In der NLA des Schweizerischen American Football ist es üblich, dass ein oder mehere Spieler aus dem Ausland verpflichtet werden, um die Teams zu verstärken. Auf diese Weise ermöglichen es auch die Bern Grizzlies Weise jungen und hoffnungsvollen Nachwuchstalenten vornehmlich aus Nordamerika, ihre Leidenschaft weiterhin auszuüben und gleichzeitig hier in Europa eine neue Kultur kennenzulernen. Diese Synergie ist aus sportlicher und aus kultureller Sicht zweifelsohne sinnvoll. Eine echte WIN-WIN Situation für beide Seiten.
Lesen Sie hier in der Rubrik "Exchange" die Berichte von ehemaligen Importspielern der Grizzlies, welche einige Monate in der Schweiz verbrachten.
In the national league A in Swiss american football, it is usual that a player from abroad is signed in order to enforce the team. Thereby the Bern Grizzlies allow a young athlete to execute his passion further on and to enter the Swiss culture. This synergy is highly desirable from a sporting and cultural perspective.
Read now the reports from former importplayers at the Bern Grizzlies who enjoyed this unique priviledge.
Henry Glackin – OL 2013
My time spent with the Bern grizzlies is one I will cherish for all my life. I have played on several teams and this is one the best I have been on. Everyone on the team had accepted and made me feel like one of the players right away. The players on the team were so knowledgeable about the game of football and were so eager to learn. When you are around the team in any setting you can tell how much they care for one another, for me that is what I look for in a good team. From the times spent after practice just hanging around, to the time spent at big bens after the games were memories I’ll never forget. Outside of football I got to spend a lot of time wondering the city of Bern and seeing all of its beauty. When the players were not busy with work or school they took time to show Devon and I the city. The players would take us to their homes for dinner or to their parent’s home for a nice home cooked meal. If you have the opportunity to play for the Grizzlies I would say do it!!! It was a great honor and privilege to have played for the Grizzlies.
Devon Langhorst – DL 2013
When I tell people that I play football in Europe, typically their response is something along the lines of "football? You mean soccer, right?" After clarifying and walking them through the process of how I came about being a professional American football player in Europe, they're often intrigued, just as I was when I first found out about the opportunity.
Playing football in Europe has been somewhat of a dream experience for me. Growing up in Ohio I had never really had the opportunity to travel my own country much, let alone the world. After college, I has hoping to get some interest from the NFL, but was told by most scouts that I was too small to make it in the league. I thought my playing days were over, and I reluctantly began to search for jobs. My path changed when I had a discussion with a former college teammate of mine, Steve Valentino, who had just signed to play with the Calanda Broncos for the 2012 season. He explained the process of getting in contact with teams in Europe, and I began my search. After playing one season in Italy, where I had an amazing experience with great teammates, I signed with the Bern Grizzlies for the 2013 season.
I have nothing but great things to say about the Grizzlies organization, my teammates, and the people of Bern. From day one I was brought in and treated like family by everyone on the team, but especially the four Grizzly teammates that I shared an apartment with. Those guys made my trip very special. They showed me various parts of the country, took me to their homes to meet their families, went rafting on the Aare, introduced me to the traditional Swiss foods, tested the local beer and showed me the best nightlife spots in the city. By the end of my trip, Bern truly felt like home to me. I was fortunate enough to have both family and friends come to visit while I spent my time in Bern, and they were awestruck with natural beauty of Bern and Switzerland as a whole.
Coming to Switzerland, I was unsure of what level the football would be. I was pleasantly surprised by the overall skill level of the guys on the team when I arrived, with most guys being solid football players, and a few being excellent. The sport of American football seems to be growing in Switzerland, and the guys on the team are working hard to promote the organization. Football is something that has taught me toughness, hard work, resiliency, and teamwork. I think it's a solid addition to any community and a nice outlet to help young men learn these lessons.
Moving forward, I urge more of the residents of Bern to come experience a game. Come grab a beer, sit back, relax, and enjoy the action on the field. Football is a complicated game (I consider it to be like playing chess with giant men) but once the basics are understood, I don't believe there's a more exciting sport to watch in the world!