Thursday, October 30, 2014

This And That

--The weekly collection of thoughts running through my muddled mind

Its been quiet in Riderville over the last week as the team is on its second and final bye of the season, but make no doubt about it. I'm sure the coaching staff has been working hard all week getting this team ready for the final few games of the season.

I had this sent to me and I had to pass it along although many of you may have already seen it.  During the bye week, the team picture was taken. Here it is!

That's a little cold and to many of the players it may be a tad insulting to say the squad is a one man team, but one cannot argue this team's fortunes went south the moment Bryant Turner hit DD in the Banjo Bowl as what was a great season went down the toilet in rather quick fashion.  The injury to one player seemingly has sunk the season.  There is still a chance to revive that season, but I think its safe to say that will happen through the East again and while the East has not been strong this year, I don't like their chances, but they still have a chance and as long as they do, the Rider Nation will be behind them.

The two questions I have about the football team now as they limp to the finish line are this

1) Is Darian coming back and if so, what type of player will he be?

   --We were told Durant would dress for the regular season finale against Edmonton, but I'd be surprised if the Riders play him knowing where their fate lies. There is no reason to play number 4 unless its to shake some rust off and even if you do that, what happens if he should get hurt again. Is that a risk the team really wants to take?

    --When and if Darian comes back, it is unrealistic to start thinking he will be slinging the football around completing pass after pass, racking up yard after yard and leading the team down the field to touchdown after touchdown. The guy hasn't played in how long? He needs some time to get back into game shape!  While I and many others would love to see DD come back and throw for 350 and 3 TD's, I can't realistically see that happening. Many are putting the Saviour label on him if he returns and that may not be a fair position to put him in

2)  When do you head down East?

   --Considering the Riders got their doors blown off in visits to Montreal, Hamilton or Toronto. Would going out early change that? It was suggested on Thursday's Sportscage the team leave early and I agree with that, but would you leave 5 days early and do your entire practice routine in the city where you will play the Eastern semi-final. That would be a costly expenditure, but I think its one the Riders would take. Why not?

The first set of ballots have been sent out for CFL yearly awards. I used to hold a ballot, but I don't anymore so take these for what you will, but here are my Rider award winners.


  I found it interesting when doing a story for that there isn't much difference when it comes to grading out between TGeorge, John Chick and Ricky Foley. Chick had a monster first half and Foley has had a monster second half, but number 93 has just been consistent in getting the job done week after week registering a career high in sacks. That consistency and all-around good play gives him the nod to this blogger.


  How can you give George MOP and Chick top defensive player? It happens a lot of times in sports and that's how close it is between the two Americans.  Chick deserves some form of recognition for his play this year and I am certainly not going to snub him twice. I could put him in MOP and George here, but the consistency argument comes up again and while he has been effective, he hasn't been the sack happy John Chick that he was in the first half. That's not a shot its just reality.  I think big 97 is better now than what he was when he left for the NFL and I think he will continue doing what he did this year in 2015 and beyond.

TOP CANADIAN --- Ricky Foley

   Is there any doubt here? In fact, I think Foley could win the league award. He is having his best ever season and he is finishing strong. Someone asked me the other day if Chick and Foley were a better combination than Chick and Stevie Baggs. Absolutely!! He's having a career year with 12 sacks and if he wasn't one of the league's top homegrown players before, he is now.


   This one is tough as well. The unit has been fantastic, but Brendon Labatte has missed time, I Chris Best has missed time as have Xavier Fulton and Dan Clark. Heenan had a couple of rough games, but he is one of the big reasons the Rider running game has been as good as it has been. He has helped open up some massive holes. Could Big Ben win the West nominee and perhaps do what Labatte did last year and win it all. I doubt it, but I think he has the ability to win the top lineman award very soon.

ROOKIE OF THE YEAR ---  Derek Walker

  Its a toss-up between Walker and Trevor Guyton, but I will go with Walker and his 5 sacks and give all four members of that D-Line some love. Guyton has had a good year too, but I've noticed Walker a lot more. He's the guy for me.

SPECIAL TEAMS PLAYER  --- Tristan Jackson

  This might be the easiest one. Jackson leads the league in combined return yards and he has more often than not given the team good field position. Weston Dressler may have taken a couple of kicks back, but Weston also showed up midway through the season while TJack just kept returning kick after kick after kick.

Agree or disagree?

Other thoughts

  --Madison Bumgarner's 2014 playoffs and the World Series in particular has to be considered as one of the greatest of all-time. I thought we would see Bumgarner in Game 7, but I didn't think we would see him for five innings. To come back and do that on two days rest was simply amazing.

  --If you are a baseball fan, tell me your heart didn't go into your throat when Gregor Blanco had Alex Gordon's hit get by him and go all the way to the fence. The Giants just about Bucknered themselves.

  --Can we get "Chevyguy" to do all championship or all-star game MVP presentations?. That poor bastard had to have soiled himself. The funny thing is he is getting his 15 minutes of fame today as Chevrolet is backing him 100 percent as really they should.

  --Evgeni Malkin beat up Justin Williams??!! I wonder if Don Cherry will mention that on Saturday!

--Week 9 NFL Lock Of The Week---Kansas City over Jets
  Week 9 NFL Upset Of The Week ---Miami over San Diego

--Saturday will be the last home game and perhaps the last game period that Frank McCrystal coaches for the University of Regina Rams. I am guessing Rams alumni that can make it to the game will be there and that a good crowd will be on hand. I am hoping Regina's football community as a whole comes to the game and salutes a guy that has helped make that program great.  There is a chance the Rams could play the Huskies in a semi-final game and I think I speak for people in both cities when I say the Frank farewell tour needs to go through Saskatoon. Win or lose for the Rams. the atmosphere and energy for that game would be something else and I am guessing McCrystal would come up with a quote or two to sell a couple of extra tickets. Can you imagine the scene at the end of the game if Regina won? That walk off the field would be epic!  I will have the play by play of the Alberta-Rams game with the big man Chop Bresch Saturday at 2 on Access, but do yourselves a favour and go to the game yourself. Its supposed to be sunny and 11 so don't blame the weather.

 --It hasn't been a good year for the Durant boys on the gridiron. We all know about Darian and his brother Justin tore his biceps Monday against Washington and is done for the season.

 --Get well Gordie, a country and a sport has you in their heart!

 --Is it just me or are the entertainment reporters on ETalk and ET Canada, the most vacuous ditzes on television? GAHHHHH!!!

  --If its called a drive thru, why do you stop??

  --Have a good weekend!!! GO SEAHAWKS!!


Anonymous said...

No Country For Old Men;
Chick, Durant, Foley, .......

Anonymous said...



Overall CFL gm record on the books.

Guess who's name Is attached to this dismal so called professional sports win/loss/tie record? with most fanbase accepting of this continual sub-standard performance?

* Does not include assistant gm record.

Anonymous said...

T-Jack is definitely the special teams nominee. He's been great. Quite frankly no one on the O-line is deserving to win top lineman...yes its been that bad. Rams will win on the back of Atlee Simon. That kid is awesome

Anonymous said...

Chick has to be MOP. Without him, George and Foley don't have the seasons they are having,

Legree for rookie?

Darian for most irreplaceable player. Great joke as well. OUCH!

Anonymous said...

I agree with you on Foley. I think he's been best Canadian in league.

Anonymous said...

George over Chick?

Anonymous said...

One man team....HA HA HA. GOLD!

Anonymous said...

Legree gets my vote for top rookie. I think Foley can win top CDN as well.

Anonymous said...

Heenan?? Cmon Scruffy!!


Anonymous said...

I might put LeGree in for rookie and I'd leave the O-line spot open. None of them deserve an award unless it's for the most holding penalties.

Anonymous said...

Durant isn't your MOP? Have you seen what happened to this team!


Anonymous said...


I will be there.


Anonymous said...

Anon 2.

Take your head out of your ass already and take your soapbox with you. Taman has done a great job and is one devastating injury from perhaps being royalty in this place by being the GM for two championship teams. It may still happen if not this year next.

Anonymous said...

The one thing about this blog that I like more than Rod's



Anonymous said...

Once the City of Regina was awarded 2013 Grey Cup Championship on Taylor Field, Immediate collective plan put into place to win at all costs, spend at all costs led by Mr. J. Hopson VP of operations not b taman (Taman just the lackey) for the home field championship win to appease a long suffering fanbase. MISSION ACCOMPLISHED ! Thank you Mr J. Hopson ! Now back to your normal programing of mediocre teams led by b taman !

Anonymous said...

Crying, but not a loser like some who accept inconsistent year after year struggle to assemble a team and the associated perpetual losing with the same lame sorry a** excuses.

Sorry, not a Rider fan until Taman steps aside and has nothing more to do with the on field product by moving upstairs to other assigned duties, my perogative. Still support the team organization though, lotteries etc. Taman's overall GM/Asistant GM record speakes for itself, pathetic! No long term team build developement or direction. Anyone could buy a Grey Cup victory like 2013 with a open check book, doesn't take a genius.

Anonymous said...

Happy Halloween, Saskatchewan comes through Hamilton in the East Division, sweet redemption awaits, payback a b*tch. Whooo, scary, aren't you prairie bumpkins scared on this 31st day of October, whooo !!!!

Anonymous said...

Dream on and keep on living on the 2013 memories brought to you by Jim Hopson. No Grey Cup titles happening in the foreseeable future at Sk. Why don't you try taking your head out of your own ass, please try.

Anonymous said...

I concur Alex, but who's Rod ?

Big Dano.Scratchyitch

Anonymous said...

Well done San Francisco Giants, congratulations.

Anonymous said...

I can't believe you Taman supporters. You're absolutely brainwashed. who's he recruited? Who's he discovered? In umpteen years he's found two, I repeat two bona fide CFL football players. That was Geroy Simon back in Winnipeg and Kory Sheets in the present situation and they're both gone, he hasn't replaced either one, hasn't even come close. But keep buying Green merchandise and someday we'll be able to afford to buy that jerk out and get a real GM, someone that actually has some contacts.

Anonymous said...

That joke is sad but true.

Anonymous said...

This doesn't mean anything when there is no name attached at the bottom chicken@%{<!
You know who!

Anonymous said...

Still too chicken to put your name on here!

Anonymous said...

And still scared!

Anonymous said...

Nice try cupcake!
Y'er welcome!

Anonymous said...

Second your opinion Anonymous.
Doubt Taman was personally or actually responsible for finding/recruiting $imon. Sheets was a walk on at one of the free agent camps down in Florida. It's the behind the scene grunts (scouting dept) who find the player talent and assess while he sits back and takes all the credit. Taman wouldn't know professional football player talent if it came up and introduced itself. This gm not even wanted nor allowed on any Big 10 college campus down south, any campus for that matter which is a major hindrance to the ongoing team product at Saskatchewan, hence his style of trolling the internet and signing reject after reject, other's cast-offs.

Anonymous said...

ET go home !