Just a chance.
That’s all Noah Picton wants and he will find out Thursday if a Canadian Football League team is willing to give him one.
The University of Regina quarterback is one of the many athletes across the country who will be hoping to receive a call when teams make their draft picks Thursday.
Born and raised in Regina, Picton has done all he can throughout his University career to prove that he is deserving of a spot on a pro team’s roster. He won the Hec Creighton Award in 2016 as the country’s top player. He’s entering his final year of U Sports eligibility as the Canada-West all-time leading passer with 9,840 yards and is 1,683 away from becoming the nation’s all-time leader.
Picton is 11 touchdowns away from passing Teale Orban for the Canada-West record and 22 from leading the nation in that category as well.
Despite all the success Picton has had, it’s not certain if a CFL team will take a chance on a Canadian quarterback who is undersized for the position.
“I don’t need every team to believe that I can play, you just need one team to take a shot on you,” Picton said. “I think once I get into camp I’d be OK,” Picton told the 980 CJME Morning Show.
While Picton’s hometown Saskatchewan Roughriders already have a Canadian quarterback in the fold — Brandon Bridge — there’s still a chance the green and white may decide to give the pivot a shot.
While talking to media on Wednesday, Riders Head Coach and General Manager Chris Jones commented that Picton is a guy who can go out there and play.
“He’s not the biggest guy in the world but he does make up for it, he’s got a huge heart, he’s a local guy,” Jones said.
Jones noted the current ratio rules do play a factor in drafting someone like Picton as well and they will need to see how the draft unfolds.
If Jones does decide to take the quarterback, Picton said it would be surreal to play for the hometown team and would also give him a chance to once again play with his cousin — wide receiver Mitchell Picton.
“It’d be a pretty special moment for myself and for the whole Picton family I’m sure,” Picton said.
Even if his name doesn’t get called, Noah could still find his way to a CFL training camp as an undrafted free agent.
“I know once I get there I’m confident that I could show well and turn some heads.”
While some players will choose to watch the draft and anxiously wait for their name to get called, Picton said he plans on going out and clearing his head.
“It’d be tough just to kind of sit there and watch every pick go by.”
Picton isn’t the only U of R Ram who might be getting a call from the CFL.
Running back Atlee Simon, who was named the Rams player of the year in 2017, is also on the board.
Along with being the U of R’s leading rusher, Simon is also the school’s all-time leader in Rushing touchdowns with 20 and all-time leader in touchdowns scored with 29. He’s 842 rushing yards away from breaking into the Canada-West all-time top 5.
The draft begins at 6 p.m. Thursday.