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It's that time of year again! It's time for the annual Grey Cup contest. Past winners have included Noj (twice), indestructible, Bright Moments, brownie, paul secor, Soulstation1, danasgoodstuff, B. Clugston (twice), ejp626 (twice) and BFrank. Here are the rules: 1) Pick the winning team. 2) Pick the number of total points scored by both teams (aka the tiebreaker). Since approximately half of us will pick the winning team, picking the total points is necessary to win the contest. Your total points prediction must be a number which is a multiple of five (5). The winning tiebreaker will be the one closest to the correct answer. If two are equally close, the winner will be the lower pick. If two people pick the same thing, the first to make the pick will be the winner. We going to do things a little different this year for the prize. In the past the prize has always been a $17.00 Mosaic Records Gift Card. The $17.00 represents one CD of a Mosaic box set. However, the international postage rates over the years have changed, so we will do this: If you live in the US, you will have your choice of a) the $17 Mosaic gift card or b) a bundle of three jazz-related books. If you live in Canada, your prize will be a Canadian football book. If you live anywhere else, I will paypal you the $17.00, and it will be up to you to decide what you will spend it on and in what currency. Deadline: Sunday Nov. 24, 6:00 pm eastern ***** The Grey Cup game: The Grey Cup is awarded to the world champion of what I think is the greatest game in the world, Canadian rules football. That is to say, the champion of the Canadian Football League. The Grey Cup was first awarded in 1909. They have played for it every year since then except three years during World War One. Therefore, this year's will be the 107th Grey Cup game. Fans from throughout Canada will attend the game. This year's game will see the Western champion Winnipeg Blue Bombers face the Eastern champion Hamilton Tiger-Cats. These were the two teams picked by most pre-season pundits to play in the Grey Cup, but it has been a crazy year for the whole league, and no one expected what we have now. Hamilton's quarterback was Jeremiah Masoli, but he hurt his leg and was lost for the season. His backup is Dane Evans. Nobody had heard of him a year ago, but he has filled in nicely. He played his college ball at Tulsa. Hamilton's biggest star is a little guy named Speedy Banks who is the fastest runner in the league. Banks was voted the Eastern Most Outstanding Player. We will find out Thursday if he wins the award for the whole country. He grew up here in Raleigh, and I once met his dad at a gas station when we were filling up our tanks! Winnipeg's quarterback was Matt Nichols. He too hurt his leg and was lost for the year. His backup is Chris Streveler, who was a rookie last year. He played his college ball at Minnesota and South Dakota. On October 9 (just before the trading deadline), the Bombers obtained Zach Collaros from the Toronto Argonauts. Collaros was Saskatchewan's quarterback, but suffered a severe concussion in the first game, and never played again for the Roughriders. Saskatchewan gave him away to Toronto, who never took him off the injured list. Collaros was a star for Hamilton in 2015 when he too hurt his leg and was lost for the season. He has never regained his success. He played his college ball at Cincinnati. Winnipeg's big star is running back Andrew Harris. So it looks like we will see Hamilton's passing offense against Winnipeg's running offense. (By the way, the Hamilton Tigers were founded in 1869, the same year as the Cincinnati Red Stockings.) The location of the game is chosen years in advance. This year's game will be played in Calgary. Eastern fans always root for the Eastern champion, and Western fans always root for the Western champion. I expect the majority of the crowd to be cheering for the Bombers, who have not won the Grey Cup since 1990. The Tiger-Cats last won it in 1999, so it has been a while for them too. ***** The game will be carried live in the US on ESPN2, starting at 6:00 pm eastern Sunday. You can listen to the game here: http://www.tsn.ca/radio (To listen to the game, you will need Windows Media Player which you can download for free. So you might want to plan ahead if you don't already have it.) You can study articles analyzing the upcoming game as well as articles about the season as it unfolded in the CFL thread, which I will be updating during the course of this week. Good luck everyone! ***** Here's my pick: I'm going to do you a favor. I expect Hamilton to win, so I'm going to go with the Blue Bombers. Winnipeg - 50