Kingston boy goes east, commits to St. FX

St. FX welcomes their first 2017 commit.

To state the obvious, Ontario and Nova Scotia are two very different provinces, one a landlocked chunk of country surrounded by Quebec and the United States, and the other a peninsula on the Atlantic Ocean. After committing to the St. Francis Xavier X-Men, Devon Parris, a defensive back from Frontenac Secondary School, will get to experience this difference in person.

It may be a little bit of a shock going from Kingston, Ontario, town of over 100,000 people to Antigonish, Nova Scotia, whose population is almost on par with that of the resident university, St. FX. Parris, however, wouldn’t necessarily agree that bigger is better.

“I really felt that St. FX had everything I was looking for,” he said. “I really loved the size of the campus and the sense of school pride I felt from the people I met.”

The 6’1, 180lbs Frontenac Falcon (Kingston Area Secondary School Athletics Association) was also drawn to the school because of its coaching staff, who he said were always honest and open with him. “I really lied that the coaches started building a relationship with me early in the recruiting process. They were very welcoming and made me feel like St. FX would be a great home away from home,” Parris said.

“I’m really excited to be working with the coaching staff for the next few years,” he added.

The feeling from the coaches is mutual.

“We are very excited to have Devon Parris join our football family. He is our first commit of 2017 and we could not have chosen a better person to kick-off our class. He fits the outstanding student-athlete with high character profile that we are seeking,” Head Coach Gary Waterman said.

Bob Mullen, the team’s defensive coordinator, held the same type of praise for the team’s newest member. “Devon has proven himself to be a U Sports ready prospect with a track record of success. We are looking forward to working with him,” Mullen said.

Devon Parris hikes it down the field. Courtesy of Devon Parris.

Devon Parris hikes it down the field. Courtesy of Devon Parris.

Parris, who has been playing football for eight years, has also suited up with the Kinston Grenadiers (Ontario Varsity Football League). In 2014 and 2015, he won the Senior KASSAA championships with the Falcons. He also won the OFSAA championships in 2014 and will be heading there again on Monday. This summer, he and the Grenadiers were OVFL finalists. He was also selected to the 2016 OVFL senior all-star team.

“Devon brings athleticism and length to our defensive backfield. One of our current players, safety Dylan Bell, had an opportunity to coach Devon this past summer with the Grenadiers and had nothing but positive feedback about him as a player and a person,” Dave Van Den Heuvel, the recruitment coordinator, said.

He added that Parris is a strong student who will be pursuing a history degree while attending the university. The young football player also has family ties to Nova Scotia and St. FX.

Steve Snyder, the team’s offensive coordinator, echoed similar sentiments as his coaching peers. “Devon is our kind of guy. We have enjoyed recruiting him for a few years now, really excited as we feel it’s the perfect fit,” he said.

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