Ready, sept, go: Montreal Alouettes sign seven players

Photo courtesy: Dominick Gravel/Montreal Alouettes

The Montreal Alouettes have signed seven players, including national offensive lineman Samuel Thomassin, American defensive back Prince Smith Jr., American receiver Craig Rucker, American offensive lineman Tyler Roemer, nation receiver Ente Eguavoen, national defensive back Ethan Makonzo, and national defensive lineman Brock Gowanlock.

Thomassin played his first professional season in 2021, dressing for two games with the Alouettes. He was selected by Montreal with a territorial pick at the end of the second round of the 2019 CFL Draft and then took part in the team’s training camp.

The Laval product returned to play a final collegiate season in 2019 and helped the Rouge et Or reach the Dunsmore Cup after helping the team win the previous two Vanier Cups. The 26-year-old Quebec City native was a first team All-Canadian in his last two seasons after being selected a second team All-Canadian in 2017.

The six-foot-six, 330-pound blockers was part of an offensive line that helped the Rouge et Or score a conference-leading 301 points in 2019.

Smith Jr. took part in the Alouettes’ training camp in 2021. Prior to that, he made 64 tackles for the New Hampshire University Wildcats in 2019, which was good for third place on the team. The Philadelphia native also intercepted three passes and forced two fumbles. He was part of the Philadelphia Eagles, New York Giants, and Cleveland Browns in 2020.

Rucker took part in training camp with the Toronto Argonauts in 2021. The receiver made 97 catches for 1,325 yards and 15 touchdowns with the Mars Hill University Lions in 2019, earning South Atlantic Conference Offensive Player of the Year Awards. The Orlando native is the conference’s all-time leader with 4,320 receiving yards and 43 receiving touchdowns.

Roemer joined the Oakland Raiders in 2019 following a solid career at left tackle at San Diego State University. In 2020, six-foot-six, 315-pound blocker played four games with the Los Angeles Wildcats in the XFL.

Eguavoen was voted a 2021 OUA first team all-star as he made 31 catches for 523 yards and two touchdowns in only six games with the Laurier University Golden Hawks. The Mississauga, Ont. native also returned kicks during two seasons, generating 546 yards on 25 kickoff returns.

Makonzo played eight games with the Université de Montreal Carabins in 2021, registering 12 tackles and knocking down one pass. In 2019, the 26-year-old intercepted two passes and amassed six solo tackles and five assisted tackles, which allowed him to be selected to the RSEQ defensive all-star team.

Gowanlock was in training camp with Montreal in 2021 but returned to the University of Manitoba for his final U Sports season. He registered 38 tackles, including 5.5 for losses, as well as four sacks in eight games with the Bisons. The native of Duncan, B.C. was selected in the eighth round, 66th overall, by the Alouettes in the 2020 CFL Draft.