Brent Urban grew up playing hockey, but he decided to give football a try when he was in Grade 10. That put him on a path to play college ball.
Just a few years ago, he was playing for the team at Lorne Park Secondary School in Mississauga.
Today, the six-foot-seven, 298-pound Urban is a defensive tackle on the football team at the University of Virginia.
By the end of the weekend, he is hoping to be a bona fide NFL draft pick.
"I’m definitely a little bit anxious," said Urban, who turned 23 this week.
His mother, Ann Urban, marvels at how far her son has come.
It was just five years ago that he was playing in front of no more than 100 people at his high school. Down in Virginia, the games he plays in draw as many as 70,000 fans.
"It’s surreal," his mother told CBC News in an interview.
He was already drafted into the CFL by the Hamilton Tiger-Cats last year, but he chose to stay in school so that he could take a shot at getting into the NFL.
Click on the video above to see a full report from the CBC's Shannon Martin on this Canadian athlete’s NFL dreams.