For 10 years, Nick Grossi has had one dream: to earn an NCAA scholarship. That goal was realized last week after he received a football offer from Simon Fraser University (SFU).
“My plan was to use my athletics to pay for my schooling,” said Nick, the 5’11”, 225 lb., linebacker from Bolton, Ont.
“Without question, Nick has fully earned this opportunity,” said Varsity Football Head Coach, Len Gurr. “He has been an excellent two-year starter and an impact member of our defence. He plays the game with tremendous passion and enthusiasm.”
When asked what he’s excited for next year, Nick said, “I am most looking forward to playing an NCAA schedule and travelling the west coast, lining up against some top U.S. talent. I believe if I work hard enough I can make a push to play in my second year.”
“He is a committed athlete when it comes to his offseason strength and conditioning work,” said Coach Gurr. And that has been evident through his 13 football seasons, five in high school and eight summer league teams. This year was Nick’s self-professed best year yet. He finished the SAC season with 44 tackles, one interception, five quarterback sacks, and two swatted passes – all in just seven games!
Inspiration and motivation can come from anywhere. Nick’s grandfather had always been his biggest fan, until his passing in November. “He always wanted to see me succeed and would have loved to see what I have accomplished,” Nick said. On the field, Nick is inspired by Carolina Panthers linebacker, Luke Keuchly. “He has been my idol since he started in the NFL. He is such an elite player and I model my style of play after him. He’s in every play and is an impact player on the field.”
Nick decided SFU was right for him because of its great academic reputation. And he is excited about experiencing life on the west coast – somewhere he has never been before. Nick hasn’t decided on his major yet, but is leaning toward computer science or business.
You can catch this three-term athlete at the La Brier Family Arena this winter playing hockey for the Varsity B Saints, or see him in action with our Varsity Rugby team in the spring.
“Our football program is very proud of Nick,” said Coach Gurr, “and we look forward to following his progress in the years to come.”
Story by Nicolette Fleming