World news – Naylor: Canadian WR John Metchie ready for college football’s biggest stage with Alabama – TSN approx.

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8h ago

By Dave Naylor

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There have been many stops on the road that have led John Metchie to today’s College Football Playoff National Championship where he will face Ohio State as a recipient for the University of Alabama.

He was in Taiwan born and lived in Nigeria and Ghana before he came to Canada with his parents and three older brothers at the age of six.

He then attended two boarding schools in the USA for high school, one in Maryland and one in New Jersey, before moving to Tuscaloosa, Ala.

But to understand where Metchie’s dreams were born, nurtured, and where his connections remain strongest, you need to go to Brampton, Ont. There he learned the game, played for the Brampton Bulldogs pee-wee team and under the guidance of three football-playing older brothers, while making friendships that are strong to this day.

« The relationships I mean to Having brothers and my close friends at Brampton mean everything to me, « Metchie said during the availability ahead of today’s game. “You are the reason why I am who I am. You have helped me with everything and continue to be there for me unconditionally. “

Having moved so early in life, the Metchie brothers were already close by the time they arrived in Canada. The eldest brother, Miles, joined his high school soccer team. Mostly out of simple curiosity, the younger boys would ride their bikes to school to watch him practice this new game.

Curiosity quickly turned into passion and soon all four brothers were playing, with John taking in whatever he could could, from the support and experience of his brothers.

Miles, Leon and Royce all played university football in Canada. Royce, a defensive attorney, is entering his third season with the Calgary Stampeders of the CFL.

« If there is one thing I can say about how our childhood turned out in relation to moving, this is ours Bindings definitely made a lot stronger, « said Royce. “As you can imagine, if you move around a lot, you have to start all over again. You have to make new friends, new relationships, but luckily one thing that was constant was that we always had each other. “

When the older boys were in their teens, the Metchie House developed into a hub for athletes from nearby football and beyond. This is where they gathered to train, support and challenge each other as athletes and young men.

“We were always there. It’s always been positive, it’s always been a good mood, ”said Melique Straker, a Carleton University defender who played with Metchie for the Bulldogs. “It was always, ‘Whoever is there, whatever we do, we do it together. ‘We go out, we exercise, we exercise … it was kind of a positive thing to look at … and it built us. We grew up there. “

Metchie’s talent in those early days was as remarkable as his ambition. Friends remember a talented athlete who was absolutely serious about what he could achieve in his sport. That ride involved going your own way, choosing the US early in high school to train and play against higher competition.

« His upbringing was very different from many kids, » said Royce . “He’s had the experience of many different cultures moving. He had started to watch the three of us play and he was there. But he built really good relationships with his friends by peeing all the way, bantam. “

These relationships have stayed strong among former teammates through a group chat they call » The 905 « .

That group includes University of Tennessee recipient Josh Palmer, a beacon of hope for the NFL -Design of this spring, which also has roots in the Bulldogs, as well as several friends who play university football in Canada.

The group chats kept them in the mood they had when they were kids at the Metchie house, an experience which they have labeled « 11MMG » in relation to the actual address. Some in the group – including Metchie – even have 11MMG tattoos.

« We kept this to remember how we got to where we wanted to and never to forget where we came from » said Trent Parkes, recipient at Wilfred Laurier University and another Metchie Bulldog teammate. « This brotherhood wasn’t just about football. It was about being there for each other at the end of the day … it really made our relationship easier and allowed them to become more of a family. »

Understandably, they did Close ties made the Alabama soccer games emotional for Metchie’s friends, who appreciate what contributed to his success in his successful second season. Metchie was the second largest recipient of the Crimson Tide with 43 receptions after Heisman Trophy winner Devonte Smith for 835 yards and six touchdowns.

« It’s such a surreal feeling because when we were younger we played NCAA and we always picked the best teams – Alabama, Oregon, whatever, » said Juwan Jeffrey, a defense attorney at the University of Guelph, « It’s a great feeling to turn on the television and see my closest friends on this team. »

Ref: https://www.tsn.ca

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