Monday, November 23, 2015

Something to "Mitch" About

--It is now official. The 103rd Grey Cup will have the 2nd year Ottawa REDBLACKS  against the Edmonton Eskimos after two games where good old fashioned CFL football that Canadians love returned. Who ya got?

--The Eastern final was a dandy that ended on a play that to me basically cinches the MOP for Henry Burris. The football gods were not going to let Ottawa lose this back and forth affair as Greg Ellingson reached up and snatched a Burris pass on a play Ottawa simply had to have and raced 90 some yards to send the "R"Nation into a frenzy. If Burris doesn't make that play, the REDBLACKS are kicking into the wind and the end result likely would have been what it was last week with Justin Medlock kicking a last play field goal. I didn't think it would come down to the final moments with Jeremiah Masoli quarterbacking the Ti-Cats, but he played his heart out and maybe deserved a better fate. Somehow I think it will take a while to wipe the smile off of "Smilin Hank's" face. Somehow I think this will result in another 5 Burris columns to be written by Rob Vanstone as well.

--As for the Western final, it was Edmonton all the way as they capitalized on an early turnover to gain momentum that I don't think they ever let go of in beating Calgary.  I don't know about you, but it warms my heart to see the Stampeders and Ti-Cats both on the outside looking in. Yes, I would have loved to see former Rams QB Marc Mueller get another Grey Cup ring, but it won't be this year.  There is new blood in the Grey Cup as two teams who haven't been to the big game in a long time will be there. Winnipeg are you ready?

--For those who care, the Weather Network is predicting a high of minus 8 in Winnipeg on Grey Cup Sunday. They don't obviously have a deal with Mother Nature that Regina has had when it comes to Grey Cup games. Do you remember how cold it was on the day before Grey Cup 2013 and how nice it was when the game finally kicked off.

--By the way, wasn't it refreshing to see both teams actually accept and touch the respective divisional trophies. They didn't avoid it like it was some kind of disease. More teams need to start doing that!! 

--Chris Jones as the new coach and GM of the Riders? He has a pretty good thing going in Edmonton. Why would he leave? I can't buy that one. I will say this though. With Jones, John Hufnagel, Paul Lapolice and Mike Benavides all at Commonwealth Stadium yesterday, someone in that mix will likely be the new head coach of the Riders. If you missed it, TSN's Gary Lawless threw out the name of John Murphy---the assistant GM in Calgary and Ottawa's assistant GM Brock Sunderland.

--Cam Cole of the National Post brought up a very great thing in a column this week. Cole says the 40 million a year contract TSN has with the CFL pays the salary cap for all teams meaning teams should be financially sound because of gate receipts (even though there has been dwindling attendance) and other things.  Cole also mentions TSN re-upped its deal with the CFL until the year 2021. Did that get publicized? If it did, I missed it. While the product is suffering, the bottom line isn't. If the suits can find a way to get the CFL front and center again, this league can flourish.  The question is do the suits want to find a way to get the CFL front and center again when they know the TSN money is keeping the league afloat.

--If you haven't seen him play yet, watch University of North Carolina quarterback Marquise Williams and tell me he hasn't got CFL written all over him. Williams has broken a lot of school records including most TD's that were held by some guy named Durant that has become pretty good north of the border. I'd love to know whose neg list he is on. Then again, I would love to know who is on the neg list of many teams as we start to approach bowl season.

--What has happened to Sidney Crosby. He only has 10 points? Is it Phil Kessel related?

--His team may have been beaten in Vancouver Saturday night, but there is no better player in the NHL right now than Patrick Kane. Despite his off-season problems, Kane has shown he is head and shoulders above everyone else. I would still take his teammate Jonathan Toews if I had my choice of anyone to start a team up with, but right now Kane is #1.

--Travis Hamonic would be a great addition in Edmonton, however if it means the Oilers sending Jordan Eberle to the Islanders, I say no. Yes, I am being completely selfish when I say that. A package involving Justin Schultz, Anton Lander and maybe even a Brandon Davidson would suit me better.  Schultz needs a new home and Hamonic wants one and both have the same salary cap hit so that makes sense to me, but in the world of the NHL, what does make sense these days.

--The reason for that last statement is a report suggesting the NHL will institute bye weeks next season. Really? NHL'ers need a bye week? Cmon!! This is beyond ridiculous.

--The win by the Dallas Cowboys over Miami happens in Tony Romo's first game back after injury and it also ended a karma-like stat. Since getting rid of Greg Hardy, the Carolina Panthers have not lost dating back to last year and since he joined the Cowboys, Hardy had walked off the field a loser in every game until yesterday.  Other takeaways from Week 11

  • The Oakland Raiders have a ways to go before they can be considered a contender like they had been by some. You can't lose to Detroit the way the Lions have played, but they did
  • The Green Bay Packers came up with a defining win in Minnesota by spanking the Vikings. Minnesota isn't ready yet if that game was any indication, but they are close 
  • When do you start putting Cam Newton in the MVP talk if you haven't already
  • What are those who thought Jameis Winston would be a bust saying now. The number one pick in the NFL draft was rolling with 5 TD's against Philly and now has 15 on the season 
  • Marshawn who? Thomas Rawls will be a nice replacement for Lynch in Seattle when his days in Seahawk Blue come to an end. Without the rookie, Seattle might have blown another one. Why don't the Seahawks throw more to Jimmy Graham? I truly don't understand why they traded for the best tight end in the game and then not utilize him more. 
  • Matt Hasselbeck is showing us 40 is the new 30. 
  • Did Brock Osweiler's performance seal Peyton Manning's fate?

--The Uteck and Mitchell Bowls were played Saturday and all of a sudden many started to tweet about what a shame it is there isn't more Canadian university football on TV. What the hell took everyone so long to figure that out?  It just baffles me how our two main sports networks and CBC can ignore CIS football until it gets down to crunch time.  It is why I really hope Jim Mullin and David Dube can be successful in getting the Northern 8/10 proposal going and we get matchups featuring teams from across the country.  It would be better football and it would prevent some, but not all blowouts like the 72-8 embarassment Calgary delivered to the Rams this year.  The partnership Canada West has with Global and SHAW/Access  is a great one and is one that must be fostered going into year 2, but it would be huge for Canadian university football from coast-to-coast if we could see games every weekend featuring the best teams instead of for three weeks in November. There has to be a way.

--The Cougar mens basketball team had a terrible 3rd quarter on Friday night and it cost them a game against Lethbridge, but they came back in tremendous fashion Saturday as they crushed the Pronghorns. As I mentioned Friday, it is going to be a great year of basketball at the CKHS this year and a lot of people showed up to watch both Dave Taylor and Steve Burrows' teams do their thing.  Here's hoping that trend continues in two weeks time when Winnipeg is here.

--Sheamus is the WWE champ? I guess they had to do something with all their big names out, but another Roman Reigns losing from someone cashing in the Money in the Bank briefcase is a little lame. 

--I was very happy to hear Dan Shulman will be calling 30 Blue Jays games this year. I was very disappointed to hear he wouldn't call more. That would have been tremendous.

--That's all I got. Enjoy the week!


Anonymous said...

So happy to see Calgary get beat. The torch has officially been passed.

Anonymous said...

Scruffy; You forgot to pump O'Day's tires and yes it's Phil Kessel related.

75flyersbestteamever said...

The RedBlacks (still think its the worst name in sports history...ok maybe the Castor Raiders hockey team still wins that title.) go from doormats to showing up in the big dance... showing anybody can rise and grab the brass that teams can literally say "wait until next year" and be serious...
...that said Edmonton 52 Ottawa 5.

Anonymous said...

Cam Newton MVP? HA HA HA! You might want to watch me tonight and then decide

Sincerely yours

T. Brady

Anonymous said...

Jason Maas is a little bit of an improvement over Mike Gibson wouldn't you say?

Anonymous said...

I'm not buying the Jones talk either. THere is no plausible reason as to why he would leave Edmonton to come to the cesspool that is the Riders. None whatsoever!

Anonymous said...

TSN is keeping the CFL afloat so they can do whatever they want with their investment. It is obvious they don't care a lot about the investment judging by the job they do. Put a little love in your product and see what happens!

Couldn't agree with you more on the university football talk. These are the CFL stars of tomorrow. TSN should be showing games every week on one of their many networks.


Anonymous said...

Shologan, Evans and Milo. All guys the Riders got rid of that they shouldn't have. Who is to blame for that? BRENDAN TAMAN!

Anonymous said...

Hey Moron
Shologan and Evans were lost in dispersal draft.
Milo inconsistency cost him his job here,lucky to get a second chance.

Anonymous said...

It doesn't end there, many a player sent packing by the inept Brendan Taman. Most of those players now all stars or big team contributors in their own right.