Friday, January 31, 2020

This Week In Cougar Athletics

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Home Events – Friday
Swimming at Colleges Cup, 5:00 to 6:30 PM (Lawson Aquatic Centre)
Women's Basketball vs. UNBC, 6:00 PM (CKHS)
Men's Hockey vs. Alberta, 7:00 PM (The Co-operators Centre)
Men's Basketball vs. UNBC, 8:00 PM (CKHS)

Home Events – Saturday
Swimming at Colleges Cup, 9:00 to 10:30 AM / 3:00 to 4:30 PM (Lawson Aquatic Centre)
Men's Hockey vs. Alberta, 3:00 PM (The Co-operators Centre)
Women's Basketball vs. UNBC, 6:00 PM (CKHS)
Men's Basketball vs. UNBC, 8:00 PM (CKHS)

Away Events – Friday
Track & Field at Bison Classic, Day 1 (Winnipeg, Man.)
Women's Hockey at Alberta, 7:00 PM MT (Edmonton, Alta.)
Women's Volleyball at UBC, 7:00 PM PT (Vancouver, B.C.)

Away Events – Saturday
Track & Field at Bison Classic, Day 2 (Winnipeg, Man.)
Women's Hockey at Alberta, 2:00 PM MT (Edmonton, Alta.)
Women's Volleyball at UBC, 7:00 PM PT (Vancouver, B.C.)

Swimming (Men's U SPORTS Ranking: No. 9) – The Cougars host the Colleges Cup this Friday and Saturday at the Lawson Aquatic Centre. One of the major tune-up meets on the schedule, the competition will feature four Canada West teams including the Cougars, Calgary, Lethbridge, and Manitoba. The first session is set for Friday evening from 5:00 to 6:30, while the second session is Saturday morning (9:00 to 10:30) and the final session is slated for Saturday afternoon (3:00 to 4:30).

Men's Hockey – The Cougars registered a huge late-season road sweep at Manitoba last weekend, coming back from a 3-0 deficit on Friday for a 5-4 shootout win before cruising to a 6-3 win on Saturday. The U of R currently holds the sixth and final Canada West playoff spot with four games to go, as the Cougars have 19 points and are two up on seventh-place UBC. The Cougars' last four games of the conference schedule are against the top two teams in Canada West, including at home this weekend against No. 4 Alberta at The Co-operators Centre. Game time against the Golden Bears is set for 7:00 on Friday night and 3:00 on Saturday afternoon. Prior to Saturday's contest the Cougars will honour Dawson MacAuley and Landon Peel, the team's two fifth-year players.

Women's Basketball – The Cougars came up with a road sweep over Manitoba, winning 98-81 on Friday before holding on for a 67-65 victory on Saturday to improve to 8-8 on the season. The Cougars now rank seventh in Canada West in RPI and could clinch a playoff berth as soon as Friday with a victory over UNBC and some help on the out-of-town scoreboard. Game time against the Timberwolves is set for 6:00 on both Friday night and Saturday night at the Centre for Kinesiology, Health & Sport, with Saturday's game set to be the last regular season game in a U of R uniform for fifth-year veterans Michaela Kleisinger, Avery Pearce, and Alexi Rowden.

Men's Basketball – The Cougars came out on the wrong end of two close scores last week at Manitoba, falling 72-69 to the Bisons on Friday before suffering a 79-74 defeat on Saturday. Still very much in contention for a home play-in game, the Cougars rank No. 9 in Canada West RPI heading into this weekend's home series against UNBC. Game times are set for the usual 8:00 PM on both Friday and Saturday, with Greishe Clerjuste and Samuel Hillis to be honoured as part of Senior Night prior to Saturday's game.

Women's Hockey – The Cougars defeated Manitoba 3-0 last Friday to win their seventh consecutive game, but had the streak snapped on Saturday after the Bisons held on for a 2-1 win. The U of R has collected 20 of a possible 24 points in eight games so far in January and the Cougars continue to sit in fourth place in the Canada West standings. The Cougars have just four games remaining on the conference schedule, including two this weekend on the road against No. 5-ranked and Canada West-leading Alberta.

Track & Field (Women's U SPORTS Ranking: No. 7) – After a weekend off from competition for most of the squad, the Cougars will send a full team to Winnipeg this weekend for the Jim Daly Bison Classic. This weekend will serve as the first of two final meets before championship season begins, as the Cougars will also compete at the SPIRE Division I Classic in Ohio next weekend before the Canada West and U SPORTS Championships later this month.

Women's Volleyball – The Cougars played Saskatchewan tough at home last weekend but lost both matches, falling to the Huskies in four sets on Friday and in the full five sets on Saturday. The U of R has six matches remaining in Canada West play, including this weekend with a pair of contests in Vancouver against the UBC Thunderbirds.

Trevor Harris Signs Extension In Edmonton

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The Edmonton Eskimos announce the contract extension of quarterback Trevor Harris, keeping him in Green and Gold through 2022.

“Trevor gives us a chance to win every game that he steps on the field and his leadership and dedication off the field are second to none. We’re thrilled to keep him in the Green and Gold for the next three years and now we can start building around him,” says Brock Sunderland, Eskimos general manager and vice president of football operations.

Harris originally signed in Edmonton as a free agent on Feb. 12, 2019.

In 13 games (13 starts) last season, Harris completed 343-of-478 passes (71.8%), for 4,027 yards with 16 touchdowns. He also recorded 48 rushes for 139 yards with six touchdowns. In the East Semi-Final, Harris set a playoff record for consecutive completions (22) and completion percentage (92.3%).

“I’m grateful to be in Edmonton for the long haul. I have a deep conviction that we have something special building here and I wanted to show it through this contract, and I am thrilled to be part of it,” says Harris. “I can promise there will never be a day taken for granted that I get to be in the Green and Gold and the quarterback here. I’m viciously motivated to deliver daily for our fans and this city. I’m thankful for my Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ. My family and I are thrilled to be with the Eskimos for the foreseeable future!”

Last season, he was twice named CFL Player of the Week (Week 1, Week 10) and CFL Player of the Month (June, August). He also earned Eskimos Most Outstanding Player honours.

Prior to Edmonton, Harris spent four seasons with the Toronto Argonauts (2012-15) and three seasons with the Ottawa RedBlacks (2016-18).

In 133 career games, he completed 1,855-of-2,267 pass attempts, amassing 22,182 yards with 120 touchdowns. He adds 706 yards on 181 carries with nine touchdowns.

(Edmonton Eskimos)

This and That

--Welcome to Friday and the usual assortment of things running through my muddled mind.   As always, these come in no particular order.

-We have a long ways to go until CFL training camp begins.  With that being the case, how would you rank the starting QB's in the league as it stands right now.   I would still put Bo Levi Mitchell and Mike Reilly in the numbers 1 and 2 spot, but who is number 3. Is it Jeremiah Masoli? Is it Cody Fajardo? Is it Vernon Adams?  I would probably go Fajardo, but then again he is in my own backyard.   Are Fajardo and Adams that much different when you take a good look at it.  Where does Trevor Harris fit in the equation.  Let the debate begin!

--Say what you will about Bo Levi, but he needs to get his Grey Cup ring and his MOP ring back. The bigger question is why are you leaving those things in your vehicle!!  In this day, you just can't do that---not even for a second!

--Is CFL week dead? If it is that's a shame as the league had something they could really work with.

--The Chiefs or the Niners?  Who have ya got in Super Bowl 54. I'm taking KC to win 31-21.  I just think Patrick Mahomes and that Kansas City offence will have their way with the Niners defence once they get it figured out.  It may take a quarter and a bit, but once they get rolling, they will be visiting the endzone.

--I'm OK with the Riders holding training camp in Regina this year.  Its been a long time since that happened.  Some think with the amenities Mosaic Stadium has that it should be there every year.  The Riders want to take their product to Saskatoon too and share it with people in the Bridge City and camp is the perfect time to do that.

--Robyn Silvernagle will be back at the Scotties as the host rink after winning the Saskatchewan title Tuesday afternoon in Melville.  After finishing third at her first Scotties last year in an event where she won the round-robin, Silvernagle will be a tough out with a home province crowd firmly behind her, It is going to be a lot of fun at Mosaic Place next month when the Scotties comes back to Moose Jaw.

--As for the men, there is nothing to indicate that we won't see a Kirk Muyres-Matt Dunstone final for the second year in a row.  The two meet for the first playoff spot this afternoon.  One has to think its the first of three games between the two at the SaskTel Tankard with that last game going Sunday afternoon in the final.

--It's the last regular season home games for the Cougar basketball teams this weekend.  Where did the time go?

--Can't help but see Max Paddock is thriving in Prince Albert since his trade from the Pats.  He's unbeaten in regulation going 4-0-0-2 with a goals against average of 1.44 and a save percentage of 946 with one shutout. 

--The Battle of Alberta appears to be back.  Let's see what Saturday brings in Calgary. You can't tell me the NHL doesn't want to see a playoff series between the Flames and Oilers.

--The Kobe Bryant tragedy will be one of those "where were you when" moments.  It is still hard to comprehend.  Just a horrible, horrible story.  Like him or not, the impact of Kobe on basketball and sports as a whole was immense.  When you are referred to as your nickname or your first name and not your last name (ie: Tiger, Shaq, Junior, A-Rod), you know you have done something.

--Kavis Reed has another football job.  He is going to be the offensive co-ordinator for the Edmonton Wildcats of the PFC.  You gotta start somewhere right!?

--That's all I got.  Enjoy the Super Bowl!

Wednesday, January 29, 2020

Bo Levi Mitchell Has Grey Cup Ring Stolen

Calgary police are asking the public to keep an eye out after Calgary Stampeders quarterback Bo Levi Mitchell’s 2018 Grey Cup and Most Outstanding Player rings were stolen from a truck.

The truck had been parked in a lot in the 3500 block of 8th Avenue N.E. on Jan. 2 when the rings were stolen, according to police.

Police say they were able to identify a suspect using CCTV images from Calgary Transit, but the rings were not recovered when the suspect was arrested.

Charges are pending against the suspect.

Investigators are asking the public, especially collectors, buyers and sellers of sports memorabilia, to be on the lookout for the rings.

“Given the uniqueness of these rings, it is highly likely that someone in our community knows where they are or will come across them,” Cst. Sean Lynn said in a statement.

“These rings represent more than just a piece of jewelry, they represent significant accomplishments and we would all like to see them returned to the rightful owner.”

Mitchell, 29, has played eight seasons with the Stampeders, including the past six as the team’s full-time starting quarterback.

He led the Stampeders to a Grey Cup championship in 2018, also winning the CFL’s Most Outstanding Player award that season.

He won his first Grey Cup ring in 2014 with the Stampeders.

Mitchell’s Most Outstanding Player ring.

(Calgary Sun) 

Tuesday, January 28, 2020

Rider Training Camp To Be Held In Regina

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The Saskatchewan Roughriders will host training camp in Regina in 2020.

The change of location comes after the University of Saskatchewan (USask) announced that the turf will be replaced at Griffiths Stadium.

The turf replacement will start in late April, making the field unavailable to the Roughriders in May when camp is hosted.

“The facilities at Griffiths Stadium have served us well over the last several years we’ve run training camp out of Saskatoon, but we are excited to see what’s to come at the stadium after the upgrades are complete,” said Roughriders President and CEO Craig Reynolds.

“We are disappointed we won’t be able to bring the team to USask for camp this year,” he added. “However, we’re looking into several ways to keep our fans in the northern half of the province connected with the team they love.”

“With the turf replacement at Griffiths Stadium beginning this spring, we certainly understand why the Saskatchewan Roughriders are unable to hold training camp at USask this year,” said Gord Hunchak, chief communications officer at USask. “We look forward to welcoming the Riders back to USask in 2021—we know the team will appreciate the new turf.”

The team will still travel to Saskatoon for its annual Green and White Day, including the State of Rider Nation, on May 23, 2020. Green and White Day activities will be hosted at Saskatoon Minor Football Field. More details will be available in the coming months.

Training Camp is scheduled to start May 17.

(Saskatchewan Roughriders)

Monday, January 27, 2020

Collaros To Remain A Bomber

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The Winnipeg Blue Bombers today announce the club has agreed to terms with Grey Cup winning quarterback Zach Collaros on a two-year contract extension. Collaros was scheduled to be a free agent next month.

Collaros, 31, started four games last season for Winnipeg, winning all four and leading the team to a Grey Cup title. His first start came October 25 against Calgary, where he went 22 of 28 for 221 yards and two touchdowns while leading the offence on a game-winning drive in the final moments.

Collaros went on to start all three playoff games and finished the 2019 postseason completing 45 of his 69 pass attempts for 630 yards, with two touchdowns and no interceptions.

Prior to joining Winnipeg, Collaros led the Saskatchewan Roughriders to a 10-4 mark in 2018, a season in which he threw for 2,999 yards and nine touchdowns while also rushing 24 times for 103 yards.

A native of Steubenville, OH, Collaros was first signed by the Argos in 2012 after an outstanding college career at Cincinnati, where he appeared in 41 games for the Bearcats, including 25 starts. He spent the 2012 and 2013 seasons with the Argos – going 5-3 as a starter in 2013 – before signing with the Tiger-Cats as a free agent in 2014.

Hamilton held a record of 16-9 in games in which Collaros started in 2015-16 and he had his best season as a pro in 2015 when he was a Most Outstanding Player candidate before a season-ending knee injury. That year, Collaros threw for 3,376 yards with 25 touchdowns and eight interceptions while appearing in just 12 games. He had 2,938 yards passing and a touchdown-to-interception ratio of 18:8 in just 10 games in 2016, and started eight games with the Ticats in 2017, with eight touchdowns and 1,767 yards passing.

Collaros was traded by the Ticats to Saskatchewan in January of 2018 for a second-round draft pick and then re-signed by the Riders in February of this year. Collaros started Saskatchewan’s opener against Hamilton this season, but was injured on the first drive. He was then traded back to the Argos on July 31st for a conditional fourth-round draft pick in 2020.

Throughout his CFL career, Collaros has thrown for 16,979 yards and 94 touchdowns. Collaros was originally acquired by Winnipeg in a trade deadline deal with the Toronto Argonauts in 2019.

(Winnipeg Blue Bombers)

Dickenson Announces Riders Coaching Staff

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Saskatchewan Roughriders Head Coach Craig Dickenson has announced the Club’s 2020 coaching staff:

 Jason Maas--Offensive Coordinator

Maas joined the Riders in December after spending the last four years as the head coach of the Edmonton Eskimos. Under Maas, the Eskimos made the post-season three out of four seasons with one appearance in the West Final in 2017 and two appearances, via crossover, in the East Final in 2016 and 2019. Prior to Edmonton, Maas was the offensive coordinator for the Ottawa Redblacks, and spent time with the Toronto Argonauts, winning a Grey Cup with them in 2012. Maas turned to coaching after an 11-year CFL career, winning two Grey Cups as a quarterback in 2003 and 2005.

 Travis Moore --Receivers

The 2020 season will be Moore’s third season with the Riders. During the 2019 season, he worked with a strong group of receivers including Kyran Moore, Naaman Roosevelt and CFL All-Star Shaq Evans who collected over 1,300 yards.  A multiple Grey Cup Champion, Moore won rings as a player in Calgary in 1998 and 2001 and as a coach with B.C. in 2011 and Ottawa in 2016. Moore has coached in the CFL since 2009, having worked with the Hamilton Tiger-Cats (2009), B.C. Lions (2010-12), Edmonton Eskimos (2013) and Ottawa Redblacks (2014-17).

Stephen Sorrells -- Offensive Linemen

Sorrels is going into his fourth season as the offensive line coach. Building off a strong 2018 season, in 2019, his offensive line allowed just 37 sacks. They also opened holes for the run game, which averaged 112.8 yards per game for a total of 2,030 yards and a league-high 26 rushing touchdowns. Sorrells has 14 years of coaching experience with stops at Southern Methodist University, Pearl River Community College, University of Alabama-Birmingham, Kenyon College, Occidental College and Faulkner University.

Tim Prinsen --Running backs

 Prinsen comes to the Riders as the former running backs coach for the Edmonton Eskimos, helping coach running back C.J. Gable to a 1,000-yard season in 2019.  He spent three years with the Esks after three seasons at the University of Alberta Golden Bears as their offensive line coach.  As a player, Prinsen is a former Eskimo and Hamilton Tiger-Cat and is a two-time Grey Cup Champion.

Josh Lambert -- Offensive Assistant

Fresh two years as the offensive coordinator at Acadia University, Lambert is rejoining the Riders with more than fifteen years of U Sports coaching experience under his belt. Lambert previously worked for the Club in the video, research and development department from 2015 to 2018. In addition to more than a decade at Acadia, Lambert also coached three seasons at St. Francis Xavier.


Jason Shivers -- Defensive Coordinator

Shivers returns to the Green and White after a successful first season as the Club’s defensive coordinator. Under Shivers, the Roughriders defence allowed the fewest offensive touchdowns (30), the fewest yards of net offence (5,299) and made the most sacks (56). Shivers will be entering his eighth year as a CFL coach having spent time with the Toronto Argonauts and the Edmonton Eskimos, wining a Grey Cup in 2015.


Richard Kent -- Defensive Backs

With more than 30 years of coaching under his belt, Kent returns for a third season with the Saskatchewan Roughriders. Kent initially joined the club in the 2013 season and helped the defence lead the league in nine categories including takeaways, interceptions and passing touchdowns allowed and was part of the Grey Cup winning coaching staff. Over his long-spanning career, Kent coached for Montreal Alouettes and the Toronto Argonauts, spent nine seasons with NFL Europe and worked 15 years in college ball including a time with Clemson where he won the ACC Championship and the 1986 Gator Bowl.

 Deion Melvin -- Linebackers

Melvin joins the Riders with 30 years of coaching experience having most recently spent time with the Western Illinois Leathernecks coaching their defensive run game and linebackers. Prior to joining the Leathernecks, Melvin was with the Lindenwood Lions where he coached the 2016 unit to a No. 8 ranking in the nation in defensive touchdowns scored. Melvin was a guest coach at the Riders 2019 training camp.

Kent Maugeri -- Special Teams

Maugeri will be entering his fifth season with the Roughriders, but his first as the special teams coach. He makes the move after spending three seasons as the Green and White’s running back coach. In 2019, the Roughriders led the league in rushing yards and had the second best rushing average per game. Maugeri first joined the team in 2016 and worked with the offence as a quality control coach. Prior to coming to Saskatchewan, he spent seven seasons as a full-time assistant coach at Lindenwood University.

In addition to head coaching duties, Dickenson will remain as the Roughriders Special Teams Coordinator. An additional announcement about the Roughriders defensive line coach will be made in the coming weeks.

(Riders PR)

Sunday, January 26, 2020

Kobe Bryant Dies In Helicopter Crash

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 NBA legend Kobe Bryant, his 13-year-old daughter and three others were killed in a helicopter crash in Southern California on Sunday, his sudden death at age 41 touching off an outpouring of grief for a star whose celebrity transcended basketball.

The chopper went down in Calabasas, about 30 miles (48 kilometers) northwest of downtown Los Angeles. Authorities confirmed that five people died, with no survivors. Bryant, an all-time basketball great who spent his entire 20-year career with the Los Angeles Lakers, was among the victims, a person familiar with the situation told The Associated Press.

A different person familiar with the case confirmed that Bryant’s 13-year-old daughter Gianna also was killed.

Word of Bryant’s sudden death at age 41 rocketed around the sports and entertainment worlds, with many taking to Twitter to register their shock, disbelief and dismay.

“There’s no words to express the pain Im going through,” tweeted Lakers teammate Shaquille O’Neal, who won three NBA titles with Bryant. “(at)kobebryant I love u and u will be missed. ... IM SICK RIGHT NOW.”

“Man I don’t even know where to start,” tweeted Philadelphia 76ers superstar Joel Embiid. “I started playing ball because of KOBE after watching the 2010 finals. I had never watched ball before that and that finals was the turning point of my life. I WANTED TO BE LIKE KOBE. I’m so FREAKING SAD right now!!!!”

Bryant retired in 2016 as the third-leading scorer in NBA history, finishing two decades with the Lakers as a prolific scorer with a sublime all-around game and a relentless competitive ethic. He held that spot in the league scoring ranks until Saturday night, when the Lakers’ LeBron James passed him for third place during a game in Philadelphia, Bryant’s hometown.

“Continuing to move the game forward (at)KingJames,” Bryant wrote in his last tweet. “Much respect my brother.”

Bryant had one of the greatest careers in recent NBA history and became one of the game’s most popular players as the face of the 16-time NBA champion Lakers franchise. He was the league MVP in 2008 and a two-time NBA scoring champion, and he earned 12 selections to the NBA’s All-Defensive teams.

He teamed with Shaquille O’Neal in a combustible partnership to lead the Lakers to NBA titles in 2000, 2001 and 2002. He later teamed with Pau Gasol to win two more titles in 2009 and 2010.

Bryant retired in 2016 after scoring 60 points in his final NBA game.

“Kobe Bryant was a giant who inspired, amazed, and thrilled people everywhere with his incomparable skill on the court — and awed us with his intellect and humility as a father, husband, creative genius, and ambassador for the game he loved. He will live forever in the heart of Los Angeles, and will be remembered through the ages as one of our greatest heroes,” said Los Angeles Mayor Eric Garcetti.

President Donald Trump reacted to the reports of Bryant’s death soon after they began to surface, tweeting: “That is terrible news!”

Colin Storm was in his living room in Calabasas when he heard “what sounded like a low-flying airplane or helicopter.”

“Ït was very foggy so we couldn’t see anything,” he said. “But then we heard some sputtering, and then a boom.”

The fog then cleared a bit and Storm could see smoke rising from the hillside in front of his home.

Juan Bonilla of Calabasas said he was working on his roof Sunday morning when he heard a helicopter flying low nearby. He said he thought it was a sheriff’s helicopter on a training mission. He heard nothing amiss with the engine or rotors and said he did not see any mechanical issue with the chopper. It was foggy Sunday morning, but he said visibility didn’t seem to be low at the time of the crash.

Firefighters worked to douse flames that spread through about an acre (.40 hectares) of dry brush, said Art Marrujo, a dispatch supervisor with the Los Angeles County Fire Department.

Federal Aviation Administration spokesman Allen Kenitzer said the downed chopper was a Sikorsky S-76.

The National Transportation Safety Board sent a “go team” of investigators to the site. The NTSB typically issues a preliminary report within about 10 days that will give a rough summary of what investigators have learned. A ruling on the cause can take a year or more.

“They will look at man, machine and environment,” said Gary C. Robb, an aviation attorney in Kansas City who wrote a textbook on helicopter-crash litigation.

“They will look at the pilot — was there any indication of fatigue, any indication of a training issue?They’ll scour his or her record,” Robb said. “They will look at this helicopter from stem to stern. They will take the engine to the NTSB metallurgical laboratory outside Washington, D.C., and examine it to see if there was something that malfunctioned in flight.”

Investigators will also consider what role might have been played by weather, terrain, radio towers or bird strikes, he said.

Robb said he has handled many cases involving Sikorsky S-76 crashes and regards the machine as having a good reputation.

“It is generally regarded as a good helicopter with a good safety record,” he said, “but parts fail, parts break. Anything can happen.”

Along with his work boosting women’s sports, Bryant opened a production company and entered the entertainment field in retirement. He won an Academy Award in 2018 for his contributions to “Dear Basketball,” an animated short about his relationship to the game. He also produced content for ESPN.

In 2003, Bryant was charged with attacking a 19-year-old employee at a Colorado resort. He had said the two had consensual sex. Prosecutors later dropped the felony sexual assault charge against Bryant at the request of the accuser.

(Associated Press)

Friday, January 24, 2020

Alouettes Hire Brendan Taman

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The man who was the general manager of the Saskatchewan Roughriders the last time they won the Grey Cup is back in the CFL.

Brendan Taman, who has not had a job since being fired by the Riders midway through the 2015 season, was hired Friday to become a senior player personnel executive with the Montreal Alouettes.

“Brendan possesses a vast knowledge of the CFL and Canadian football, on top of having many years of experience in our league. He will be a great help to our already solid football operations department,” general manager Danny Maciocia said.

“I am very happy to join the Alouettes family,” Taman said. “This team played exciting football last season and I want to help this team become even better in 2020 and for many seasons to come.“

Besides his time in Saskatchewan, Taman has also served as the general manager of the Winnipeg Blue Bombers from 2004 to 2008.  He was hired by the Riders in 2010.

This and That

---Welcome to Friday and the usual assortment of things running through my muddled mind.   As always, these come in no particular order.

--Was anyone surprised to see the Riders were heading to Atlantic Canada?  I think since we found out when the schedule was released that Saskatchewan's game in Toronto which would be played at a neutral site would go in Halifax.  Canada's Team heads to Atlantic Canada.   Riderville takes its brand to a part of the country it has never been before.  It's perfect.  They say a Maritime fanbase could be as wild as what Rider Nation is. There's nothing wrong with that.  We will see it in July.  Lobster rolls and Pilsner.  Bring it on!  I'm guessing many from here will make the trip to Halifax whether they have been there before or not.  Late July in the Maritimes is said to be very picturesque.  Add a Rider game to that and many will be making plans to head East.

--Give Nick Arbuckle and/or his agent some credit.  They know they have the Ottawa Redblacks over the proverbial barrel so they are asking for a lot.   Arbuckle has started six games and he wants a contract similar to the one Cody Fajardo has.   Arbuckle needs to do a LOT more to get into that range, but Ottawa needs a quarterback.   Arbuckle could be the next big thing or he could be the next big dud like Jonathan Jennings.  Hey wait, didn't Ottawa just release Jennings?  Remember when Rider fans lost their mind because management at the time didn't sign him to a contract when they had the chance.

--I don't understand why we need two weeks between the AFC and NFC Championships and the Super Bowl.  We know where the game is going to be played. We know who the teams are.  Lets go!!  Can you see the CFL taking two weeks off between the divisional finals and the Grey Cup.  Of course you can't. We talk about moving the schedule up or playing the Grey Cup on a Saturday.  If the CFL went two weeks between the divisional finals and the Grey Cup, the league would have a riot on its hands in some places.

--The San Francisco 49ers wanted to wear their all-white retro unis that they wore winning one of their Super Bowls in the 90's.  The NFL said no so the Niners will wear their white tops with gold pants.  There was outrage.  First world problems ladies and gentlemen.

--Why are people failing to acknowledge that the 49ers were in the Super Bowl just a few years ago when they lost to Baltimore.  Did the NFL forget about the Harbaugh Bowl?  Did they forget about the power outage at the Superdome? Did they forget about the QB battle that day between Joe Flacco and Colin Kaepernick? Oh wait!

--Speaking of the Niners, they did in 60 minutes to Green Bay what Conor McGregor did to Donald Cerrone.   Actually that's not fair because the Packers at least did something in the NFC Championship game.

--The Connor McDavid special where he talks about his knee injury suffered last year looks to be a must-watch.  That injury was serious as it turned out and is one that doctors originally thought would keep him from playing this season.  One only needs to look atop the NHL scoring race to see what a story this is.

--Tuesday was a great day for baseball in this country as Larry Walker was named to the Baseball Hall of Fame.  What might have been greater was the SpongeBob shirt he was wearing.   Walker needs to throw out the first pitch on Opening Day at Rogers Centre.  He also needs to be saluted in Montreal when the Jays finish off their pre-season at Olympic Stadium.

--Are we tired of the labour situation at the Co-Op refinery yet?

--The Winnipeg Jets are not playing good hockey right now.  They go into the all-star break having lost four in a row.  The chances of them getting into the playoffs appears to be via the wild-card as St. Louis, Colorado and Dallas with Chicago now ahead of them as well.  I heard some chatter on NHL Radio about Paul Maurice and his job security.  I don't see the Jets making any changes, but if they do its not the right move in my mind.

--Can Robyn Silvernagle make it two in a row? We will find out as the North Battleford rink is the favourite as the provincial women's curling championship gets underway.  The road to victory is tougher with 12 teams taking part in the Viterra Scotties instead of 9.  If she can make it and wear the Saskatchewan jacket to the Scotties in Moose Jaw, she will definitely deserve it as there are many good rinks taking part.  I don't know if I would bet against Michelle Englot and her rink.  We'll see!

--That's all I got.  Have a great weekend!

Thursday, January 23, 2020

This Week In Cougar Athletics

Home Events – Friday
Women's Volleyball vs. Saskatchewan, 6:00 (CKHS)
Women's Hockey vs. Manitoba, 7:00 PM (The Co-operators Centre)

Home Events – Saturday
Women's Hockey vs. Manitoba, 3:00 PM (The Co-operators Centre)
Women's Volleyball vs. Saskatchewan, 6:00 (CKHS)

Away Events – Friday
Women's Basketball - at Manitoba, 6:00 PM (Winnipeg, Man.)
Men's Hockey - at Manitoba, 7:00 PM (Winnipeg, Man.)
Men's Basketball - at Manitoba, 8:00 PM (Winnipeg, Man.)

Away Events – Saturday
Men's Hockey - at Manitoba, 2:00 PM (Winnipeg, Man.)
Women's Basketball - at Manitoba, 5:00 PM (Winnipeg, Man.)
Men's Basketball - at Manitoba, 7:00 PM (Winnipeg, Man.)

Women's Hockey – The Cougars kept rolling last weekend, collecting 2-1 and 2-0 home victories over Mount Royal to stretch their winning streak to six games. The squad has registered 17 of a possible 18 points in January, and over that time span the Cougars have vaulted all the way into fourth place in the Canada West standings. The U of R is back home at The Co-operators Centre this weekend to host Manitoba on Friday night (7:00) and Saturday afternoon (3:00).

Women's Volleyball – After a weekend off from Canada West play, the Cougars are back at it this weekend with a pair of home matches against the Saskatchewan Huskies. The teams will meet at 6:00 PM on both Friday and Saturday at the Centre for Kinesiology, Health & Sport.

Men's Hockey – The Cougars battled back from a 3-0 deficit on Friday against Mount Royal before eventually falling 4-3 in double overtime, then lost 6-1 to MRU on Saturday. With nine out of a 12 possible points so far since the December break, the Cougars have jumped back into the Canada West postseason conversation but need wins this weekend at Manitoba as they come into Friday's game three points back of UBC for the final playoff berth with six games to go. After this weekend's two road games against the Bisons, Regina closes out the conference schedule with two home games against Alberta and a home-and-home with Saskatchewan.

Men's Basketball – Coming off their bye week which followed a pair of home wins over Brandon, the Cougars (7-7) are currently ninth in the Canada West standings with just three weekends remaining in conference play. The U of R will travel east for a pair of games at Manitoba this weekend before finishing off the Canada West slate at home against UNBC and on the road at Fraser Valley.

Women's Basketball – The Cougars (6-8) enter the weekend 11th in the conference in winning percentage, but have the eighth best RPI in Canada West as they've played one of the tougher schedules to this point. The U of R will play a team similar in both record and RPI this Friday and Saturday, as they'll face Manitoba (7-7) for a pair of games in Winnipeg.

Track & Field (Women's U SPORTS Ranking: No. 6) – The Cougars had a successful outing at the Golden Bear Open over the weekend as two school records went down on the women's side and the teams combined to hit four U SPORTS standards. Joely Welburn's 3905 points in the pentathlon and the women's 4x800 team's time (9:05.02) were both school records and standards, while standards were also hit by the men's 4x800 team (7:40.30) and Amou Madol in the high jump (1.71m). The Cougars will send a small contingent to the Knights of Columbus Games this weekend in Saskatoon.

Swimming (Men's U SPORTS Ranking: No. 9) – Brian Palaschuk led a group of four Cougars competing at the TYR Pro Swim Series over the weekend in Nashville, finishing 13th overall in the 400 IM and 17th overall in the 200 IM. The rest of the Cougars competed at home at the Optimist Prairie Cup, with Brenan Alejado, Bree Crookshanks, and Firas Saidi all collecting two first-place finishes. The Cougars will return to competition on Jan. 31 and Feb. 1 at the Colleges Cup Prairies at the Lawson Aquatic Centre.

(Braden Konschuh/U of R Athletics) 

Riders and Argos To Meet in Touchdown Atlantic

The biggest Touchdown Atlantic ever is coming to Halifax this summer, the Canadian Football League (CFL) announced.

Rider Nation will invade Nova Scotia when the Saskatchewan Roughriders face the Toronto Argonauts on Saturday, July 25 in the first-ever regular season game played in Halifax.
The game will be preceded by a three-day “mini Grey Cup festival’ featuring music, parties and tons of family-friendly fun.

“Our league belongs to Canadians from coast-to-coast-to-coast – and for one fabulous weekend this July, the east coast will be its capital,” said Randy Ambrosie, Commissioner of the CFL.
“We are bringing the football and the fun. We’re inviting everyone in Atlantic Canada to join the party, and everyone in the rest of the country to come for the game and stay for a vacation!”
The CFL unveiled plans to make Halifax feel like a Grey Cup city, except it will be summer and there will be plenty of lobster rolls to go along with the beer.

Ambrosie and a host of other league personnel and local dignitaries shared their vision at a news conference.

The game will be played at Huskies Stadium on the campus of Saint Mary’s University at 5 p.m. AT on Saturday, July 25.

Approximately 6,000 temporary seats will be installed to bring the capacity for the game to 10,000.

The Toronto Argonauts, one of Canadian football’s oldest franchises, will take on the Saskatchewan Roughriders, arguably the CFL’s most popular team with a rabid following that shows up wherever the team plays.

Both teams are “leaning in” to make it a special week; they will arrive days before the game and take part in a series of media events and community visits.

The mini Grey Cup festival that precedes the game will include Riderville, the party for Riders fans that is traditionally one of the most well-attended events at the annual Grey Cup Festival and much more.

Tickets will go on-sale at the end of February and a full list of prices will be announced soon. Fans can sign up for the most up-to-date information and access to priority-purchasing at Ambrosie stressed that the game will be affordable with an average ticket price of approximately $50.
“This is our way of saying the CFL belongs in Atlantic Canada and that Atlantic Canada belongs in the CFL,” Ambrosie said.

The Atlantic Schooners group has been working with the league to bring a CFL franchise to Atlantic Canada and has presented Halifax City Council with a plan to build a new CFL-ready stadium in the city.

“We’re committed to this vision and excited about it,” said Bruce Bowser, a founder and owner of Schooners Sport and Entertainment.

“This is further evidence that the CFL shares that passion and is dedicated to this region.”

The 2020 edition of Touchdown Atlantic will be the first CFL game of any type to be played in Nova Scotia since 2005, when the Argos and Hamilton Tiger-Cats played a pre-season game at Huskies Stadium. Moncton hosted Touchdown Atlantic games in 2010, 2011, 2013 and 2019.

“Our friends and fans in Moncton have been wonderful hosts over the years and we’re just as excited to be coming to Halifax,” Ambrosie said. “For us, this has always been about embracing the region and every fan in it.”

Fans should book accommodation early because Halifax is an especially popular destination in the summer months, said Ross Jefferson, President and Chief Executive Officer of Discover Halifax.
“We’re working with the CFL to ensure Touchdown Atlantic feels a lot like Grey Cup Week,” he said.

CFL legend Michael “Pinball” Clemons, the General Manager of the Argonauts, vowed the Double Blue will meet a green wave of Rider fans head on.

“This is a home game for us and we invite fans in Atlantic Canada and our fans from Toronto to join us,” Clemons said. “We love Rider fans, but we love our own fans even more. This is an important year for us and this will be a big game.”

Craig Reynolds, President and Chief Executive Officer of the Riders, said he expects a big turnout in Halifax.

“There is no doubt that our fans are passionate about our team, but they are just as passionate about the CFL and the way football can bring our country together,” he said. “No matter where we are, our fans are there to greet us, and we think the allure of the Green and White alongside the beauty of Halifax in summer will be an irresistible combination.”

Riders’ kicker and Saint Mary’s alumnus, Brett Lauther, called Touchdown Atlantic a dream come true.

“I’ve known the thrill of kicking the winning points on our home field in Regina, but to do that here, in my own backyard, would be just incredible,” said Lauther, a native of Truro, N.S.

Saint Mary’s University is honoured to be a part of CFL history, said Robert Summerby-Murray, the school’s President.

“We’re thrilled to host Touchdown Atlantic. Great events, like great universities, make our region and our country stronger.”


Wednesday, January 22, 2020

Riders Make Leonard Signing Official

Image result for ac leonard

The Saskatchewan Roughriders have signed American defensive lineman A.C. Leonard to a two-year contract extension keeping him with the Club through 2021.             

Leonard (6’2 – 250) is entering his sixth CFL season and his fourth with the Riders. The 28-year old re-joined the Riders for the 2019 season after spending 2018 with the Ottawa Redblacks. This past season, he played in in 17 games collecting 44 defensive tackles, nine quarterback sacks, three forced fumbles and 10 tackles for loss.

 Leonard entered the CFL in 2015 with the B.C. Lions as a receiver after spending the 2014 season with the Minnesota Vikings.  He signed with the Riders in 2016 as a free agent where he remained until he signed with the Redblacks. In 73 career games, Leonard has made 160 defensive tackles, 25 sacks and four forced fumbles. The 28-year-old was named an East Division All-Star in 2018.

 The Florida native played two seasons at Tennessee State, also as a receiver, registering 1,174 yards and 11 touchdowns on 85 receptions.

Gritty Is Accused Of Punching a 13-Year-Old

Image result for gritty

Police in Philadelphia are investigating a complaint that Gritty, the Flyers' mascot, punched a 13-year-old following a photo shoot at a November event for season-ticket holders, according to a Philadelphia Inquirer report.

Chris Greenwell told the Inquirer that his son, Brandon, playfully patted Gritty on the head after the photo was taken and then walked away. Greenwell said Gritty left his chair, "took a running start" and "punched my son as hard as he could."

A police spokesperson described the incident as an alleged "physical assault" during a photo shoot, adding that the investigation is "active and ongoing," according to the Inquirer.

The Flyers have denied any wrongdoing by their mascot. "We took Mr. Greenwell's allegations seriously and conducted a thorough investigation that found nothing to support this claim," the Flyers said in a statement.

Greenwell provided the Inquirer with documents from a chiropractor saying Brandon was diagnosed with a back bruise.

Greenwall said he reached out to the team in the wake of the alleged incident to request an apology and ask that the team do something special for his son. In an email Greenwall shared with the Inquirer, a Comcast Spectacor official told Greenwall it found no proof that Gritty hit his son, though the official offered to make up for the "bad experience."

After a disagreement over what was said in a follow-up phone call, Greenwall, who said he hasn't hired a lawyer, filed a complaint with police on Dec. 21.

The Flyers unveiled the orange mascot with bulbous eyes to mixed reviews in 2018, but Gritty quickly became a fan favorite and was described as "the toast of the sports world" by ESPN hockey analyst Barry Melrose.

Tuesday, January 21, 2020

Dunk: Riders Re-Sign AC Leonard

Image result for ac leonard

Some late night news from 3DownNation's Justin Dunk.

He is reporting the Riders have signed defensive lineman AC Leonard to a new deal meaning he will avoid free agency.

Dunk''s story can be seen here

Monday, January 20, 2020

NHL Three Stars Of Week

Stars of Week 012020

NEW YORK (Jan. 20, 2020) – Washington Capitals left wing Alex Ovechkin, Columbus Blue Jackets goaltender Elvis Merzlikins and Chicago Blackhawks center Jonathan Toews have been named the NHL’s “Three Stars” for the week ending Jan. 19.


Ovechkin led all skaters in goals and tied for second in points with 8-0—8 in three games, including three multi-goal performances highlighted by back-to-back hat tricks for the third time in his career, to propel the League-leading Capitals (33-11-5, 71 points) to a perfect 3-0-0 week. He opened the week with a pair of goals in a 2-0 victory over the Carolina Hurricanes Jan. 13 to bump his career goal total to 686 and surpass Teemu Selanne into 11th place on the NHL’s all-time list. Ovechkin then rattled off back-to-back hat tricks in a 5-2 win over the New Jersey Devils Jan. 16 and a 6-4 triumph over the New York Islanders Jan. 18 – marking the first time in his career he has scored multiple goals in three straight outings. In addition to Selanne, the 34-year-old native of Moscow, Russia, also passed Mario Lemieux (690) and moved into a tie with Steve Yzerman (692) for ninth on the all-time goals list while moving within eight markers of becoming the eighth member of the NHL’s 700-goal club.


Merzlikins recorded a perfect 3-0-0 record in three appearances with a 0.67 goals-against average, .982 save percentage and two shutouts as the Blue Jackets (26-16-8, 60 points) won four games to move into the first Wild Card position in the Eastern Conference. He began the week with a 34-save shutout in a 3-0 win over the Boston Bruins Jan. 14 after also blanking the Vegas Golden Knights in his previous start Jan. 11. In doing so, he became the second rookie in franchise history to record a shutout in consecutive appearances, joining Steve Mason (Dec. 27-31, 2008; 3 GP). He then made 32 saves in a 3-2 victory over the Carolina Hurricanes Jan. 16 and concluded the week with yet another shutout in which he turned aside 41 shots in a 5-0 triumph over the New Jersey Devils Jan. 18 to become just the seventh rookie goaltender in the NHL’s modern era (since 1943-44) to post three shutouts in the span of four starts. Merzlikins, a 25-year-old native of Riga, Latvia, has made 20 appearances with Columbus this season with an 8-6-4 record (2.36 GAA, .928 SV%, 3 SO).


Toews led all skaters with 3-6—9 in four games last week to help the Blackhawks (24-20-6, 54 points) win all four contests and move within three points of the final Wild card position in the Western Conference. Toews opened the week with 1-2—3, including his 15th career overtime winner, in a 3-2 victory over the Ottawa Senators Jan. 14 and followed it up with an assist in a 4-1 win over the Montreal Canadiens Jan. 15. He closed the week with 2-2—4 in a 6-2 victory over the Toronto Maple Leafs Jan. 18 and added an assist in a 5-2 win over the Winnipeg Jets Jan. 19. Toews, a 31-year-old native of Winnipeg, Man., ranks second on the Blackhawks with 14-30—44 in 50 games this season and is currently riding a six-game point streak dating to Jan. 9 (4-9—13 in 6 GP). He boosted his career totals to 341-458—799 in 923 games and now sits one point shy of becoming the sixth player in Blackhawks history to record 800 points with the franchise.

Saturday, January 18, 2020

Grey Cup Saved In Fire

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The Grey Cup was inside the Clarion Lakeside Inn in Kenora, Ontario when a fire broke out Friday afternoon, but was saved thanks to the quick actions of Winnipeg Blue Bombers fullback John Rush and the team travelling with the CFL’s top prize.
When the blaze broke out around 4:30 pm, Rush and the staff were in the hotel’s lounge. They quickly ran to the room where the Cup was being stored and retrieved it, then ran back down the stairs and outside to safety.
The truck that the Bombers entourage had traveled to Kenora in, along with a trailer full of Blue Bombers swag, wasn’t so lucky as it was parked next to one of the vehicles that was on fire. The trailer full of merchandise was lost, which means that there will be none for them to hand out today.
The Grey Cup is safe and will be on display as planned in Kenora today.

(Country 105/Thunder Bay) 

NFL Conference Championship Notes

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NEW FACES ON CHAMPIONSHIP WEEKENDThe NFL will have a new Super Bowl Champion for a 15th consecutive season as four teams vie to secure their place in Super Bowl LIV. In the AFC Championship Game, presented by Intuit TurboTax, the TENNESSEE TITANS (11-7) take on the KANSAS CITY CHIEFS (13-4), while the GREEN BAY PACKERS (14-3) travel to Levi’s Stadium to take on the SAN FRANCISCO 49ERS (14-3) in the NFC Championship Game, presented by Intuit TurboTax.
Of the teams appearing on Championship Sunday, three teams – Green Bay, San Francisco and Tennessee – missed the postseason in 2018, marking the sixth time that at least three teams have advanced to the Championship games after failing to make the postseason the previous year since the NFL instituted the 12-team playoff format in 1990 and the second time in the past three seasons.

ON THE ROAD AGAINWith a 28-12 victory over the No. 1 seed Baltimore Ravens in the AFC Divisional Playoffs, the TENNESSEE TITANS (11-7) became the sixth No. 6 seed to advance to a Conference Championship since the NFL instituted the current 12-team playoff format in 1990 and first since the GREEN BAY PACKERS and NEW YORK JETS in 2010.
With a win over the Kansas City Chiefs on Sunday (3:05 PM ET, CBS), Tennessee would join the 2010 GREEN BAY PACKERS and the 2005 PITTSBURGH STEELERS as the only No. 6 seeds to appear in the Super Bowl since 1990 when the NFL instituted the current 12-team playoff format. Both the Packers and Steelers would go on to win the Super Bowl in those seasons.
The No. 6 seeds to reach the Super Bowl since the NFL instituted the current 12-team playoff format in 1990:
Green Bay
Won Super Bowl XLV
Won Super Bowl XL


Additionally, Tennessee could also join the 2010 Green Bay Packers and 2005 Pittsburgh Steelers as the only teams to defeat each of the top three seeds in their conference in a single postseason since 1990.

KING HENRY CONTINUES HIS REIGN: Tennessee running back DERRICK HENRY rushed for a postseason franchise-record 195 yards in the Titans’ Divisional Playoff win last week. After rushing for 182 yards and a touchdown on Wild Card Weekend against New England, Henry became the first player with at least 180 rushing yards in consecutive postseason games in NFL history.  
With at least 150 rushing yards on Sunday, Henry would join Pro Football Hall of Famer TERRELL DAVIS (1998-99) as the only players with at least 150 rushing yards in three consecutive postseason games in NFL history.
With at least 123 rushing yards on Sunday against Kansas City (3:05 PM ET, CBS), Henry would join Pro Football Hall of Famers JOHN RIGGINS (610 rushing yards in 1982) and TERRELL DAVIS (581 in 1997) as the only players with at least 500 rushing yards in a single postseason in NFL history.  
The players with the most rushing yards in a single postseason in NFL history:
John RigginsHOF
Terrell DavisHOF
Terrell DavisHOF
Marcus AllenHOF
LA Raiders
Eddie George

Derrick Henry
*Entering Sunday

Henry has 561 rushing yards in four career postseason games. With at least 112 rushing yards on Sunday, he would surpass Pro Football Hall of Famer TERRELL DAVIS (672 yards) for the most rushing yards through a player’s first five career postseason games in NFL history.
Henry led the NFL with 1,540 rushing yards in the regular season in 2019. With a win on Sunday, Henry would join Pro Football Hall of Famers TERRELL DAVIS (1998) and EMMITT SMITH (1992-93, 1995), as well as SHAUN ALEXANDER (2005) as the only single-season rushing leaders to reach the Super Bowl in the same season.
The single-season rushing leaders to reach the Super Bowl in the same season:

Shaun Alexander
Terrell DavisHOF
Emmitt SmithHOF
Emmitt SmithHOF
Emmitt SmithHOF

AFC GOES THROUGH CHIEFS KINGDOMThe KANSAS CITY CHIEFS advanced to their second consecutive AFC Championship Game for the first time in franchise history with a 51-31 win over Houston in the Divisional Playoffs. In the victory, Kansas City became the first team to win a game by at least 20 points after trailing by at least 20 points in the same game in NFL history.

Kansas City’s comeback in the Divisional Playoffs marked the second comeback of at least 16 points in the postseason this year after the HOUSTON TEXANS erased a 16-point deficit in an overtime win over Buffalo on Wild Card Weekend. This marks the second time in which there have been two comebacks of at least 16 points in a single postseason in NFL history (2002).

Kansas City quarterback PATRICK MAHOMES led the comeback with 321 passing yards and five touchdowns without an interception for a 134.6 passer rating and added 53 yards on the ground, becoming the first player with at least 300 passing yards, five touchdown passes, and 50 rushing yards in a single postseason game in NFL history.

If Mahomes, who has eight touchdown passes in three career postseason games, has at least three touchdown passes on Sunday against Tennessee (3:05 PM ET, CBS), he would tie Pro Football Hall of Famer KURT WARNER (11) for the most touchdown passes through a player’s first four career postseason games in NFL history.

The quarterbacks with the most touchdown passes in their first four postseason games in NFL history:


Kurt WarnerHOF
St. Louis Rams

Dan MarinoHOF

Aaron Rodgers
Green Bay

Alex Smith
San Francisco, Kansas City

Patrick Mahomes
Kansas City

*In three games
Additionally, with at least four touchdown passes, Mahomes would become the first player with at least four touchdown passes in consecutive postseason games in NFL history.

Chiefs tight end TRAVIS KELCE recorded postseason career-highs in receptions (10), receiving yards (134) and receiving touchdowns (three) last week, becoming the third tight end with at least three touchdown receptions in a single postseason game in the Super Bowl era.

If Kelce, who has three career postseason games with at least 100 receiving yards, has at least 100 receiving yards against Tennessee (3:05 PM ET, CBS), he would tie for the most such career postseason games by a tight end in NFL history.

The tight ends with the most career postseason games with at least 100 receiving yards in NFL history:

Vernon Davis
San Francisco
Rob Gronkowski
New England
Keith Jackson
Philadelphia, Miami, Green Bay
Dallas Clark
Travis Kelce
Kansas City
Greg Olsen
Chicago, Carolina
*Entering Sunday

HUNTING MORE TITLES IN TITLETOWN: The GREEN BAY PACKERS advanced to their first Conference Championship since 2016 with a 28-23 victory over Seattle in the Divisional Playoffs. With the victory, Green Bay tied the DALLAS COWBOYS (35 wins) for the third-most postseason victories in NFL history.
With a win against the 49ers, who rank fifth on the all-time list with 31 postseason wins, on Sunday (6:40 PM ET, FOX), the Packers would tie the PITTSBURGH STEELERS (36 wins) for the second-most postseason victories in NFL history.
The teams with the most postseason wins in NFL history:

New England
Green Bay
San Francisco

Green Bay head coach MATT LAFLEUR became the first head coach to reach a Conference Championship in his first season since JIM HARBAUGH led San Francisco to the NFC Championship Game in 2011.
With a win on Sunday, LaFleur would become the sixth rookie head coach to appear in the Super Bowl.
The rookie head coaches to appear in the Super Bowl:

Don McCafferty
Baltimore Colts
W 16-13, Super Bowl V
Red Miller
L 27-10, Super Bowl XII
George Seifert
San Francisco
W 55-10, Super Bowl XXIV
Bill Callahan
L 48-21, Super Bowl XXXVII
Jim Caldwell
L 31-17, Super Bowl XLIV

Matt LaFleur
Green Bay

With LaFleur (40 years, 66 days old) and San Francisco head coach KYLE SHANAHAN (40 years, 36 days old), Sunday’s NFC Championship Game will be the first Conference Championship Game featuring two head coaches under the age of 41 since 1970.

Green Bay quarterback AARON RODGERS passed for 243 yards and two touchdowns without an interception for a 113.7 passer rating last week, marking Rodgers’ sixth consecutive postseason game with at least two touchdown passes.
With at least two touchdown passes on Sunday, Rodgers would tie Pro Football Hall of Famers TERRY BRADSHAW (seven games) and JOE MONTANA (seven), as well as DREW BREES (seven), for the second-longest streak of postseason games with at least two touchdown passes in NFL history. Only JOE FLACCO (eight games) had a longer such streak in league history.

Additionally, with two touchdown passes, Rodgers would tie PEYTON MANNING (40) for the fourth-most career postseason touchdown passes in NFL history.

The players with the most career postseason touchdown passes in NFL history:

Tom Brady
New England
Joe MontanaHOF
San Francisco, Kansas City
Brett FavreHOF
Green Bay, Minnesota
Peyton Manning
Indianapolis, Denver
Aaron Rodgers
Green Bay
*Entering Sunday

Rodgers, who has 4,700 passing yards in 17 career postseason starts, needs at least 300 passing yards on Sunday to become the sixth player with at least 5,000 career postseason passing yards in NFL history, joining TOM BRADY (11,388), PEYTON MANNING (7,339), Pro Football Hall of Famers BRETT FAVRE (5,855) and JOE MONTANA (5,772), and BEN ROETHLISBERGER (5,256).

NEW GOLDEN ERA: With a 27-10 win over Minnesota in the Divisional Playoffs, the SAN FRANCISCO 49ERS became the fifth team since 1990 to advance to a Championship Game after winning four-or-fewer games the previous season, and the second team in three years, joining the JACKSONVILLE JAGUARS in 2017.

With a victory on Sunday against Green Bay (6:40 PM ET, FOX), San Francisco head coach KYLE SHANAHAN, whose father – MIKE SHANAHAN – won Super Bowl XXXII and XXXIII as head coach of the DENVER BRONCOS, would become the first father-son duo to each appear in a Super Bowl as a head coach in NFL history.
In their Divisional Playoff victory, the 49ers defense tallied six team sacks, tied for the second-most in a single postseason game in franchise history.

With at least six sacks on Sunday against Green Bay, the 2019 San Francisco 49ers would join the 1984 SAN FRANCISCO 49ERS as the only teams with at least six sacks in two consecutive postseason games in the Super Bowl era.

49ers rookie defensive lineman NICK BOSA recorded two sacks in his postseason debut last week. With at least two sacks on Sunday, Bosa would join LAMARR WOODLEY as the only players with at least two sacks in each of their first two postseason games since 1982, when the individual sack became an official statistic. Bosa would also become the first rookie to accomplish the feat since 1982.