_ (press release) _ Ottawa The Ottawa Catholic School Board (OCSB) and Football North have partnered to provide high school football players access to an elite student athlete development program with university and CFL experienced coaches and an opportunity to compete against high school football teams from the United States.
The Football North St. Joe’s program will be in place for next August and will be located at St. Joseph High School in South Nepean. Football North currently operates an elite student athlete fee based football program in the Mississauga area.
According to OCSB Associate Director of Education, Tom D’Amico, “Elite level high school football players will have an opportunity to access top level coaching and training from Football North staff, enabling the student athletes to remain in the Ottawa area rather than to travel to the United States or to the Toronto area for similar preparatory programs.”
St. Joseph High School will continue to field its own school football team to compete in the local high school football league. Participants on the Football North team will not compete against local teams and will not participate in any Ontario Federation of School Athletic Associations (OFSAA) sanctioned games. Football North players will train all year and will compete in a series of games against American based teams, thus allowing maximum exposure to scouts from American and Canadian universities and colleges.
According to Blaine Scatcherd, Head Coach and Director of Football Operations with Ottawa’s Football North St. Joe’s: “Our goal is to attract and retain top Canadian talent and keep them in Canada. Working with the OCSB, we will provide the student athletes an opportunity to specialize in year round football training and compete against the top high school teams and coaches in North America, while they earn their Ontario Secondary School Diploma." Coach Scatcherd played and coached at Acadia University. He coached and was Co-offensive coordinator with the Ottawa Gee Gees.
Lee Barette owner of Football North, and CanadaFootballChat.com, the top amateur football news and recruiting site in Canada states, “The high standards of the Ottawa Catholic School Board (OCSB) coupled with the growth of the Ottawa football community are why we have partnered with the OCSB. The addition of the Ottawa Redblacks and Carleton Ravens has revitalized the Ottawa football community, making it a leader in Canada. We believe adding an elite program at the high school age level complements the professional and university aged programs in the National Capital area.”