Photo courtesy of Joanna Kurowski Photography
The London Beefeaters open their 2023 Spring Camp this weekend with high expectations after playing in the Ontario Conference final last season.
Second year head coach Matt Snyder has been busy recruiting and is excited to get back on the field expecting 90-110 players for Spring Camp on Saturday. There is a nice mix of veteran and new recruits that are both local and from across the province that will attend camp.
This weekend will build upon the already 12 off season workouts that the Beefeaters have held since January. However, due to the limited space they focused on skill development during this time so this weekend will be first to install some actual plays. “Our plan on Saturday is to introduce our base system on both offence and defence,” says Snyder. “This is our initial family of plays that serve as the foundation for future installs and ensures we can lean on these plays during our summer workouts before training camp starts.”
The Beefeaters have elected to run a one-day spring camp to ensure the maximum number of players can attend without travel issues. It is unique but it works for their club so to not interfere with a very popular summer football program in the area. They plan to hold two practices on Saturday, then a systems walk thru and finish by playing a modified scrimmage.
They are coming off another successful season in the Ontario Conference in 2022 finishing 6-2 with the second stingiest defence allowing 16 points a game. They anticipate to have about 90% of their expected 2023 roster in attendance on Saturday.
They will open the season on August 12th when they visit the Ottawa Sooners, the team they eliminated last year in a Conference semi-final. Their home opener will be played on August 20th when they host the Hamilton Hurricanes.
The CJFL in conjunction with the Ontario Conference (OFC) have released their 2023 schedule that will see the six-member Conference open the CJFL season the weekend of August 12, 2023 with a full slate of games
The defending Conference champion St. Clair Saints begin their title defence that evening at 7:00pm when they host the Quinte Skyhawks. Earlier that day the London Beefeaters visit the Ottawa Sooners at 4:00pm at Lee’s Stadium in an Ontario Conference semi-final rematch to officially open the Conference season. Then on August 13th the GTA Grizzlies entertain the Hamilton Hurricanes in a matinee at 1:00pm.
The teams are scheduled to play an eight-week regular season concluding on October 1st. The Conference playoffs will open on October 14th, following the Thanksgiving bye weekend with a pair of semi-finals before the Conference championship game scheduled for Saturday October 21st.
The winner of the Ontario final will travel to the Prairie Conference in the CJFL National Semi-Final on Saturday October 28th. The winner of that game will travel to BC for the 2023 Canadian Bowl.
Photo courtesy of Boris Terzic
Teams in the Ontario Conference need to prepare themselves because London Beefeaters’ running LJ Dyer set to return in 2023.
Last season was his first in the CJFL and he made an immediate impact as a playmaker in all three facets of the game. He did most of his damage in the backfield, leading the Conference with 90 carries as one half of a two-headed monster teamed with Taz Bell. Dyer galloped to 512 yards, second only to Bell and shared the Conference lead with six rushing touchdowns.
He was a threat leaking out of the backfield to become a receiver as well as returning kicks on special teams. As a matter of fact he returned six kick offs, one of them in Ottawa sprinting 105 yards all the way to the endzone for the longest play in Ontario last season. He averaged over 31-yards with each kick return.
The Beefeaters are excited to have LJ Dyer back in the fold this season as a member of the Class of 2023.
Enjoy his highlights...