After graduation in June Matt Stackhouse will be heading to Calgary to play Junior football.
The Grade 12 student at Sacred Heart High School recently attended the spring camp of the Calgary Colts of the Prairie Football Conference.
“I was the only one (at camp) from Yorkton,” said Stackhouse, who added he had tried out with the Regina Thunder but when that didn’t work out, he headed west to the try-out with the Colts.
In Calgary Stackhouse was hoping to make the team as a receiver, but also took reps as a kicker, where he impressed the Calgary brass to earn a spot.
Stackhouse said kicking has not been something he has put a lot of effort into.
“I just happen to be good at it. I’ve never really practiced,” he said.
Now with the Colts wanting him to kick Stackhouse said his attitude about the role is changing.
“I’m starting to realize my potential as a kicker,” he said.
The key to kicking, beyond leg strength and mechanics is staying positive.
If a field goal is missed, Stackhouse said you can’t leave that miss rolling around in your head, or it will impact the next kick too, usually in a bad way.
“You’ve just got to envision making the kick between the posts, that you’re going to it,” he said.
While Stackhouse made the Colts, which start play in mid-August, he also hopes to see some time at receiver, the position he has always wanted to play the most. He said growing up he played the video game Madden NFL where he would create a receiver and put his name on it.
“It’s my favourite position to play,” he said.
Whether as receiver or kicker, Stackhouse said he is starting to think about football more seriously. For example after some Junior time, he said he can now see football being a pathway to college.
And, beyond college there is the Canadian Football League.
“I’m starting to think about that every day now,” he said, adding “putting on a ‘Rider jersey … would be a dream come true.”