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Daniel Adeboboye: He's Fast and The Argos Agree

Interview

This is part of Northern Notables, a collection of interviews with NSS Alumni who have made an impact in their personal and professional lives.

by Joe Pascucci

Daniel Adeboboye is living out his childhood dream these days. The 23 year old former Northern Secondary School star running back is now a rookie at the training camp of the Toronto Argonauts. The Argos are the team Adeboboye grew up watching on TV and attending their games.
 “I’d go to Argos games when they were playing at SkyDome,” Adedboboye fondly recalled with a huge smile, “I loved the Argos back then and that love has grown. Now I get to play for the team that I used to watch as a little kid.”

The Argos drafted Adeboboye 15th overall at the recent CFL Draft. “We feel he has got a future and we want him to him to be here for while,” said Argos Head Coach Ryan Dinwiddie. “He really impressed me at the combine with his pass protection and his interviews and that’s when he really won me over.”
Interview continues below
Daniel Adeboboye
Adeboboye: (1) recognized by NSS Athletics (2) in Bryant University gear drafted by The Argos, Pick 15 (3) holding his new Argos helmet
Back in February the Argos signed Canadian free agent running back Andrew Harris – the Argos need home grown players to back up the veteran who is destined to be inducted into the Canadian Football Hall of Fame once his playing days are done.

“When I was a young kid I was watching [Harris] play on TV being a star. Now I’m on the same team as him,” a gushing Adeboboye told me at the conclusion of a recent Argos practice. “He’s been nothing but help for me, giving me tips, pushing me, being a great leader. He’s a great football player and he’s an even better person too.”

Adeboboye attended Grades nine, ten and eleven at Northern and the 2015 football season is one he will never forget. “We went undefeated in grade ten, and winning the Junior Championship was awesome because that was the first time we’d won a junior championship in 10 to 12 years.” 

Daniel led the Junior Red Knights in the championship final against rival North Toronto, scoring four touchdowns in the 41 to 12 victory.

Daniel's acceleration and speed on display during his freshman year at Northern:

Daniel Adeboboye's acceleration and speed.
Unfortunately a sprained ankle kept Adeboboye out of the lineup for most of his first year in Northern Senior football and it was after Grade 11 that he decided he needed to test himself further, heading stateside to ‘The Hill’, a prep school in Pennsylvania where he was selected Team MVP in his freshman and sophomore seasons.

“Not only was I going to get a good education, I was going there to get better exposure in football. I was going to be playing against all Americans, way better competition. I wanted to get better in all aspects of my life, whether it was school or football. It was a tough decision to go away from home, leave my family and venture off on my own, but in the long run I think it paid off.” 
From ‘The Hill’ the next stop on Adeboboye’s football journey was Bryant University in Smithfield, Rhode Island where he also stood out – Daniel had over 1,800 career rushing yards and 16 rushing touchdowns for the Bulldogs.
"Ever since I started playing football I’ve been the starting running back on my team. My freshman year in [at Bryant] I actually wasn’t the starting back. I had to work my way there."
–  Daniel Adeboboye
Family is very important to Daniel. His father Dr. Tai Adeboboye is the lead paster at the Wilmar Heights Baptist Church in Scarborough. He has two brothers and a sister and they all attended Northern. “We have pretty strong faith and that’s just something we have as a family.”

Right now Adeboboye is concentrating on making the Argos and getting his chance in the upcoming exhibition games to impress the coaches and his teammates. “I’m around guys who are going to be in the hall of fame one day. I’m in a blessed position and if my season is me learning from all those legends I’ve had a good season. Playing for my hometown team – I couldn’t have asked for anything better.”

LINKS

Interviewer Joe Pascucci NSS'76 is a veteran sports journalist and was inducted into the Canadian Football Hall of Fame in 2015. With professional roots in Winnipeg, stretching back to 1982 when he was a sports reporter for Winnipeg’s CKND-TV, Joe has freelanced for ESPN and TSN, and was Sports Director for Global Winnipeg from 1986 until 2014. Joe became a CFL historian of note by compiling a celebratory video of the Winnipeg Blue Bombers' history, producing videos for Bombers Hall of Fame inductions, and transferring to video key historical moments from the 1930s to '70s, including matching grainy footage of the Bombers’ 1939 Grey Cup victory with a CBC radio broadcast. Joe is a Director of the Northern Secondary School Foundation.