The Kodiaks Football Club, based out of Prince George, hired former CFL star Keon Raymond last week to be its new Director of Football Operations. Much emphasis was put on the work Raymond and the Kodiaks will be doing in northern B.C., not just in Prince George, to grow and develop the sport of football.
Raymond won't take over the role until July, but Kodiaks President Craig Briere said the Kodiaks were founded on the concept of expanding football throughout northern B.C.
"We want to see the game grow from Williams Lake to Fort Nelson, Prince Rupert to Dawson Creek. Northern B.C. is an underserved market in Canada, and we brought on Keon to help develop that," Briere said.
The Kodiaks are looking to establish a 7-on-7 program, a non-contact program, and developmental programs in places that show interest.
"These programs will be designed specifically for players in northern B.C., and not players in the lower mainland, for example, as we have certain limitations up here due to climate, distance and travel," he said.
Briere said coaching instruction, drills and structures will be available to both football-minded and people new to the sport who want to start or coach a team.
"We are developing a full scale program. We want to come to an area, and guide you through what we're doing. We already have the gear, and it's a plug and play type of mentality we're trying to develop with the sport of football," said Briere.
"Football doesn't need to be intimidating. If you aren't familiar with the sport or haven't coached before, we'll make it simple and easy for you to jump in, and safe and fun for the kids," he said.
As for Raymond, he brings both years of championship-level playing experience, and years of coaching 7-on-7 experience in Alberta.
"He brings character, value, and integrity — all the things we're looking for from a personal standpoint. We'll be developing men and women to become better humans, and what better way to do it than to bring in people who are already good human beings," Briere said.
If anyone is interested in the Kodiaks or starting a football program in Fort St. John, Dawson Creek, and the Peace Region at large, they can contact Briere at 250-552-8920.
Email sports reporter Dillon Giancola at firstname.lastname@example.org