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2014 CFL Season

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#1 GA Russell

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Posted 26 November 2007 - 05:14 PM

The day after the Grey Cup is the first day of the "fiscal" year vis a vis the salary cap.

So today, the Lions cut Dave Dickenson. That doesn't mean that they don't expect him to re-sign with them, but it will be at a lower salary. As I recall, he made $400k this year. So the Lions won't pay top dollar anymore for a guy likely to be injured.

http://slam.canoe.ca...4234041-cp.html

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Edited by GA Russell, 02 June 2014 - 03:46 PM.


#2 GA Russell

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Posted 26 November 2007 - 11:00 PM

Ricky Ray is entering his option year. He expects to sign a two-year extension in December.
http://www.canada.co...a...k=88085&p=1

*****

The Stampeders are expected to name John Hufnagel as their new head coach very soon. Such announcements are prohibited until after the Grey Cup game.
http://www.canada.co...a...221&k=40751

*****

Unnamed sources say that the Bombers' Brendon Taman is the Ticats' pick for new GM if he wants the job.
http://www.canada.co...a...be1&k=63747

edit for typo

Edited by GA Russell, 26 November 2007 - 11:01 PM.


#3 GA Russell

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Posted 27 November 2007 - 05:25 PM

Jim Popp is out as the Als' head coach, but he will remain as the GM and personnel chief. IMO, this is as it should be.
http://www.globespor...tsFootball/home

#4 GA Russell

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Posted 27 November 2007 - 09:27 PM

One Marc Bellemare is running for mayor of Quebec City on a platform of getting a CFL expansion team for the city!
http://www.tsn.ca/cf...223688&hubname=

#5 GA Russell

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Posted 29 November 2007 - 05:16 PM

The Bombers have denied the Ticats permission to speak with Brendan Taman.
http://www.tsn.ca/cf...834&hubname=cfl

#6 GA Russell

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Posted 29 November 2007 - 10:30 PM

Bobby Simpson has died. I have read many times about The Sleeper Play.
http://www.canada.co...a...13d9c04&p=1

#7 GA Russell

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Posted 08 December 2007 - 03:24 AM

I've been in Chicago on a business trip the past week, and I was away from a computer. A lot happened that I will get to soon, but I want to make a point of mentioning that Jake Gaudaur passed away. I first met him in 1978. We met and spoke on the phone a number of times, and my dealings with him were a highlight of my life. So in memoriam, I would like to post Dan Ralph's entire obituary:

Former CFL commissioner dies
Gaudaur served from '68 to '84
By Dan Ralph, THE CANADIAN PRESS



Jake Gaudaur.

Pete Martin will forever remember Jake Gaudaur's tenure as CFL commissioner.

Gaudaur, who served as CFL commissioner from 1968 until 1984, died Tuesday in a Burlington, Ont., nursing home of prostate cancer. He was 87.

Martin was a linebacker with the Toronto Argonauts in the late 1960s when he received a letter personally signed by Gaudaur after being ejected from a game with the Ottawa Rough Riders.

"It was a polite letter from Jake informing me that I was being fined $75," Martin recollected Tuesday. "I still have it and smile when I read it because I didn't feel very good about what I had done.

"But I've always thought Jake was a very, very classy man. He was always very friendly and he always remembered who you were. He was an incredible commissioner who really helped make the CFL what it is today."

Gaudaur was born Oct. 5, 1920 in Orillia, Ont. His father, Jacob, was a professional rowing champion and while Jake Gaudaur did follow in his father's footsteps initially, he also played hockey and lacrosse before blazing his own trail in Canadian pro football.

"He was a very humble and modest man so he never spoke of his accomplishments," Diane Gaudaur said of her father. "I went through his scrapbooks a few weeks ago and I was quite stunned by all of his involvements.

"He was an accomplished athlete. But I don't think he was as great an athlete as he was an administrator because he commanded so much respect from people. It was hard to be rude to my father because he was such a gentle giant. He was certainly proud of his involvement with the CFL at all levels, even back to the early days."

Gaudaur played for the Hamilton Tigers (1940-1941, 1948-1949), Toronto Argonauts (1941), Toronto RCAF Hurricanes (1942), Toronto Indians (of the Ontario Rugby Football Union, 1945-'46), Montreal Alouettes (1947), Hamilton Tiger-Cats (1950-1951, 1953). He won Grey Cups as a player with the Hurricanes as well as his final season with the Ticats in '53.

He served as a director with the Ticats in '52 and was the club's president and general manager from 1954 to '67. During that time, Hamilton captured nine East Division titles and four Grey Cup crowns but Gaudaur never wanted to bring attention to that success, even in retirement.

Diane Gaudaur remembers a comment her father made to her after she bought him a marker for his walker.

"All I could find was a Curious George or a Tiger-Cat so I settled on Curious George," she said. "He said, 'I'm glad you didn't get the Tiger-Cat because it would look like I was drawing attention to myself.'

"That is my father."

Gaudaur, who served as a pilot in the Second World War, was named the CFL's fifth commissioner in 1968. During his term, Gaudaur was instrumental in keeping the league a Canadian entity and resisted American influence by ensuring it maintained its Canadian rules and regulations. He also took an active role in the boardroom, heading up the Player Pension Plan Advisory Board, the Management Council as well as the Rules Committee.

He was also a determined negotiator, a quality that put the CFL on a more solid financial footing thanks to the radio and television deals he brokered. It allowed the league to compete with the NFL for players such as Joe Theismann, who spurned the Miami Dolphins to sign with Toronto in the 1970s.

"The passing of Jake Gaudaur has left the CFL family with a heavy heart today," CFL commissioner Mark Cohon said in a statement. "Jake's leadership and dedication to the CFL throughout his career were a great service to our League and to the sport of Canadian football.

"While we mourn his passing, we also celebrate his life, his community leadership and all of his wonderful accomplishments. Our thoughts and prayers are with the entire Gaudaur family and all of Jake's friends and fans across the country."

Some of Diane Gaudaur's fondest recent memories of her father was his interaction with Bella, her four-year-old golden lab.

"It's my dog but he took it over," she said with a chuckle. "Every night we would go into his room and she'd jump on his bed and they would have a little fight.

"They would go through the motions, they'd both growl. It was quite wonderful.

"He loved this dog. This dog just kept him going. Every time she walked into his room, he'd give her heck like, "What are you doing here, madame?" He was very playful with her."

Gaudaur was inducted into both the Toronto Argonauts and Canadian Football Hall of Fame in 1984 and was made an officer of the Order of Canada in 1985. Gaudaur is also a member of Canada's Sports Hall of Fame.

Gaudaur is survived by his wife, Isabel, three daughters and seven grandchildren.

Visitation will be held Friday at Smith Funeral Homes in Burlington from 3-5 p.m. ET and 7-9 p.m. A private family service will be held Saturday.

Edited by GA Russell, 08 December 2007 - 03:25 AM.


#8 GA Russell

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Posted 25 December 2007 - 06:33 PM

Merry Christmas everyone!

As I mentioned, agreat deal happened the week of Dec. 2 when I was in Chicago. Let's get caught up.

The Ticats hired Bob O'Billovich as their new GM.
http://www.globespor...tsFootball/home

Pinball Clemons stepped away from his coaching job, and was named the new CEO of the Argos.
http://tsn.ca/cfl/ne...=224338

John Hufnagel was named the new head coach of the Stampeders.
http://www.canada.co...df-969815747985

Marcel Desjardins, fresh from being punted as the Ticats' GM, has landed on his feet as the Asst. GM of the Alouettes.
http://www.cfl.ca/in...&...y&nid=22170

Rich Stubler was named the new head coach of the Argos.
http://www.thestar.c.../article/283397

The Alouettes hired former NFL asst. coach Marc Trestman as their new head coach. I believe that this is a big mistake. The guy has no Canadian rules football experience. The last coach to jump from the NFL to the CFL and do well was Marv Levy in 1974.
http://www.canada.co...a...228&k=23692

The Eskimos signed Ricky Ray to a four-year contract, and named Rick Worman their new offensive coordinator.
http://www.tsn.ca/cf...521&hubname=cfl

The Ticats decided not to fire head coach Charlie Taaffe.
http://www.thespec.c.../article/295727

#9 GA Russell

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Posted 27 December 2007 - 07:48 PM

CKNW in Vancouver is reporting...

Dave Ritchie will retire. He has been the Lions' defensive coordinator since he lost his last job as head coach three years ago. Last year he was hoping to land another head coaching job like in Saskatchewan. My guess is that he was not interviewed this year for the three job openings, so at his age he has decided to retire. But that's just a guess on my part.

Roy Shivers will replace Bob O'Billovich as the Lions' player personnel director. I met Shivers when he had that job around 1990, back when Joe Galat was with the Lions, I guess as their GM. They don't get much more outspoken than Shivers, as the fans of Saskatchewan can tell you!

After one year at Edmonton where he was the fall guy for the Eskimos' last place finish, Jacques Chapdelaine will return to the Lions as their offensive coordinator.

http://slam.canoe.ca...736385-sun.html

#10 GA Russell

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Posted 16 January 2008 - 12:05 AM

The league has increased the salary cap $150,000. to $4.2 million.
http://slam.canoe.ca...4774690-cp.html

The Bombers' Kyries Hebert has jumped to the Cincinnati Bengals.

The Ticats have named former Stamps defensive co-ordinator Denny Creehan as their new defensive co-ordinator.
http://www.thespec.c.../article/305759

*****

I received for Christmas a book called The Canadian Football League - The Phoenix of Professional Sports Leagues by Steve O'Brien. I learned a great deal about the financial difficulties of the league in the mid-90s and the US expansion of that same period. I recommend it.

*****

I also received for Christmas a book about the American Football League called Going Long by Jeff Miller. I was an AFL fan when I was a boy, and I recommend it if any of you are old enough to remember that league.

It mentions that Cookie Gilchrist today has his own website at http://www.cookiegilchrist.com

Edit to add: It looks like Cookie Gilchrist has taken his page down. Oh well! I lived in New Orleans when he led the boycott of the league's all-star game there. Then I remember when he refused induction into the Canadian Football Hall of Fame, claiming that he was the victim of racism. According to the book, he was a headache wherever he went. But he was a great player!

Edited by GA Russell, 16 January 2008 - 12:42 AM.


#11 dumpy mama

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Posted 16 January 2008 - 12:27 AM

just so you know, i read these updates. i enjoy it. i respect your interest in the CFL. i think it is a cool league and it deserves some attention.
i wish ricky ray had gotten more of a chance with the jets! i thought he had something to offer.
i wonder if pacman jones will soon be in the CFL!

#12 dumpy mama

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Posted 16 January 2008 - 12:29 AM

i guess the reason i dig the CFL is that it is tough to get a shot in the NFL...plenty of talented people don't get a proper shot. there is enough talent to go around...i mean a lot of the NFL rostering has to do with familiarity between coaches and players, players knowledge and fit in a particular system, etc...

#13 GA Russell

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Posted 16 January 2008 - 12:37 AM

ak, thanks for your interest!

For as long as I have been a sports fan, I have felt that in pro football there was no shortage of quality players. The shortage was in competent management and coaching.

However, the last two years we have seen a great many dropped passes in both leagues, and I now feel that there is a shortage of quality pass receivers.

Remember the Super Bowl between the Steelers and the Seahawks? That game was loaded with dropped passes by both teams. One of the Seattle players took the brunt of the criticism in the press, but he had plenty of company.

I believe the fault lies with the college coaches, who are recruiting and playing guys with speed instead of guys who can catch.

#14 dumpy mama

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Posted 16 January 2008 - 12:54 AM

i think it was jeramy stevens who dropped the passes and he was more known for being big than being quick. he was a big but i guess athletic tight end. but he was also a headcase with legal and substance issues!
not that i am going to argue with you for surmising there is a lack of quality WRs. however perhaps you should also consider the quality of those passing the ball to the WRs...

#15 GA Russell

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Posted 16 January 2008 - 05:15 PM

however perhaps you should also consider the quality of those passing the ball to the WRs...

ak, for a couple of years now there has been a shortage of quality QBs in the Canadian league. Good QBs have played well past their prime because the teams didn't have anybody to replace them. Danny McManus and Damon Allen come to mind right away. Today, the BC Lions are the only team whose backup is considered any good.

I get the impression from commentators that many are unimpressed with most NFL QBs as well; but I am not sure whether the quality is going down, or maybe we just have more commentators who treat as a bum anybody who is not good enough to be in the Hall of Fame.

Still, my feeling about the pass receivers is based upon the number of times I've seen passes dropped that hit the guy's hands. Can't blame the QB for that!

#16 GA Russell

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Posted 16 January 2008 - 05:57 PM

Wow! Kent Austin has resigned as head coach of the Roughriders to become the offensive coordinator of Ole Miss.
http://www.canada.co...o...169&k=78303

#17 GA Russell

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Posted 16 January 2008 - 08:28 PM

Here's a surprise: Jason Maas has signed with the Eskimos to back up Ricky Ray.

This article says that they are now admitting that Maas had two arm surgeries and two back surgeries. No wonder he hasn't been any good since he left Edmonton two years ago!

Personally, I'll be a little surprised if he makes the team. I think he's through. The article says that Montreal cut him, and I don't think they would have if he had anything left. Edmonton has Stefan LeFors as their backup QB, and I don't see them paying three guys who can start, unlike BC.

http://www.globespor...tsFootball/home

#18 B. Clugston

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Posted 16 January 2008 - 08:36 PM

Wow! Kent Austin has resigned as head coach of the Roughriders to become the offensive coordinator of Ole Miss.
http://www.canada.co...o...169&k=78303



Defensive co-ordinator Richie Hall seems to be the favourite to replace Austin. It makes sense to hire within after winning a Grey Cup.

Meanwhile, Roy Shivers is with B.C. He's a real character, so I'm looking forward to hearing some entertaining interviews with him next season.

#19 Chuck Nessa

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Posted 16 January 2008 - 08:44 PM

So, what's the story with "Canadian bacon" and why does McDonalds sell ham under this name?

#20 GA Russell

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Posted 19 January 2008 - 02:15 PM

Don Wittman has died. I had the pleasure of meeting him at a CFL ballgame in 1996.

He was a favorite of mine, and I always thought that it was a mistake to move him off the Grey Cup in favor of the next generation.

Here's his Canadian Press obituary:
http://www.globespor...lobeSports/home

#21 B. Clugston

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Posted 19 January 2008 - 05:50 PM

Don Wittman has died. I had the pleasure of meeting him at a CFL ballgame in 1996.

He was a favorite of mine, and I always thought that it was a mistake to move him off the Grey Cup in favor of the next generation.

Here's his Canadian Press obituary:
http://www.globespor...lobeSports/home


RIP.

I agree about moving him off the Grey Cup--Wittman loved the CFL; Cuthbert doesn't have a dramatic flair.

#22 B. Clugston

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Posted 19 January 2008 - 05:53 PM

So, what's the story with "Canadian bacon" and why does McDonalds sell ham under this name?


It's a mystery to us. We call it back bacon. Ask an American.

#23 B. Clugston

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Posted 19 January 2008 - 05:58 PM

http://www.tsn.ca/bl...nzie/?id=227713


Bob McKenzie on Don Wittman:

http://www.tsn.ca/bl...nzie/?id=227713

There are many in the broadcast world who will have better stories of the life of the late Don Wittman than myself, so let me say this not as a broadcaster but as a long-time television viewer and Canadian sports fan:

Don Wittman was Canada's finest broadcaster.

At least he was for me.

He was certainly the most versatile.

Whether he was calling hockey or curling or football or track and field or swimming or any Olympic event you care to name, he was a sheer joy to listen to.

For starters, he had the voice. A great and rich and deep baritone, just made for broadcasting.

When he called the game, he did so in such as a way to let the event come to you. He never got in the way, never imposed himself on the game or event. Rather, he was the conduit for the game to get to the viewer.

I cannot recall how many times I was watching something on CBC with ‘Witt' broadcasting and I remarked to myself how much I was enjoying the event, how Don had a knack of entertaining, informing and allowing the game to breathe. He made the game or event better. That may never have been truer than when I would be on vacation in the summer, listening to whatever Olympic Games they happened to be. If it got any better than Don Wittman and Geoff Gowan doing track and field, I'm not aware of it.

Quite frankly, I never understood why he didn't do more hockey games because I would just as soon listen to Don do a game as anyone, to be honest.

I only ever worked once with Don Wittman. It was the 1990 World Junior Championship in Helsinki, Finland, on the CBC. I was really just starting out in broadcasting, a part time gig for me at the time, and Don was calling the WJC with Scotty Bowman as his color man. Brian Williams was the host and I was mostly along for the ride, working with three legends, and doing a little intermission analysis.

Don was a gentleman, easy to be with, easy to deal with and fun to be around.

And they just don't make broadcasters any more professional, versatile and enjoyable to listen to than Don Wittman.

He will be missed.

#24 GA Russell

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Posted 20 January 2008 - 06:12 PM

Here's another fond remembrance of Don Wittman:
http://slam.canoe.ca...783503-sun.html

What I remember him most for are his broadcasts with Ron Lancaster and Leo Cahill.

#25 GA Russell

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Posted 20 January 2008 - 10:20 PM

I suppose you all noticed that tonight's NFC Championship Game featured ex-Ottawa Renegade Lawrence Tynes of the Giants against ex-Winnipeg Blue Bomber Jon Ryan of the Packers.

#26 GA Russell

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Posted 22 January 2008 - 11:30 PM

Here's an article about Lawrence Tynes from the Canadian perspective:
http://www.globespor...tsFootball/home

#27 GA Russell

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Posted 23 January 2008 - 06:31 PM

The Argos released Troy Davis today, so I guess he's done.
http://www.globespor...tsFootball/home

#28 GA Russell

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Posted 25 January 2008 - 07:27 PM

Jeff Garcia was chosen today for the Pro Bowl game in a couple of weeks. This will be his fourth Pro Bowl.

IMO, this is a "Please forgive us for not picking you last year" sort of thing. He had an amazing run with the Eagles last year, but the selections were made too early, and Tony Romo was picked ahead of him, which last year was a mistake.

This year Garcia played very little the second half of the season, with a back injury. Of course, without him Tampa Bay would not have made the playoffs.

http://www.globespor...tsFootball/home

#29 GA Russell

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Posted 27 January 2008 - 10:42 PM

It was announced last year that Tony Proudfoot has ALS/Lou Gehrig's Disease. I had the pleasure of meeting him at the 1985 Grey Cup. Nice guy.

Today there is an article that says that his roommate Larry Uteck died from ALS in 2002.

Furthermore, The CFL Players Association says that 8 of its 15,000 members have ALS. The article says that in the general population only 2 of 100,000 have it.

http://slam.canoe.ca...4796663-cp.html

#30 GA Russell

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Posted 30 January 2008 - 03:40 PM

Here's a surprise. The Riders have released Corey Holmes. They did not project him to be a starter, and he was making too much money to be a backup. I have to think that he will land a job without too much difficulty.
http://slam.canoe.ca...4800738-cp.html



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