Acadia coaches seal the deal

Acadia adds three east coast commits to their 2018 class.

For receiver Ben Smith from Charles P. Allen High School and defensive backs Ben George from Moncton High School and Riley Gabriel from Cobequid Educational Centre, it all boiled down to the impressive resume of the Acadia Axemen’s head coach, Jeff Cummins.

Ben Smith

Courtesy of Jeff Cummins.

When choosing his school, Ben Smith based his decision off familiarity. “I’ve went to the campus there before and really liked the atmosphere, the coaching staff and the campus,” Smith said. “Jeff Cummins is a very achieved coach (and) Squires will be a great receiver coach.”

In Smith’s six years of football, he has played with the Bedford Sackville Saints (Bedford Sackville Minor Football) and the Charles P. Allen Cheetahs (Nova Scotia School Athletic Federation Football League). He is a former Cheetahs’ MVP and a division MVP.

The 6’2, 180lbs product of Bedford, Nova Scotia, will be taking sociology.

Ben George

Ben George has the utmost confidence in his decision to become an Axeman. “They have an unbelievable coaching staff and of course a top-notch program, so I think Acadia gives me the best chance to develop as a player, win some championships and have a great educational experience,” George, who is interested in Kinesiology, said.

“Having a head coach that played D1 and in the CFL, obviously (he) knows what he’s talking about, and a great group of assistant coaches as well who buy into the program,” George added. “They (also) have a top-notch facility with an amazing new weight room and strength coach.”

George, who is 5’10, 170lbs, has been playing football for 12 years. In high school, he was a member of the Moncton Purple Knights (New Brunswick Interscholastic Athletic Association) in his hometown of Moncton, New Brunswick. He is a former NBIAA player of the year and he is also a kicker.

Riley Gabriel

For Riley Gabriel, proximity and community were factors in his decision. “It’s closer to home and the atmosphere around the guys in the team is very welcoming and close like family. They made me feel like I’ve already been there for months,” he said.

“The coaching staff is great,” he added. “With Cummins playing at Oregon back in his day, he knows what it takes to be an elite football player and I plan on taking any tips from him over the next four to five years to be the best player I possibly can to hopefully continue playing at the next level.”

While he was born in Springhill, Nova Scotia, Gabriel now calls Truro, Nova Scotia, home. He has played with the Truro Blue Bombers (Nova Scotia Minor Football League), the Truro Freightliners (NSMFL) and the CEC Cougars (NSSAFF).

Gabriel is well-decorated in his seven-year career. He is a two-time NSFA offensive MVP in 2012 and 2014. In 2015, he was the NSSAFFL rookie of the year. The following season, he was CEC’s most versatile player. He was a 2016 and 2017 all-star and last season, he was a NSSAFF Division 1 MVP. He has helped lead his team to a NSSAFF Division 1 Tier 2 finals where they beat Halifax West High School.

Gabriel, who is 5’10, 185lbs, has been accepted into the kinesiology program. He plans on majoring in athletic therapy.

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