Emmanuel Drame will be a new face in the soccer lineup this season for the UNBC Timberwolves but he's already well-accustomed to student life on the Cranbrook Hill campus.
The six-foot-two defender has been in Prince George studying political science at UNBC since the start of the semester in January after transferring from Red Deer College. Drame, a native of Passama, Liberia, moved to Canada from Ghana two years ago and he's looking forward to demonstrating his soccer skills on the pitch in Prince George.
"Soccer has been part of my life since age five," said Drame, in a UNBC release. "It's something that came to me naturally. In Africa, we didn't really take into account the technical aspect of the game, so it was just physically raw talent manifesting itself."
Drame has had a few months to watch his teammates play indoor soccer at the Northern Sport Centre and likes what he's sees in a team looking to improve on last year's 1-10-1 finish.
"The program here and the level of commitment I've seen is way different," he said. "Here, the training is year-round, which is good for the entire team."
The T-wolves have seen what Drame in action on the indoor field and they've gotten to know him, making him feel welcome.
"It's much more like a bunch of brothers right now," he said. "Having guys like Gordon (Hall) and Josh (McAvoy), and then Tofa (Fakunle), Francesco (Bartolillo), Darin (Kamsteeg)... They keep checking up on me. All the guys have been pretty helpful in helping me settle in."
The Timberwolves allowed 30 goals in 12 games in 2015 and head coach Steve Simonson says the addition of Drame will help the team improve on that statistic.
"He has brought an incredible presence at the back for us and will be a great boost to our back four," Simonson said. "He has a great composure with the ball at his feet which will mesh well with the playing philosophy of the team. He has gelled with the team quite well and has a really likable personality. I am looking forward to seeing his first season in our squad."