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  #741  
Old Posted Sep 13, 2017, 9:58 PM
Steveston Steveston is offline
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Originally Posted by khabibulin View Post
I hope that does not mean pushing the Grey Cup to December! My preference would be to start one week earlier, or drop one pre-season game. There may be considerations from the current CBA however.

I can't imagine coaching staffs being able to conduct proper player evaluation with only one pre-season game. It's tough enough, I imagine, with the current two (compared to the other ridiculous extreme of FOUR in the NFL).
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  #742  
Old Posted Sep 14, 2017, 1:31 AM
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I actually wish the CFL season would start later as attendance and ratings is always weaker in the summer months than in the fall which is true football season anyways.
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  #743  
Old Posted Sep 14, 2017, 2:28 PM
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In Canada, summer football makes sense if you actually want to see a game live. I don't want to be going to games in December and January. It is way too cold here. Also, the market is different in Canada with the main competitor being the NHL. This is different from the USA.
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  #744  
Old Posted Sep 14, 2017, 2:30 PM
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I can't imagine that the CFL would want to push the season into December... if anything, I expect it to start a bit sooner. Which is fine with me, I love summer games.
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  #745  
Old Posted Sep 14, 2017, 2:42 PM
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Didn't we have Grey Cups played in December back in the old days sometimes?
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  #746  
Old Posted Sep 14, 2017, 2:44 PM
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Originally Posted by Acajack View Post
Didn't we have Grey Cups played in December back in the old days sometimes?
Perhaps, a long time ago there were a few games one week later, but I also think there was at least one game a week earlier.
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  #747  
Old Posted Sep 14, 2017, 5:58 PM
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Didn't we have Grey Cups played in December back in the old days sometimes?
Last December date for a Grey Cup was in 1972. It was on December 3. Lots of December dates in the 1930's though.
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  #748  
Old Posted Sep 14, 2017, 10:08 PM
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The season will start a week earlier. The Grey Cup will remain in the same date
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  #749  
Old Posted Sep 16, 2017, 6:42 PM
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I wish they would move the whole season up a month so the Grey Cup is played at the end of October. And play it and the other playoff games on Saturday.
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  #750  
Old Posted Sep 16, 2017, 6:58 PM
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Originally Posted by Steveston View Post
I can't imagine coaching staffs being able to conduct proper player evaluation with only one pre-season game. It's tough enough, I imagine, with the current two (compared to the other ridiculous extreme of FOUR in the NFL).
They should go to 3 pre-season games and 16 regular season games. They only switched from 4+16 to 2+18 in the 1980s in an attempt to boost gate revenues.

Teams don't seem adequately prepared for the season openers after just 2 pre-season games, particularly in the CFL where many training camp players are such unknown quantities.
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  #751  
Old Posted Sep 16, 2017, 9:08 PM
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O’Leary: Bridge trying to open doors for upstart Canadian QBs
Chris O'Leary Senior Writer tsn.ca September 16, 2017

In real time, Brandon Bridge was on a path that hundreds, maybe thousands of quarterbacks before him have been on in the CFL.

The 25-year-old backup got the official news on Friday morning that he’d be getting his first start with the Saskatchewan Roughriders, after Kevin Glenn told coach Chris Jones that his hand didn’t feel right yet and that he couldn’t be effective.

His numbers: 21-31 passing for 231 yards and three touchdowns were largely amassed in the first half, where he led his team to an impressive 20-10 lead. His vision stayed the same all night. He wanted to duplicate the good, eliminate the bad and minimize his mistakes.

In the end, on the right side of a 27-19 win over the Hamilton Tiger-Cats, he’d done that, even if the offence dried up and the Tiger-Cats delivered a good scare, getting to the Riders’ one-yard line with five seconds to play.

Standing at his locker stall after the game, the majority of his gear still on, he sounded like many victorious quarterbacks in this league before him.

“The ending is not what we liked, but we definitely liked the outcome,” he said. “I think we were up by 17 at one time and we made it harder on ourselves. It’s on me. We have to learn how to finish and I’ve got to learn how to play down the stretch and keep it at a high level, even when the game is tight or not.”

While Bridge went to work on the field, getting just his second-ever career start in this league, the subplot unfolded around him online and in the homes of viewers across the country. Bridge, a Mississauga native and one of just two Canadian QBs currently in the league, was making history.

Bridge became the first Canadian to start and win a game since Greg Vavra led the Calgary Stampeders to a win over the Toronto Argonauts on Oct. 14, 1985. His three TD passes in a single game were the first since Vavra accomplished that feat in 1984.

While hundreds or thousands of quarterbacks have played through Bridge’s scenario as a backup trying to show they belong, very few have done it with the ghosts of Canadian players at that position behind them. The less-than-pleasing second half and the tightness of the Riders’ win — they’re now 6-5 and in fourth place in the CFL’s West Division — hung over the locker room after the game, but Bridge’s accomplishment registered with him.

“It feels pretty good. It’s been such a long time,” he said. “I’m trying to open up doors for the younger generation that is a Canadian and actually wants to play quarterback. I’m just trying to open up that door. I’m trying to lay that first stone so it’s an easier path for them.”

“I thought he played decent in the first half. I didn’t think anybody played good in the second half,” Jones said of Bridge.

“Offensively we’ve got to do a better job. We’ve got to coach them better to know the situations and to stay on the field offensively. We had a two-score lead and (we need to) keep it that way.”

Bridge looked young on the field at times on Friday. He missed a few throws and fumbled the ball away when he was sacked by Simoni Lawrence late in the first quarter. But he began to find a groove in the second quarter. He threaded the ball to Rob Bagg into tight coverage for an 18-yard gain; he found Caleb Holley for an 11-yard gain and then hit Bakari Grant for 27-yards. A Hamilton penalty got Bridge to the nine-yard line and he found Canadian receiver Devon Bailey for his first touchdown of the night.

“That’s what Brandon does,” Bagg said “He’s got a very strong arm, he’s smart and he can put it in very small windows.”

The same way he threw himself into Winnipeg fans in the Bombers’ end zone after rushing for a TD last week, Bridge toyed with the Ticats fans after the score, mimicking Johnny Manziel’s money gesture at the crowd.

“It was planned with the group of receivers,” Bridge said.

“We always plan our celebrations through the week and what we want to do. We have a great group of guys so yeah, I actually know Johnny. I went to Manning camp with him two years in a row. He’s a good guy.”

Ravaged by injuries as the game wore on — Jones figured there were nine players injured on the night — the Riders struggled to get points in the second half and had to lean on a depleted defence for the win.

“You ever hear of nine people getting hurt?” Jones asked, in disbelief.

“There was nine, 10 guys injured that didn’t go back on the field and there were probably another six or seven that got pretty nicked up and continued to play on one leg,” Bagg said. “(Brendan) Labatte, that man led by example. He gave us everything he possibly had and I love playing with guys like that.”

Jones spread the blame for the offensive shortcomings, but Bridge put it on himself.

“I’m going to take full responsibility for that. The quarterback position, everything is on you,” he said. “There were a couple of plays that were there and I just didn’t take it, probably didn’t trust it. It’s definitely on me. I’ve got to get better.”

A free-agent at the end of this season, the game was a decent resume clipping for Bridge. For those watching in the stands and at home with a vested interest in seeing a Canadian finally become a full-time starting quarterback, it was something different. It was a glimmer of hope.
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  #752  
Old Posted Sep 17, 2017, 4:12 AM
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Originally Posted by craner View Post
I wish they would move the whole season up a month so the Grey Cup is played at the end of October. And play it and the other playoff games on Saturday.
They tried playoff games on Saturdays years ago... It was a massive failure and they moved back to Sunday.

Moving up the season too far also created issues with the drafts (both NFL and CFL) in terms of university/college players... It could be done, but might actually have more negatives than positives.

Also, the summer months are usually the weaker ones both in terms of attendance and tv viewership, so pulling an autumn game and putting it earlier in the year, might actually pull down the averages. You also would overlap with the NHL season more.
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  #753  
Old Posted Sep 17, 2017, 5:43 AM
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  #754  
Old Posted Sep 17, 2017, 6:45 AM
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  #755  
Old Posted Sep 17, 2017, 7:41 PM
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Originally Posted by craner View Post
I wish they would move the whole season up a month so the Grey Cup is played at the end of October. And play it and the other playoff games on Saturday.
They tried that a few years ago (playing playoff games on Saturday) and it was a disaster.
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  #756  
Old Posted Sep 18, 2017, 12:45 PM
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HOF Profile: Mike O’Shea is the ‘ultimate teammate’
Chris O'Leary Senior Writer cfl.ca September 16 2017

It starts with one tell-all picture.



Mike O’Shea, the head coach of the Winnipeg Blue Bombers, is walking down a corridor at Tim Horton’s Field in Hamilton. Four, maybe five very full-looking duffel bags are draped over his shoulders, the team’s trademark W stamped on each one.

This is a couple of hours removed from a convincing 39-12 win over the Tiger-Cats, when team-wide post-game exhaustion is at its peak. But the Bombers had a building to vacate, a flight to catch and another week of football ahead of them to prepare for. That and O’Shea is the type of person that couldn’t walk past his equipment staff hurriedly packing up shop and not stop to lend a hand.

O’Shea will be back in Hamilton a month later to head into the Canadian Football Hall of Fame. It’s the reward for a 16-year career in the CFL that saw him win three Grey Cups, an Outstanding Canadian Player award (1999) and finish second all-time in tackles. The North Bay, Ont. native was the first Canadian in CFL history to crack the 1,000-tackle mark.

That hastily taken picture of the head coach showing he’s not above any job when it comes to his team is indicative of an attitude that was ingrained in him and shared through his playing career.

Mike Morreale, O’Shea’s teammate in Toronto (1996, 2002, 2003) and Hamilton (2000) saw the picture in the days after that game. Over those four years, O’Shea has mental images to match the digital one.

“I’ve seen that countless times,” he said. “That was O’Sh. When he was a player, as a coach, as a friend…we traveled the world together. I’d like to consider him one of my closest friends and I’m overly thrilled that he’s being inducted. It’s not shocking in the least that he’d be up there so quickly.”

If you read enough about him, you find out quickly that O’Shea doesn’t like to talk about himself any more than absolutely necessary. He declined an interview request for this story, opting instead to focus on his team and their season. What does come up about O’Shea though, over and over again, are two words: ultimate teammate.

“I think if they were going to build a mould of the ultimate teammate it would be Mike O’Shea. There’s just no other way to put it,” Morreale said.

“When you look at what you consider an ultimate teammate, you have to have a guy that you like and that you respect and is respected and is a me-last guy and a team-first guy.

“He had all those attributes in spades. You combine the fact that he was brilliant when it came to understanding the game and wanting to learn the game. He led by example. The guy was still playing special teams up until the end of his career and starting at middle linebacker. He played through pain, played through injuries, arguably the toughest guy that I’ve ever played with and played against.

“You don’t find a better all-around teammate and he happened to be an excellent football player. That didn’t come by chance. That came because he worked his butt off to get there.”

O’Shea didn’t start to play football until he was in the ninth grade. He didn’t take on a significant role with the Widdifield High School Wildcats until he was in the 11th grade. As a defensive lineman and linebacker — and thanks to a solid six-inch growth spurt — O’Shea found his place on the field and his career began to take off.

He eventually chose to sign with the University of Guelph Gryphons, became an All-Canadian and the Ontario University Athletic Association defensive player of the year in 1992. He went fourth overall to the Edmonton Eskimos in the 1993 CFL Canadian Draft.

As the all-star selections, the awards and Grey Cup wins piled up, O’Shea built his reputation across the league.

“I’ll tell you what, I’ve never seen a more complete athlete in his preparation, his skillset, his intensity for the game,” Chad Folk, O’Shea’s Argonauts teammate told Bluebombers.com.

“I’ve never had a better teammate as it fits my definition of a teammate. It was his selflessness, his taking hours upon hours to sit down with guys to teach them on film.”

Speaking with Bluebombers.com in March after his pending induction to the Hall of Fame was announced, O’Shea looked back on his career and saw those around him.

“The best thing is watching a buddy drink out of the cup,” O’Shea said. “All the guys… Chad Folk, Jude St. John, (Paul) Masotti, Mike Morreale… I can think of hundreds of guys.”

“He loves the CFL. He loves it. This is his passion,” Morreale said. “He has a lot of respect for it and that to me comes through with everything he does.

“He is the toughest guy on and off the field. He’s got your back 100 per cent and he’ll take whatever heat you can throw at him and he’ll shelter other guys from it too, because that’s the way he was brought up and he does it with a lot of grace.”

As a player and a coach, O’Shea’s selflessness could be second-to-none. While that differs from many other players, his desire to win — both in the past and in the present, where the Bombers are chasing their first Grey Cup since 1990 — is in sync with many of the game’s greatest competitors. He’s just always viewed the accomplishment as a team feat, rather than a singular one.

“To me, having my name on that trophy, that’s way more important than any ring,” he told Bluebombers.com. “It’s such an important part of Canada’s history. It’s beautiful.”
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  #757  
Old Posted Yesterday, 6:39 PM
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I don't think this has been brought up, but does anybody know where Chris Schultz is?
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  #758  
Old Posted Today, 3:01 AM
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This is not the actual Redblacks team tonight.
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  #759  
Old Posted Today, 4:18 AM
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Brutal crowd in Vancouver tonight.
So disappointing to see. I just don't understand it.
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  #760  
Old Posted Today, 4:33 AM
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Brutal crowd in Vancouver tonight.
So disappointing to see. I just don't understand it.
I cannot overemphasize how little the Lions exist in the average sport's fans mindset here. Finding someone else who watches the CFL is an exciting and novel experience.
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