around 3:30 p.m. I couldn’t take a seat, I was kinda pacing in front of the TV,” said the 6-4, 276 pound SFU Lineman who had been advised he could be going any time in the first round, but felt pretty confident he would’t drop out of the Top Ten. “I wasn’t really sure what was going to happen so I was a little bit nervous but more excited just to know where I was going to finally know where I was playing football in two weeks.”
One of the happy visitors to the Couture household was previous SFU and now present Blue Bomber team mate Matthias Goossen. But the Winnipeg 3rd year center and 2014 first round pick isn’t the only season Couture is familiar with his new professional home. “Both my parents (Dan & Joanne) were born there and my whole family is from Winnipeg. I have Aunts, Uncles, and cousins who are living there right now. Goose just told me it’s a good place, the coaching staff is awesome, I’m excited to play for Mike O’Shea because I heard he’s quite the coach.”