A much-improved effort on the field as a team in 2013 resulted in some national recognition for three members of the Okanagan Sun.
Offensive lineman Devon Kozar, and defensive backs Jack Rush and Brennan Van Nistelrooy were named this week to the CJFL’s all-Canadian team.
The 22-year-old Kozar was one of 13 players named on the offensive side of the ball.
A native of Portage la Prairie, Man., Kozar, who has graduated from the Sun, made the transition from the defensive line to the offensive line prior to the start of the BCFC’s regular season.
“The award is well-deserved, Devon is an unselfish player who worked his butt off,” said Sun head coach Shane Beatty. “He made a seamless transition from the D-line to the O-line and I don’t remember him giving up a sack. Devon played the game with passion and intelligence and was a great leader for us. The award is well-earned.”
Rush, 22, and Van Nistelrooy, 20, were among 12 players named on defense.
Rush, a native Niagara Falls, Ont., who graduates from the program, had 33 tackles, four interceptions and a touchdown in 2013.
“Jack was a leader on defense, he was the smartest guy out there and made sure everybody knew their jobs,” said Sun defensive coordinator Nathan Mollard. “He was very physical and led by example. We’re going to miss Jack.”
Van Nistelrooy, a native of Lethbridge, tallied 24 tackles, a sack, two blocked kicks and a pair of interceptions.
Van Nistelrooy, who played as a rookie in the BCFC in 2011, returned to the Sun this summer after a season with the University of Alberta.
“We knew we were lucky when Brennan came back to us,” said Mollard. “He’s a special kid who picks up stuff right away. He excelled for us and could do anything out there on the field. He’s a hell of an athlete.”