Get to know 2018 Jr. National Team Linebacker Cole Hepburn
Cole Hepburn is a linebacker from Newmarket, Ontario who will be heading down to Mexico City, Mexico this month to represent Canada at the 2018 World Junior Championships.
Initially, the defensive standout wasn’t into football. However, once he got his first taste of playing the sport, he couldn’t resist falling in love with the sport in grade 7.
“We broke the rule and starting playing tackle football,” he added. “I went home that day and said,” Man, I want to play football.”
Since that time, Hepburn has played for the York Simcoe Bucs of the Ontario Varsity Football League (OVFL) and Bill Crothers Colts of the York Region Athletic Association (YRAA).
Currently, he is with USports team Carleton Ravens where he experienced the highlight of his gridiron career.
“My first university game was a great time,” he added.
Additionally, he represented his province as a member of Team Ontario and his country as a part of Team Canada’s under-19 Junior National Team at the 2018 International Bowl in Arlington, Texas this past January.
“It was great exposure but it was a great experience being able to play against players from down south,” Hepburn reflected of the tournament. “It was just an eye opener.”
“I have never played down south and it was great to be able to match my skills up to them.”
Hepburn’s role models in the sport have been his coaches.
“They are your second family once you spend a lot of time with them, especially being away at school now” he said. “Those are the guys you talk to; you look up to them and want to be like them.”
The linebacker relies on the support and encouragement of his father who has also been a coach to him during his career.
Now on his way to represent Canada at the 2018 IFAF World Junior Championships, Hepburn has a special feeling when it comes to wearing the maple leaf on his jersey.
“You don’t normally get to represent your country every day and it’s like the Olympics and that’s how I am feeling,” he expressed. “It will be interesting to see how the sport has grown not just in Canada and the US but also all over the world.”
This post is also available in: French