Taylor Renaud’s dreams are coming true — again.
On Jan. 17, the Winnipeg Blue Bombers announced they’d signed the Winnipegger.
The 26-year-old receiver for the Acadia University Axemen got the call in early December, making his Christmas and his Dec. 22 birthday extra special.
"I’m really excited," Renaud said. "Growing up, Winnipeg was always the team I dreamt of playing for. I can’t really see myself playing anywhere else. It’s really a dream come true."
This is not the first time Renaud has sampled the turf at Investors Group Field. In summer 2013 Renaud attended the Bombers’ training camp, made the team, but was then released after injuring his hamstring.
"I’m all good to go now," Renaud said. "I played a full season at school and didn’t have any issues and right now I’m just preparing and am ready to go. My body is back up to 100% and I’m feeling motivated and ready to roll."
At Acadia University in Wolfville, N.S. Renaud graduated with a business degree in May 2013 and entered the School of Education to round out his fifth year of eligibility. He said he will put his two–year education degree on hold while the Bombers play and will finish it in the off season.
Growing up in River Heights, Renaud attended St. Paul’s High School and played for the Crusaders. He said he will definitely go back for a visit.
"They hold a camp in August and I’m looking forward to coming back and helping coach the receivers," Renaud said. "Looking back, I’d definitely want to give back to that school, I’ve gotten so much from it. However they need my help, I’m available."
Renaud said he credits a lot of his success to St. Paul’s.
"They instilled a work ethic in me," Renaud said. "Growing up it was tough because the school work was tough. At the time I wasn’t the happiest about it but looking back, it prepared me for university. That school prepares you for success."
Renaud will finish this semester at Acadia in five weeks, then he’ll fly home and start using the facilities at Investors Group Field to prepare for training camp. While in Winnipeg, he’ll be living at home with his parents, at least for a little while.
"Mom and dad were really excited to have me back," Renaud said.
Renaud said football has always been important to his family. His grandfather, Mo Renaud, was a longtime public announcer for the Blue Bombers, and his father also played.
"I did a lot of sports growing up but it’s always been my dream," Renaud said. "I didn’t get a real taste of it till high school and I really fell in love with it."
Renaud said it’s the discipline and hard work of football that keeps him coming back for more.
"When you’re on the field there’s not really a better feeling than that," Renaud said. "Being around teammates and feeling he bond, it brought out the best in me."