By Rob Huizenga, Saint Xavier (Ill.) Sports Information Director
CHICAGO – Saint Xavier (Ill.) former standout quarterback Jimmy Coy (Park Ridge, Ill./Valdosta State/El Camino College/Maine South) signed with the Calgary Stampeders of the Canadian Football League (CFL) Sunday and became the first Cougar football player to sign a professional football contract. The CFL is the highest level of competition in Canadian football, a form of gridiron football closely related to the National Football League (NFL) in the United States. Its eight teams, which are located in eight separate cities throughout Canada, are divided into two divisions of four teams each, the East Division and the West Division. The league’s 19-week regular season runs from late June to early November with each team playing 18 games with a bye week. As per the Stampeders’ policy, terms of Coy’s agreement were not disclosed.
“I am really excited for Jimmy, because his dream is to play professional football and he has worked incredibly hard to get to this point,” said SXU football coach Mike Feminis. “When Jimmy was working out with the Chicago Bears last month, their general manager, Phil Emery, told me how impressed he was with Jimmy and that he wouldn’t be surprised if an opportunity would come up for him in Canada if things didn’t work out right away in the NFL.
“This couldn’t have happened to a nicer young man,” continued Feminis. “In his two years with us, Jimmy represented Saint Xavier University and our program in such a positive manner whether it was in the classroom, on the field or in the community. To have the career he had with us (2011 NAIA National Championship Offensive Player of the Game and 2012 NAIA National Player of the Year) and then to have the chance to play professionally is unbelievable and the icing on the cake. I couldn’t be prouder of Jimmy and I know every member of the SXU football family, from the players to the parents to the alums, are really pulling for him!”
Coy attended a Chicago Bears rookie mini-camp last month after concluding his stellar two-year career at Saint Xavier University last December. He was named 2012 NAIA Football National Player of the Year as well as the 2012 Mid-States Football Association’s (MSFA) Mideast League Player of the Year. Coy ranked third in the country with 3,427 passing yards despite missing two games last fall due to injury. During the 2011 campaign, he earned first-team All-MSFA recognition and led the Cougars to their first national title in any sport completing 347 of 510 passes for 4,261 yards and 42 touchdowns with just 11 interceptions. He also tallied 269 yards and four touchdowns on the ground that year.
The Calgary Stampeders kick off preseason play on Friday, June 14, with a home game against the BC Lions. The regular season slate gets started on Friday, June 28, with another home game against the Lions.