Over the last three days from August 1st to August 3rd, the Sault Minor Football League has handed out their 2017 SMFL award recipients. Along with Sault Minor Football League awarding the Len Monico Volunteer Award to young coach Greg Mathison. Aaron Grandinetti and Nathan Kearnen received the 2017 Sault Minor Football League Norm Casola Award that is given to graduating player(s) that have been longtime league members that display hard work, sportsmanship, leadership and respect for the game.
Born and raised in Sault Ste. Marie Casola was a sixth – round draft selection of the Toronto Argonauts in the 1994 Canadian Football League College Draft after playing for the CIS Windsor Lancers. Norm played four seasons with Toronto as a backup receiver and a special teams player. Norm’s life was taken away at the very young age of 29 from cancer, on September 20th, 1998.
Playoff Champs – JBX
MVP – Drew Allison
Playoff champs – Sports Gold Outlaws
MVP – Cooper Foster
Playoff champs – Yardsmart Lions
MVP – Michael Nicolette and Nathan Kearnen
“This league means the world to me. I only do this because I love it, and I only love it because of the people that did the same for me. Playing SMFL was the best seven summers of my life, and I want to share that with every player that comes through the league. Football teaches you many lessons on and off the field and every coach wants to have a positive impact on players. It’s so rewarding to see players you’ve coached move on to the next league and keep enjoying the sport to its fullest potential. I was never the best player by any means, but coaching helps us all remember what being a kid in this league is all about, fun. I can only wish to go back and keep playing, but instead I can only do what’s possible and coach for as long as I can. Hopefully I can put in the same amount of years that guys like Jim Monico, Scott Gray ,Phil Lucchetti, Bonno and many more already have. Thanks for the recognition tonight guys, there’s a whole bunch of people who put in the countless hours for this league that I share this award with tonight” said Matheson.