May 23, 2024

Quick Hits | Training Camp Day 12

Jamieson Sheahan -- photo by Cameron Bartlett

Notes and quotes from Day 12 of Blue Bombers training camp…

Let’s go deep here to begin, with a quote from long-ago Roman emperor-philosopher Marcus Aurelius:

“The happiness of your life depends on the quality of your thoughts.”

So, it’s in that respect Blue Bombers punter Jamieson Sheahan is undoubtedly in a joyful spot as he prepares for a second Canadian Football League season. Sheahan already had a head start in this department, as he not only has a Masters in Education from the University of California, he wrote his thesis on the mental health of student athletes. His wife Alivia, meanwhile, has a Masters in Psychology. And over the winter, not long after last year’s Grey Cup and their marriage, the two decided to go completely off the grid by living in a camper van in the foothills of Santa Barbara, California.

No running water and with their power provided by battery through solar panels, the pair spent the entire offseason walking trails, reading, meditating and getting away from some of the stresses of the outside world right up until he reported to training camp earlier this month.

“We’re lucky in that my brother and sister-in-law have property there and so we were parked up in the mountains overlooking the ocean in Santa Barbara,” said Sheahan in a chat with on Thursday. “So, it was a pretty tough view every morning.”


Now, some of you might have a couple of questions here, the most pressing likely being: ‘What the… ?!’ and ‘Why?’

“Alivia and I are quite salt-of-the-earth people. We don’t need much,” Sheahan explained. “With the timing of me living in Canada for six months a year it’s tough for me to get a six-month rental in the offseason and rent prices in California are out of this world so we saw this opportunity arose and had the means to do it. We decided to go rough for six months, it saves bit on rent and we got to be close to our brother and sister-in-law and their new boy. To be real, we were only 200 metres from our brother-in-law’s house, so if we ever needed any facilities we were right there.

“It’s just a way of life. It was a calming, a healing and rejuvenating offseason. It was a lot of time with nature, a lot of time off the grid, less time plugged in and on our phones. It was about spending quality time with each other and getting back to simple things and a simple life. It gave us a really nice balance in the offseason because when we’re up here for the season it’s go-go-go, it’s intense and there’s a lot of pressure. You’re always switched on. So, this helped balance that out and when I came back up here I felt really prepared.

“I started to meditate more, I kept a daily journal and spent more time in nature, sitting out there in the sun reading a book and finding ways to improve as a person,” he added. “I’m not just a footballer, I’m trying to broaden my scope with the content I’m consuming. Alivia and I are really happy. I think we compliment each other really well. She’s a person who is always striving to make other people’s lives better. I’ve definitely learned that from her. She’s also a very patient person and going off the grid for six months really helped that.”

Sheahan’s first pro season was solid, as he was named the Blue Bombers Most Outstanding Rookie in 2023 after being selected by the club eighth overall in the 2023 CFL Global Draft. A proud product of Bendigo, Australia, Sheahan was recovering from a shoulder injury suffered while playing for the Essendon Bombers of the Australian Football League when he began to consider a career in North American-style football through Prokick Australia’s Nathan Chapman, a former punter with the Green Bay Packers. Within six months he had a scholarship at Cal and in his third year was a second-team All-Pac-12 selection after posting a 45.1-yard average.

Jamieson Sheahan

In his first season in Winnipeg he finished with a 46.3-yard punting average while dropping nine kicks inside the opponents’ 10-yard line – tied for second most in the CFL and a remarkable number given he punted 30-40 times less than the league leaders. Sheahan is also the team’s holder on placekicks. He said his goal for this season is to continue to work on the more traditional spiral punts — he has all the Aussie-style kicks already mastered — while finding more consistency.

“I have really high expectations for myself and I know I can only improve going forward,” said Sheahan. “I’ve already seen the benefits in my football. I’m calmer and smoother and more under control. All that work in the offseason with the meditating, reading and journaling really creates a calmer mind and hopefully a better performance.”

FYI: WRs Kenny Lawler and Drew Wolitarsky were among the vets who took a day off on Thursday, but both aren’t expected to miss significant time… Dante Mastrogiuseppe handled all the field-goal attempts at practice with Sergio Castillo away on a personal matter. Castillo is expected to return on the weekend… The CFL released its broadcast information on Thursday, including the options for fans in the U.S. and around the world. The details can be found here:

Where to Watch: 2024 CFL Broadcast Information

Good batch: Here’s head coach Mike O’Shea when asked about the crop of new receivers in camp: “They’re good. We’ve got a whole handful of guys that are good. Sometimes every few days somebody else rises and there’s always a setback for another guy — unfortunately, that happens — so it is fluid. But any given day you can look out there and guys are making plays and a lot of them. It’s a good crop. It started when you sign these guys and their interest level of getting a headstart on the playbook and coming into camp ready to compete. They’re a very conscientious group.”

Next: The Blue Bombers are back on the field Friday at Princess Auto Stadium from 8:30 a.m.-11:40 a.m. Practice is open to the public.