BRANDON SMITH WINS PRESIDENTS' RING
The Calgary Stampeders are pleased to announce that defensive back Brandon Smith is the recipient of the team’s Presidents’ Ring award for 2019.
The Presidents’ Ring has been presented annually since 1967 to the Stampeders player who best demonstrates excellence on and off the field as voted by the players. Candidates are judged on their in-game contributions, leadership, inspiration and motivational skills.
“It’s an honour to be voted as the winner of this award by my teammates and peers, especially in the final year of my career,” said Smith. “This award means a lot and will give me a good memory of all my years of being a Stampeder. I thank the coaching staff and my teammates for giving me the opportunity to lead by example.”
In his 12th and final season with the Stampeders – Smith has announced his decision to retire at season’s end – the Oakland, Calif., product was once again one of the key members of Calgary’s defensive unit. In 16 games, he recorded 59 defensive tackles, one special-teams tackle, two interceptions including a pick-six, one fumble recovery and four knockdowns.
The Stamps led the CFL in interceptions in 2019 and earned a playoff berth for a 15th consecutive year.
Smith, who is serving as one of the team captains in 2019, played 174 regular-season games for the Red and White, good for 14th place on the franchise’s all-time list. He is 15th in CFL history with 159 career defensive tackles and he is one of just three players to win three Grey Cups as a member of the Stampeders.
In addition to his on-field exploits, Smith has been active in the community, most notably as the team’s spokesperson for the Every Yard Counts program, which features player visits to the Alberta Children’s Hospital the day before every Stampeders home game.
“Brandon is a quality person and an outstanding player who has been an important contributor to our success during his long career,” said Stampeders president and general manager John Hufnagel. “Brandon has always been a teammate who prefers to lead by example and I’m very pleased that his teammates have chosen to honour him with the Presidents’ Ring award.”
Hall-of-Famer Wayne Harris was the first winner of the Presidents’ Ring and 35 different men have been presented with the award. Henry Burris, Danny Barrett and Stu Laird each won the award on three occasions while two-time winners are Rob Cote, Keon Raymond, Jay McNeil, Alondra Johnson, Wayne Harris, Allen Pitts, Lloyd Fairbanks, Bernie Morrison, Ed McAleney, James Sykes, Willie Burden and Jerry Keeling.