B.C. Lions sign American defensive backs Manny Rugamba and Mallory Claybourne

Photo courtesy: Miami RedHawks

The B.C. Lions have signed American defensive backs Manny Rugamba and Mallory Claybourne.

The 23-year-old Rugamba attended 2021 training camp with the Cleveland Browns after becoming the first Rwandan to sign with an NFL team.

He began his NCAA career at the University of Iowa and recorded 55 total tackles, two interceptions, two fumble recoveries and one forced fumble in 22 games from 2016-2017.

Rugamba then transferred to Miami University for his final three years of eligibility. After missing 2018 due to transfer rules, he would record 96 total tackles, 65 total, 31 assisted, 11 pass knockdowns, two interceptions and one forced fumble.

He was named Defensive MVP of the 2019 Mid-American Conference Championship with 11 defensive tackles as the RedHawks took down Central Michigan University. Rugamba also earned third-team All-MAC honours in both seasons with the program.

The 23-year-old Claybourne played his first two years of eligibility as a receiver at Lackawanna College, hauling in 22 receptions for 360 yards and one touchdown while chipping in on special teams with 17 tackles.

The Pittsburgh, PA native transferred to Coastal Carolina University for his final three years and made the switch to defensive back, recording 85 tackles, 57 total, 28 assisted, six pass knockdowns, one interception and one fumble recovery in 23 games. He was named a preseason Sun Belt all-Conference all-star in 2019.