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Apr. 15—Note: The Valley to Summit series is a daily roundup of items from the Missouri Valley Football Conference and the Summit League as it relates to UND sports.

Former UND linebacker Tyron Vrede’s long, interesting path in football could reach new heights Thursday afternoon.

The Canadian Football League will hold its Global Draft on Thursday, beginning at noon. A popular CFL web site, 3 Down Nation, says Vrede is the second-best available linebacker in the draft.

The site says Les Maruo of Japan, a former starting linebacker at Texas-San Antonio, is the No. 1 available linebacker.

“When it comes to build and athleticism, it’s hard to separate Vrede and Maruo,” JC Abbott wrote for 3 Down Nation. “The Dutchman played less in college, but his day one value on the teams is equally sky high and you can’t go wrong with either player.”

The Global Draft is the first year for this setup, after the league previously held separate drafts for European players and Mexican players. The 2020 Global Draft was canceled after the cancellation of the 2020 CFL season.

For the 2021 CFL season, teams are required to keep two global players on the active roster and up to three on the practice roster.

A native of the Netherlands, Vrede spent two years working at the Amsterdam airport in order to pay his way to junior college football in the United States. At UND, Vrede was known as a hard-hitting inside linebacker and a great teammate.

As a junior in 2018, Vrede saw action in 11 games for UND. He had 15 solo stops and 23 total tackles. He was fifth on the team with 6.0 tackles for loss.

In 2019, Vrede played in 12 games and made 33 tackles with 4.0 for loss and 1.5 sacks.

Iowa’s Grant inks NLI

Reid Grant, a point guard prospect from Johnston, Iowa, committed to UND men’s basketball last fall, but he finally put pen to paper on his letter of intent on Wednesday, which was the first day of an NCAA basketball signing period.

Grant’s signing meant it was the first opportunity for UND coach Paul Sather to comment on his recruit.

“Reid’s a winner, on and off the court,” said UND coach Paul Sather. “His feel for the game and ability to make everyone around him better is unmatched. He’s a highly-competitive guard that led his team to the state championship game in the largest class in Iowa. Reid comes from a great high school program and we’re excited about the impact he will have in our program.”

Grant helped his team advance to the Iowa AAAA title game in his final season. Grant averaged 12.5 points per game to rank third on the team while pacing the Dragons in assists with four per contest. He also connected on over 47 percent of his attempts from distance and pulled down around three rebounds per game.

Following his senior season, Grant was selected to Iowa Print Writer’s Association Class 4A All-State Third Team as well as earning first team all-conference honors and was selected to the IBCA All-Star Game. He finished his career with over 600 points, 250 rebounds and 230 assists to be named a finalist for McDonald’s All-American status.

Maurice on the move

Former UND running backs coach and current Eastern Washington assistant Kevin Maurice, who helped mentor standout backs John Santiago and Brady Oliveira while in Grand Forks, said his goodbyes on Twitter on Wednesday to his Eastern Washington football players and coaches.

Maurice was in Cheney for the past four seasons. He spent three years in Grand Forks.

Maurice came to UND with a reference from former UND star defensive player and coach Tim Tibesar, as the two worked together at Purdue.

Maurice didn’t specify in his tweet where he was headed, but Ryan Collingwood of the Spokesman-Review reported on Twitter that it was an FBS destination that would be announced in the morning.

The Maurice move might be interesting timing for UND, too, as some FCS playoff bracket projections have Eastern Washington playing UND in the first round.