V.I. Raiders coach Jerome Erdman gives players instructions at the end of spring camp this year at Merle Logan Field. The Canadian Junior Football League club’s main camp gets underway Friday (July 8) in Duncan.

V.I. Raiders willing to put in the work at main camp

The V.I. Raiders junior football team will hold its main camp Friday through Sunday (July 8-10) in Duncan.

The season is still a couple of weeks away, but the V.I. Raiders know that winning at main camp is a part of winning football games.

Nanaimo’s Canadian Junior Football League club will hold its camp Friday through Sunday (July 8-10) in Duncan.

Coach Jerome Erdman said his players have to come into camp ready to go, and he expects that to be the case.

“We’ll be working our butts off. We’ll be having fun, too,” he said. “At the end of the day, they know what it takes to win … They’ve been in the game long enough to know that you’re not going to get any success without hard work.”

He and the coaching staff are planning a challenging few days. Erdman was happy with how last year’s camp went and will stick with what worked.

“It’s always different because you have all the new players coming in and there’s going to be a new dynamic,” he said.

Virtually every player the Raiders liked at spring camp has committed to the team, and along with returnees and recent additions, there will be about 80 guys at camp.

“That’s a good number, because it’s not just a number,” said Erdman. “They’re 80 quality guys.”

There will be all kind of battles to watch at camp as players look to prove themselves at various positions.

Most notably, the quarterbacking picture is undetermined going into camp, with Jake Laberge from Coquitlam, North Rainey and Brody Taylor from Nanaimo and Kevin Chopek from Medicine Hat all conceivable starters.

The running back unit got shaken up with the recent addition of Jahvari Bennett, a 1,000-yard rusher in the CIS last season.

The defensive backfield will be a fierce camp battle, as the Raiders feel they have a ton of really good players there. It’s a similar story with the receiving corps, and Erdman is also interested to see how the offensive line and defensive line units will come together.

“That’s the beauty of camp,” the coach said. “You have a group, but we don’t have a depth chart, so whoever wins the battle is going to play. That’s fun for coaches and for players, too.

“That’s why you work so hard, because you get what you earn.”

Whereas spring camp was more about evaluation, at main camp, the Raiders know all the guys there can play, so they’re looking at the athletes through a different lens.

“Now we’ve got to teach them our system and sometimes that’s where you find a few things out…” Erdman said. “When you go to training camp you’re tired, you’re beat and you get a lot thrown at you mentally, so that’s when you really find out what you’ve got.”

Main camp is taking place at Queen of Angels School in Duncan. The first practice is Friday night, there will be two practices on Saturday, one more on Sunday morning and then an intrasquad game Sunday afternoon.

The season starts July 23 when the Kamloops Broncos come to Nanaimo.

sports@nanaimobulletin.com

Just Posted

LETTER TO THE EDITOR: Machleary proposal would alter Old City

Density of proposed development very different from what’s currently allowed, notes letter writer

Man who crushed Nanaimo RCMP cars with stolen truck gets more jail time

Majore Jackson, 34, sentenced to two more years in jail in provincial court in Nanaimo

Developers withdraw rezoning application for huge Parksville waterfront plan

IAG to create new draft after processing public feedback

B.C. Ferries wants input on what a new Horseshoe Bay terminal might look like

Ferry corporation accepting feedback on terminal re-development design concepts until Oct. 13

Nanaimo Search and Rescue to build a long-term base in Harewood

Group will sign 25-year co-management agreement for Fourth Street rec centre

Mid Island Performing Arts Festival receives donation of 111-year-old piano

Instrument was originally owned by festival’s founder, Andrew Dunsmore

Nanaimo-Ladysmith candidates try to chart a path to victory

Conservatives, NDP, Liberals set sights on votes needed to unseat Green incumbent

Defense says burden of proof not met in double murder case against Victoria father

Closing statements begin in trial for man accused of killing daughters Christmas 2017

B.C. dog breeder banned again after 46 dogs seized

The SPCA seized the animals from Terry Baker, 66, in February 2018

Surrey mom allegedly paid $400,000 for son in U.S. college bribery scam

Xiaoning Sui, 48, was arrested in Spain on Monday night

Three dogs found shot dead in Prince George ditch

The three adult dogs appeared to be well cared for before being found with gunshot wounds, BC SPCA says

B.C. party bus company to be monitored after 40 intoxicated teens found onboard

Police received tip teens and young adults were drinking on party buses and limousines in Surrey

Rick Mercer calls out Conservative candidate in B.C. for fake meme

‘Not true. All fake. Please Stop,’ tweeted Rick Mercer in response

Bear killed in Kimberley after chasing girl, wreaking havoc on town

This particular brown-coloured bear has been the subject of many calls this summer; very food habituated, CO says

Most Read