Friday, November 7, 2014
This and That
The weekly collection of thoughts running through my muddled mind in no particular order
--It didn't dawn on me until the official word came down that I would be doing the play-by-play of the Regina Rams-Calgary Dinos playoff football game on Saturday afternoon from McMahon that I've made my last trip to Mosaic Stadium for a game this year. I won't be at the Riders game because I'll be on my way back from what hopefully is a Rams win. The bad news----one less visit to the old girl. The good news----no trips up the ramps until next year. I think I speak for a lot of people who sit in the 200's asking why wasn't an easier way created to get up to that level and under no circumstances should we have anything like that in the new stadium.
--Darian or no Darian, I think the Riders beat the Eskimos and end up finishing 3rd in the West. While I would love to see the team upset Edmonton in the West semi-final and will be cheering the green and white on, realistically I think the dream of repeating dies in the Alberta capital leaving us all to wonder what might have been had number 4 not gotten injured. I will still say this team would have gone to and won the Grey Cup again. Call me crazy, tell me to take off my green-tinged glasses, but that's the way I feel.
--The Canadian Taxpayers Federation says government employees, and a lot of them, phoned in sick after the Riders beat Ottawa on a Sunday at Mosaic---that was the last Riders win I believe. The story goes on to say many government employees phoned in "sick" on the day of the Grey Cup parade and the day of the CFL expansion draft. Why on the day of the draft? Really? What I find surprising is that government employees didn't phone in sick the day after the Grey Cup win. What better excuse would one have than that! Like no one has ever claimed to be "sick" so they could attend or watch some other event. I think that happens just about every week does it not?
--Some interesting numbers have come out regarding the CFL vs NFL battle in Canada. The NFL is getting better numbers on CTV than the CFL on TSN. If I am the CFL, I would be very concerned about this and its something the league will need to look into when hiring a replacement for Marc Cohon, Say what you will about the NFL, but their marketing machine is just too strong for the CFL. The CFL can't compete even in its own backyard. This league needs to take a serious look at not playing Sundays after Labour Day with the exception of playoffs and the Grey Cup and they have to find a way at getting the younger demographic involved in some manner, With 9 teams, the fantasy experience is not the same as you have far less of a talent base to choose from, but something needs to be done to bring in the younger viewer who loves the NFL.
--As I watch Rams quarterbacks Cayman Shutter and Noah Picton hurl the football around with the greatest of ease racking up 400 yard games, I can only sit back and wonder why CFL teams won't develop quarterbacks. Tell me Rider fans, would a CIS quarterback have done a better job than Tino Sunseri and Seth Doege this year? This is something else that needs to change and change in a big hurry. Picton and Shutter aren't the only good CIS quarterbacks out there both currently and in the past who have deserved a shot. Perhaps by the time Picton becomes draft eligible, there will be a shot for him.
--Is there anyone giving the Rams a chance against Calgary this weekend. The Dinos should win the game and win it going away, but this Regina team has shown they can play with the big boys this season and while a 59-7 loss in Calgary earlier this year won't help, the Dinos didn't see Regina when they had a run game in Atlee Simon, I wouldn't bet the farm on the Rams, but I wouldn't write them off. Upsets and many of them have happened in the Canada West semi-finals over the years and this could be another one of those years. We'll find out. I'm excited to have the call alongside Marco Ricci on sportscage.ca starting at 4 Saturday afternoon. It would be great to have the game on CKRM, but at least there is an alternative now which wasn't the case a few short years ago.
--NFL teams still hand out programs before games. They are just little informative 20-30 page booklets that sell for 2 bucks. CFL teams should once again adopt this. Give fans a little something for entering the stadium. Yes, some won't buy and yes, some will leave them at the park, but if you only make one or two games a year its a keepsake. I know whenever I go to a pro sporting event, the one thing I want is a program. If the CFL doesn't want to do it, the Riders should.
--Week 10 NFL Lock Of The Week ---Packers over Bears
Week 10 NFL Upset Of The Week ---Jaguars over Cowboys
--Did some schools really tell kids they couldn't wear Hallowe'en costumes to school this year because it is no longer considered politically correct? Its like the Christmas concert of old which now is referred to as the "winter concert". CMON!!!! We managed to get through this 20-25 years ago and beyond can we not do it now. This politically correct nonsense has gone way over the top.....wayyyyyyyyyy over!
--Its been noted TSN's morning loop now features the dynamic duo of Kate Beirness and Natasha Staniszewski. TSN is a male dominated channel and what better move for them to make than allowing people to watch Sportsnet's NHL coverage and then come back and have two talented and very easy to look at women come back and give you the highlights. They do some dumb things at TSN, but this isn't one of them.
--There is talk the NHL is close to allowing ads on their jerseys. If this starts in the NHL, it will carry over to other leagues and NHL unis will look some kinda ugly. I can only hope this doesn't happen, but I think it will.
--If those who vote for the various CFL awards look at things in a rational manner, there is no reason why Ricky Foley shouldn't be named the league's top Canadian. His only competition is Jon Cornish and the Calgary running back only played half a season. It was a solid half season and then some, but Cornish isn't the league's best Canuck for a second straight season. Its Foley!
--Congrats to TSN's Chris Cuthbert. Chris was named to the media wing of the Canadian Football Hall of Fame this week. Its no secret I'm a big fan of Chris' so I am in favour of that induction. Its now time to add his name to the media wing of the Hockey Hall of Fame, but I suspect he needs to hang up the microphone before that honor can be considered.