University of Regina Rams products Mimbs, Sombach pumped and prepared for CFL combine

Darrell Davis, Regina Leader-Post

D’Sean Mimbs and Jackson Sombach can’t be any more ready.

“I’ve been training pretty hard for this,” said Mimbs. “I’d say I’m in the best shape I’ve ever been in.”

Mimbs and Sombach, teammates with the University of Regina Rams, are among 100 football players expected in Winnipeg this week for the CFL combine. The players get tested, measured and interviewed by general managers, coaches and scouts in preparation for the CFL college and import drafts on April 30.

“It’s the best football shape I’ve ever been in,” said Sombach. “It’s not the lightest I’ve ever been, but it’s the most athletic and comfortable, I feel, for my frame to put a good performance on the field this week.

“It’s a good mix. I’m not too skinny; I’m kind of thick right now so it kind of makes up for my height, so I can play in the box a bit more.”

At 5-foot-9 and 195 pounds, Sombach is undersized for a professional defensive back. One of four brothers playing for the Rams, he will need to show during one-on-one drills that he can play closer to the line of scrimmage to stop running backs in “the box.”

Through 25 games over four Canada West seasons, Sombach has made 70 defensive tackles, progressed to become a conference all-star in 2022 and last year played in the East-West Bowl.

“I’m a bit nervous but more excited than anything,” said Sombach, who was one of eight players added to the combine after excelling at an earlier evaluation. “I’m pretty good at staying relaxed and being able to chill out. The flight here was delayed and we got here late last night, but it’s good we came a day early so we get acquainted with the place, get yourself settled and get ready for the big weekend ahead.”

Mimbs is 6-foot-1 and 180 pounds, a breakaway receiver in 20 games through three seasons while catching 79 passes for 1,134 yards and eight touchdowns. He also returned 14 kickoffs for 287 yards and was chosen for last year’s East-West Bowl.

“The first two things they’ll notice are my speed and explosiveness,” said Mimbs. “And I’d say everyone’s probably nervous. But once you get that first drop out of the way, that lets you come back to normal, just like you’re playing a game or training any other day.”

Before going to Winnipeg, they got advice about the combine from numerous teammates, such as former Ram DB Jaxon Ford, who was drafted in the second round last year by the Saskatchewan Roughriders. And although they have never roomed together on Rams road trips — most teams pair offensive players or defensive players together — Mimbs and Sombach are roomies during the combine.

The players have evidently been working hard for the physical part of the combine. But during virtual media conferences earlier this week, most of the CFL coaches and general managers said they were especially looking forward to interviewing the players to find out what they were like as students, athletes and individuals.

Preparing for that aspect of the camp is different.

“Our coach, Mark McConkey, gave us a bunch of pre-interview questions we could go over; my agent sent me some, too,” said Mimbs. “I don’t know if there’s really any way to prep though, because you have no idea what they’ll actually ask you. So I’ve been telling myself to be confident in everything I say.”

So what will the teams find out while interviewing Mimbs?

“Probably just the type of player I am,” he said. “Aggressive to the ball, love making spectacular catches and I’m also smart on the field and like reading coverages.”

And Sombach?

“I’m a hard-working dude,” he said. “I want to do anything for a team and my height doesn’t really define me. I’m very athletic, physical and I’ll let my play speak for itself.”