Toe-tapping at the back of the end zone, Simon Fraser pure freshman receiver Caelin Johnson scores one of his three touchdowns Saturday in a loss at Linfield (Ore.). (Photo by Naji Sakir property of LInfield Sports Communications 2021. All Rights Reserved)
Feature University Football

Ballard’s boffo Beaver receiver! He’s not Calvin, but Simon Fraser’s pure freshman Caelin Johnson takes mega-impact potential into Saturday’s SFU Stadium christening!

BURNABY MOUNTAIN — Caelin Johnson may be the baby of the bunch within a burgeoning quintet of Simon Fraser receivers trying to catch a rising star these days atop Burnaby Mountain.Yet based on one of the most memorable pure freshman break-out performances in program history this past Saturday, albeit as part of the team’s 56-20 […]

Admitting later to massive case of nerves, SFU's Kristie Elliott came up short on this 39-yard field goal try in the first half of Saturday's game at Oregon's Linfield Wildcats. (Photo by Naji Sakir property of Linfield athletics 2021. All Rights Reserved)
Feature University Football

“I’m getting chills…” says Simon Fraser’s Kristie Elliott, after 21-year-old kicker becomes Canada’s first female to score in a university football game!

There is a homespun appeal to Kristie Elliott’s personality that is so endearing, that even on her biggest days, it comes out of her soul and speaks as if a wide-eyed kid at the candy store.Saturday was one of those days for the Simon Fraser football team’s place-kicker.So, how does it feel, she’s asked, to […]

Simon Fraser's fourth-year sophomore slinger Justin Seiber heated up late as a ray lof light at Linfield on Saturday for the winless SFU football team. (Photo property of Linfield athletics 2021. All Rights Reserved)
Feature University Football

As Simon Fraser suffers bleak loss at Linfield, super-soph QB Justin Seiber comes out of mothballs to show he’s still got the shine

Hey Justin Seiber, welcome back.Simon Fraser football fans hearty enough to follow their heroes into the second half of Saturday’s disappointing 56-20 road loss in Oregon to the Div. 3 Linfield Wildcats were no doubt looking for something to hang their hats on.And so amidst the expected fault lines of youth which have clearly been […]

Simon Fraser defensive end Tank Brewster's early sack of Idaho quarterback EJ Jordan produced a fumble that was recovered by SFU linebacker Griffin Barrett. (Photo property of Idaho Vandals' athletics 2021. All Rights Reserved)
Feature University Football

Simon Fraser football season opener: Head coach Mike Rigell candid after young team suffers resounding loss to Div. 1 Idaho Vandals!

Coming off a cancelled season and not having played a game for 658 days, the Simon Fraser football coaching staff knew that Saturday’s maiden test of its 2021 season was going to be like the first day of class in the school of hard knocks.Matched against the toughest foe it will face all season, Div. […]

Simon Fraser guard Christian 'Boots' Butenschoen (66) and the rest of the young Simon Fraser offensive line gets a stern test Saturday when it opens the season on the road against the NCAA Div. 1 FCS Idaho Vandals. (Photo by Paul Yates property of Vancouver Sports Pictures 2021. All Rights Reserved)
Feature University Football

After a lost 2020 season, Saturday’s kick-off at Idaho can’t come soon enough for ‘Boots’ Butenschoen and Simon Fraser’s young offensive line!

BURNABY — Christian Butenschoen is not buying all of this talk of youth being served along the trenches of perhaps the youngest offensive line in all of NCAA D2 football.“Even though we’re young, the chemistry there is looking good right now,” the team’s 6-foot-3, 290 pound sophomore left guard out of Bellingham High explained earlier […]

SFU cornerback Jerrell Cunmmings, pictured during Tuesday's 2021 fall training camp practice at Fox Field, has developed into a game-changing talent within the Great Northwest Athletic Conference. (Photo by Howard Tsumura property of Varsity Letters 2021. All Rights Reserved)
Feature High School Football University Football

SFU Football opener 2021: Now that he’s turned a corner, Jerrell Cummings is ready to roar as the heart-and-soul leader in Simon Fraser’s defensive secondary!

BURNABY — Jerrell Cummings was all of 17 years of age when he suited up for his first Simon Fraser fall football camp.With the start of the 2021 season coming this Saturday afternoon (1 p.m.) at the FCS Div. 1 Idaho Vandals, it’s amazing when you consider how far, over the course of two adversity-filled […]

Simon Fraser returning quarterbacks Justin Seiber (left) and Brandon Niksich are setting a tone of togetherness as they battle it out for the GNAC team's starting quarterback job. (Photos by Howard Tsumura property of Varsity Letters 2021. All Rights Reserved)
Feature University Football

SFU Football 2021: In its return-to-play GNAC season, classy duelling QB-1s Seiber and Niksich keep shared focus on team fortunes!

BURNABY MOUNTAIN — It’s a vast understatement to say that a lot has happened since the last time the football team at Simon Fraser University found itself in the day-to-day preparations associated with the run-up to a season-opening game.It’s also the best way to set the scene for the NCAA’s only non-U.S. school, which as […]

Former Simon Fraser and Vancouver College product Rysen John made a trio of catches Saturday as his New York Giants faced the New York Jets in the preseason opener for both teams. (File photo property of USA Today 2021. All Rights Reserved)
Feature High School Football University Football

Rysen John’s NFL preseason debut: We go inside the three catches snared Saturday by Simon Fraser’s own New York Giant!

Rysen John’s journey to the NFL has begun its next act, and as part of the en masse opening to the 2021 exhibition season, all of that added up to his first critical reviews on U.S. national television.And for those catching the exploits of the former Simon Fraser University receiver, now doing his thing as […]

SFU head coach Mike Rigell has listened and learned at every stop along his coaching journey. (Photo by Paul Yates property of Vancouver Sports Pictures 2021. All Rights Reserved)
Feature University Football

VL Podcast 01.20.21: Simon Fraser head coach Mike Rigell on his football journey from BYU to the sidelines of Terry Fox Field!

LANGLEY — From a college football career at Brigham Young University to an NFL coaching internship under Andy Reid and Eric Bieniemy with the Kansas City Chiefs, Mike Rigell has travelled a long and winding road on his journey to becoming the head coach of Simon Fraser University football. Today, Coach Rigell joins the Varsity […]

Simon Fraser running back Bo Palmer was part of the program's wave of early success in the GNAC. (Photo by Ron Hole property of Simon Fraser athletics 2020. All Rights Reserved)
Feature University Football

The VL Podcast welcomes Bo Palmer: Simon Fraser’s record-setting running back looks back on Shrum Bowl and the school’s early days in the NCAA!

BURNABY — It’s Wednesday and time to wrap up our two-part series of Shrum Bowl memories by chatting with Simon Fraser University running back Bo Palmer. A man of many talents, Palmer not only left his mark on the NCAA-era of football at SFU, he enjoyed a little-known career as a child actor. Originally a […]