Surrey’s Jonathan Kongbo in action with Tennessee Volunteers. (Photo:

Surrey football player tops CFL draft prospects list

Former Holy Cross school student Jonathan Kongbo currently playing in Tennessee

The top prospect eligible for the 2019 CFL draft is a defensive lineman from Surrey.

Jonathan Kongbo, currently with the Tennessee Volunteers of the American college circuit, tops a list published Thursday by the Canadian Football League Scouting Bureau.

The list highlights the first of three rankings to be published between now and the league’s 2019 draft.

“In two seasons with the Tennessee Volunteers, Kongbo has appeared in 24 games, starting in 12,” says a player profile posted to “Through 24 games he’s amassed 40 tackles (15 solo, 25 assisted), 5.5 tackles for a loss and 3.5 sacks.

“Kongbo, a native of Surrey, B.C. also notched a interception versus Missouri that he returned 59 yards for a touchdown. Prior to going to the University of Tennessee Kongbo attended Wyoming as a freshman where he red-shirted. Following that he went to Arizona Western College (JUCO) where he played a season and was rated the number one JUCO prospect.”

• RELATED STORY: Surrey football star ‘King Kongbo’ going to the U of Tennessee, from 2016.

Kongbo, who didn’t play football until his Grade 12 year at Holy Cross Regional High School in Surrey, became the top junior college prospect in the U.S. at Arizona Western Community College, in Yuma, Ariz.

Born in the Democratic Republic of the Congo, Kongbo moved to Canada as a child when his family’s security was compromised by a civil war in that central African country. Born in 1996, he’s the son of Joachim and Lily Kongbo.

CLICK HERE to read Kongbo’s player profile on the Tennessee Athletics website.

Laval’s Mathieu Betts, a defensive lineman from Montreal, and Connecticut receiver Hergy Mayala, also from Montreal, round out the top-three gridiron prospects announced Thursday.

The CFL’s Scouting Bureau is comprised of scouts, player personnel directors and general managers from the league’s nine teams. The next edition of the list comes in December, followed by the final list in April following the National Scouting Combine.

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