Griffins add prototypical and powerful left-side prospect, 6-foot-7 Team BC product Laszlo

Daylan Laszlo led Team BC to a 16U bronze medal at the Canada Cup last summer.
Daylan Laszlo led Team BC to a 16U bronze medal at the Canada Cup last summer.

Jefferson Hagen
MacEwan Athletics

EDMONTON – After watching the 16U Canada Cup last summer, Griffins men's volleyball head coach Brad Poplawski was immediately intrigued by a powerful outside hitter on Team BC.

That started the process of recruiting Daylan Laszlo, who will join the Griffins in 2024-25, Poplawski announced Thursday.

"Daylan was their go-to guy," said the coach, who was a mentor coach for the Team Alberta squad that lost to B.C. in the bronze medal game. "I remember seeing this big 6-6 kid with a good arm, moved really well, hit hard, pipe, spin serve. Obviously, I learned about him."

He learned something new recently, too. Laszlo is still growing.

"On our recruiting call, he said, 'hey coach, I'm listed at 6-6, but they measured me at the showcase and I'm 6-7 now.' "

That's certainly an intriguing development for a prospect that has even more growing to do as he jumps to the Canada West ranks, but the potential is huge for what he will become.

"When you look at left side build and size, he's a prototypical (prospect) of what you're looking for in a left side – 6-7, good jump, good arm; he really checks all the boxes," said Poplawski. "I talked to his club coach, and he was very bullish on him – 'hey, you've got a good one there.' 

"Like a lot of young guys coming in, he needs a little bit of refinement and to get stronger. With a year of training, he could be really good."

During his 16U club season, he was named provincial MVP after leading the Junior Cascades to a second-place finish. His club also tied for fifth at nationals.

He is currently captain of the Junior Cascades' 17U squad and his high school team G.W. Graham.

"He's very mature, too," said Poplawski. "A lot of times with a 17-year-old, the first conversation can be tough, but we had like an hour-long conversation where he was asking good questions. He was very mature. 

"It just shows the guys who are excited about being here, want to be here, are excited about this process. I think that's been our recruiting strategy – guys who are moving from somewhere to be here. They're really passionate about wanting to be a Griffin, wanting to play in our program."

Poplawski is excited to watch Laszlo play at a tournament in Calgary this weekend. 

"I think he could have a really special five-year career," he said. "Not to put too much pressure on these guys; we have older guys in the program who he can learn from and develop and get with Mel (Lowe), our strength coach. But when you look at his frame, physicality and potential, it's a big pickup. 

"He's a really big piece for us moving forward and I just can't wait to work with him."