UofT a ‘young’ and ‘hungry’ team

Toronto adds two local commits and one out-of-province commit to their 2019 class.

Running backs Ricardo Chisholm from Northern Secondary and Samuel Conteh from Etobicoke Collegiate Institute will be able to play in front of their biggest supporters after signing with the University of Toronto Varsity Blues.

Defensive lineman Keenan Dell from Marion M. Graham Collegiate will also be joining the Varsity Blues.

Ricardo Chisholm

Courtesy of Ricardo Chisholm.

Ricardo Chisholm is staying put in the city he played his entire career in. “They have an amazing facility (and there is) the opportunity to come in and make a difference in my first year,” Chisholm said of his commitment.

He added that the school appealed to him because he will be “around a young team where everyone is hungry to get better and grow as a team” and will eventually have “the opportunity to play in front of friends and family in my home city.”

The coaches also played a role in his decision. He said they made him feel “very comfortable and at home. I like the goals they have for the team and the steps they’re planning to implement to achieve them.”

In 2017, the 5’8, 165lbs athlete played with the Toronto Jets. The next season he played with the Toronto Jr. Argos (OFC). He also played with the Northern Red Knights (TDSSAA) from 2015 to 2018. Chisholm, who is interested in kinesiology, was ‘male athlete of the year’ from 2015 to 2018. He also received an offensive MVP award and athletic letter in 2017. He is also an honour roll student for the past four years.

“I thank God for this opportunity,” Chisholm said. “I give a huge thanks to my coaches, Coach Lombardi, Coach Gana, Coach Gaw, Coach T. Gates, Coach G. Gretes, Coach Dominco and Dale Callender, and my family and all my teammates for pushing me to continue to improve my skills.”

Samuel Conteh

Samuel Conteh was born in Sierra Leone and, at the age of two, he and his family moved to Canada where they settled in Etobicoke, Ontario. It’s safe to say that family played a role in his commitment.

“I chose to commit to the University of Toronto because they had everything I wanted in terms of schooling, comfortability, team, social life, area and, most of all, it gave me the chance to be near my family,” Conteh said.

By Mary Schetakis.

“I did want to go further, but ultimately the thought of having my parents and family members at my games really pushed me to stay.”

In terms of academics, Conteh said he is interested in becoming a teacher. “I was inspired by my own teacher and coach, so I was looking into the arts and science programs, which have more range in terms of choices,” he said. “The school itself is amazing, one of the top schools in Canada with every type of resource I could want.”

Conteh added that the team really cares about academics and puts it first. “When it comes to student-athletes, I could see they really take care of their athletes, so that also really attracted me to stay,” he said.

When he spoke about coaches, Conteh was honest when he said he doesn’t know the coaching staff really well right now. But he said he wants “to get to know them more as I begin to really start becoming a part of the program.”

In his first interaction with the coaches, Conteh said he felt they were genuine and wanted him to succeed as an athlete, student and person.

Standing at 5’8, 190lbs, Conteh began his career with the Etobicoke Eagles (OPFL) before joining the Etobicoke CI Rams (TDSSAA). He has won a few MVP awards and was an OFSAA champion in 2016. “The biggest one that I will remember is an OFSAA Bowl championship,” he said. “That was one of the best feelings to see all our hard work finally pay off.”

With the new season fast approaching, Conteh said, “Overall, I’m just excited to finally get a chance to play at university. It’s been a dream of mine ever since I came into high school and to be able to play in Toronto, my home, is just the best feeling.”

Keenan Dell

Keenan Dell will be travelling to Toronto from his hometown of Saskatoon, Saskatchewan. The 6’2, 220lbs defensive tackle played with the Marion Graham Falcons (SSSAD).

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