Jalen Philpot is no stranger to big playoff games, but Sunday will be his first CFL postseason test.
Philpot had a breakout year with the University of Calgary Dinos in 2019 in his second year with 767-yards and eight touchdowns. He led the Dinos in receiving yards in the Vanier Cup game with 116 and added a touchdown as the U of C took down the Montreal Carabins 27-13.
Now, he looks to become a CFL playoff performer starting this weekend in Vancouver when the Stamps face the BC Lions in the West Semi-Final at 2:30 p.m.
“It’s a little bit of a mix of emotions,” Philpot said. “I’m super excited … and obviously a little bit of nerves, it’s the playoffs. I kind of just want to go out there and (play) how I’ve been playing these past couple weeks. Just go out there and make plays, play with speed, play effortlessly, just see everything with my eyes and let it all just come to me.”
Something to add to the excitement is that Philpot is from Delta, B.C. about 30-minutes south of Vancouver.
“Super exciting, especially going home to B.C. for the first playoff game, I don’t think you could really ask for anything better than that,” he added. “My mom bought 30 or 40 tickets, there’s going to be lots of fans there, lots of friends and family that I will get to see before and after the game. A little bit of added pressure, I’m going to have lots of people watching me but I love pressure and I’ve been that kind of guy that performs better under a lot of pressure.”
When it comes to advice and support heading into the games that matter the most, there are plenty of receivers in the room that have been there before for Philpot to lean on.
“Reggie Begelton, Kamar Jorden, two huge guys who have been in the game before, have Grey Cups. They’ve been there, they’ve done that so I’ve made sure, starting today talking to them,” he said. “They gave us a little pep talk and just kind of let us know that it’s on us how difficult we want to make this playoff run. Everyone dive into the film, get ready to go and it will be a little bit easier (as opposed) to if we’re not prepared.”
Jalen isn’t the only Philpot brother to make their first playoff appearance this weekend. His twin brother Tyson will be making his debut with the Montreal Alouettes.
“We definitely have a little wager going on who is going to make it farther so that was the first one and best of luck to Montreal and him, they’ve got a good shot out there too, to see us in the Grey Cup,” Philpot said. “We’re both in the playoffs, it’s (all) we both could have asked for in our rookie year so we’re both just excited.”