By Ned Bekavac
Local linebacker Ron Nolan has called an audible on his football future.
Seemingly a lock to don the purple and gold uniform of the Wilfrid Laurier Golden Hawks next season, Nolan instead will sport the purple and white duds of the Western Mustangs.
Nolan and his St. James high school football teammate Ron Kinga, both District 10 all-stars, were to sign for the Hawks in November.
While Kinga has committed to Laurier, Nolan has changed his plans after being won over by Western.
“Western insisted I come there for a visit and I just really liked what they had to offer,” said Nolan, at last week’s District 10 football awards luncheon at Cutten Fields.
“Once I got to see everything there, it kind of changed my mind.”
Nolan said last week that some schools are still talking to him, but that he’s “100 per cent going to Western.”
In the classroom, Western has the business management program that Nolan really wanted to be part of.
On the football field, the Mustangs, coached by Guelph’s Greg Marshall – Nolan says Marshall is “pretty familiar” with his family – is a team that Nolan is particularly fond of.
“I love their football program, and it’s just where I wanted to be,” says Nolan.
He’s working hard to make a big impression – figuratively and literally – when he arrives at the London, Ont., school.
Already a Hulk-like 6-foot-3 and 218 pounds, Nolan is continuing to hit the weights hard in an effort to put on even more muscle.
He would be quite happy to hit the 225-pound mark and is working out seven days a week. Every week.
No days off?
“No,” says Nolan, who is finished at St. James after this semester and will have even more time to hit the gym.
The all-star linebacker is asked what it’s like joining Western, the team everyone seems to love to hate.
“Being in Guelph and talking about it, some people will throw some chirps, but that’s alright,” he says, with a laugh.
“It’s going to be competitive and that’s what it’s all about.”