Courtesy Ian Busby/Calgary Sun
Maybe the Calgary Stampeders should be thanking Saskatchewan Roughriders head coach Corey Chamblin.
Instead of any lingering talk about how Stamps players were involved in an altercation Sunday after a concert, the focus is now squarely on the football field. Correct that … the focus is all on Jon Cornish.
By putting down a guarantee that Cornish wouldn’t rush for 100 yards on Sunday in Regina or someone’s going to get cut, Chamblin has put the onus on his defence against the Stampeders running back.
A month ago, the Stamps went into Mosaic Stadium and Cornish rushed for 159 yards as the Stamps controlled the ball and the clock in a 17-10 win during a windy day.
Stamps head coach John Hufnagel didn’t sound too happy when asked if he would work hard at getting Cornish over 100.
“We’re trying hard to go out and win a football game,” Hufnagel said. “I don’t care if Jon Cornish gets one yard and we win. That’s the only thing on our minds.”
So what if they stack the box against you?
“If you watched our last game there, because it was such windy conditions, the only way they could put more people in the box is if they used their fans,” Hufnagel said.
Oh baby, it’s on.
Cornish was a little surprised there was so much focus on him after Thursday’s practice, calling the idea ‘novel.’
“When the coach says something like that, it’s rather unprecedented,” Cornish said. “As a player, you have to respond as you would to anybody talking, with play on the field. I would be happy with five yards if we get the win. In the face of a challenge, all great athletes rise to the occasion.”
The Stamps won’t have to make any roster moves due to the altercation on Sunday. Defensive back Tad Kornegay recovered to participate in practice on Thursday, and he declared himself ready to play on the weekend.
The Stamps should also have Kenny Pettway back in action after a week off. Slotback Nik Lewis didn’t do a whole lot in practice on Thursday, but Hufnagel said it was to get more work for receiver Anthony Parker, who will be the main backup in the slot.
Other than Pettway returning and receiver Romby Bryant coming back after one week off due to a leg injury, there might not be any other roster moves for the Stamps heading into Regina.