TORONTO – Approaching the start of the new CFL season, one thing has become evident when looking at how the Toronto Argonauts are planning to attack the 2022 season. The Boatmen are going to run the football and plan to do so effectively.
At the conclusion of the 2021 season the Double Blue finished with the third fewest rush yards and averaged 4.8 yards per carry, which tied the Saskatchewan Roughriders for the second worst rushing average in the league.
Upon the dawn of a new season, Toronto addressed the issue almost immediately by signing three-time rushing yards leader, Andrew Harris.
The signing of Harris alone is exciting enough for both Argos fans and their coaching staff. However, rookie running back Daniel Adeboboye has been on the radar of head coach Ryan Dinwiddie and certainly has him excited to run the ball in the coming season.
“Daniel was a draft pick for us, we were keeping our fingers crossed he was going to be there at 15 for us,” said Dinwiddie of Adeboboye. “I love his film, loved his interview at the combine, we feel like he’s got a bright future and he’s learning from Andrew, which you couldn’t ask for anybody else to learn from.”
The 215-pound back showed off his explosion at the CFL Combine presented by New Era, posting 28 reps on the bench press, the most of any participant. Additionally, he jumped an eye-popping 37.50-inch vertical jump and showed off his willingness to engage blocks in blitz pick-up drills.
“For the most part, he’s picked everything up and been pretty solid,” said Dinwiddie. “We put him in there with the vets and he didn’t miss a beat, so I’m pretty impressed with him.”
Adeboboye played collegiately at Bryant University in Rhode Island where he accumulated 1,816 yards and 16 touchdowns over 34 games played with the Bulldogs.
Despite spending his collegiate years south of the border, Adeboboye grew up in the North York, Toronto area, playing high school football at Northern Secondary School in Toronto before transferring to The Hill School in Pennsylvania. As he enters his first CFL training camp the opportunity to play for his hometown and learn from the likes of Harris are not lost on the young back.
“Growing up, I definitely did watch the CFL, and I’d always tune in to either Argos’ games or games where Andrew Harris was playing,” said Adeboboye. “Fortunately, he’s in Toronto now, so I get to learn from one of my childhood heroes and one of the greats.”
“I’ve been following him since I was a kid and just to have him reach out to me, that was the first moment where I was like, ‘wow I’m really on a team with a legend’,” said Adeboboye of Harris. “When he first arrived at camp, I was a little intimidated just to speak to him because I’m nobody in this league and he’s that guy in this league.”
While Adeboboye is adjusting to being in a locker room with one of his childhood heroes, his fandom has not clouded his vision on the field. Throughout his first weeks of CFL training camp, the Toronto native has continuously impressed the coaching staff and for Adeboboye, he simply wants to make the most of his opportunities.
“I did get my chance to do my thing and I think that I definitely made the most out of my opportunities on special teams and offence,” said Adeboboye. “I can’t wait to play in the preseason games and hopefully the regular season games, because once I start to get integrated into those things and once I get the opportunity to get comfortable, I have confidence in myself.”
Pairing his undeniable athleticism and self-confidence with the opportunity to learn the tricks of the trade from arguably one of the greatest Canadian ball carriers in CFL history certainly generates a lot of warranted excitement for fans of the Double Blue.
Those fans may catch a glimpse of the newest Argo as they get set to take on the Ottawa REDBLACKS in the nation’s capital on Friday, May 27 with kickoff set for 7:30 p.m. ET.