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Wednesday, June 10, 2015

DAY 10 TRAINING CAMP PHOTOBLOG AND NOTEBOOK


Day 10 of 2015 Saskatchewan Roughriders training camp in Saskatoon was just like all the rest -- perfect temperatures, sunshine and not a drop of rain.  Here's some photo evidence of what the Roughriders were up to on Tuesday...


Veteran slotback Chris Getzlaf has sort of flown "under the radar" as far as the media spotlight goes so far this year, which is just the way he likes it.  However I wanted to get some shots of the Regina product for a story I'm writing on him...




6-year veteran kicker Chris Milo thought I was trying to get some photos of him...


Defensive line coach Mike Sinclair is one of the most thorough position coaches you will ever run into.  Here John Chick listens intently to what Sinclair has to say...


Face in the Crowd: Regina Thunder head coach Scott MacAuley...


Defensive back Macho Harris.  I told him he looks like Michael Jackson.  He replied, "I prefer to look like Prince!"


Moments later he got his locks under control while still finding time to survey the crowd at Griffiths Stadium...


Under the Helmet: Paul Woldu and Shea Emry...


Rookie draftee Rory Connop.  You're welcome Coors Light for the background shot...


As soon as the Riders finished their workout around 5:00 pm, the U of S Huskies track team took over the field...


And not long after, an injury occurred.


More evidence of the track athletes which Luc Mullinder and I discuss on a regular basis on CKRM's SportsCage...

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DAY 10 NOTEBOOK

1 - GAME PLANS: The Roughriders are starting to put plans together for their roster for Saturday's preseason game against the Edmonton Eskimos in Fort McMurray (8:00 pm, TSN, CKRM Rider Radio Network).  Generally in the preseason opener, even if it's on the road, the team will dress as many players as possible or as many will fit on the plane.  Head coach Corey Chamblin didn't give a specific number on Tuesday, but I'm guessing there will be 60-some players in uniform.

2 - CHAMBLIN VS JONES:  We'll know by Thursday who will make the trip and the coaches will have set out the rotation for when the players will appear by quarter.  Chamblin said their veterans will start, but won't play for long.  In years past, the head coaches used to confer well in advance of the game about the type of roster they'll field.  However it seems in recent years they've gotten away from that.

"I know (Eskimo head coach) Chris Jones," Chamblin stated.  "Chris is gonna try to win the game in terms of sometimes he may even play his guys more like three quarters.  That's Chris.  He does things a little bit different than I do.  We want to win the game but there will be an evaluation process that takes place.  We'll see what we need to see from our 1's and go from there."

3 - MOVING UP THE DEPTH CHART:  Chamblin provided a glimpse into what's going on behind-the-scenes in terms of who's ahead of whom at each position.  The coaching staff has started to formulate some decisions on players' abilities based on 10 days of training camp, but the serious conclusions will start to be made come Saturday night.

"Like I told you guys on Day 1 when we talked about it, the game's gonna tell a lot," Chamblin offered.  "I've even started to look at making the first regular season game roster.  Like when the coaches give it to me, I'm like 'Yep, but I still want to see how they perform in this game'.  There's a couple guys that we think are on the bubble and there's a couple guys that's raised their game in the past two days and moved up.  They have an opportunity in these preseason games to make the team whether it's start or whatever it may be."

4 - DID HE SAY 'ON THE BUBBLE'?:  That's the question most-asked by listeners to the SportsCage: "Which veterans are on the bubble?"  The Urban Dictionary describes that phrase as -- "At risk. In peril.  Most often used to describe someone or something that may be cut from scope or removed from the group".  

In truth, we all know there are certain players on the bubble because there are every year.  However you'd have better luck pulling teeth from the Rider Football Operations staffs' mouth than actually getting them to identify who those players are.  And it's far too dangerous for us to speculate (or guess) who those players are.  I know these are anxious times and people want the information now, but you'll find out over the course of the next two weeks.  Honestly I couldn't even guess to whom Chamblin is referring.

5 - JOB INTERVIEWS:  A high-ranking club official attended a practice on Wednesday and asked me how many jobs are actually open on this year's team.  Off the top of my head, you can likely count these:  Centre, Right Tackle, Starting 5 Receiver (if Jamel Richardson isn't 100%), Fullback, possibly Nose Tackle (if they elect to start a Canadian), two Outside Linebacker spots and Punter.  That makes eight, and that's a lot.  And that's just starters.  There are back-up positions available as well, for instance the hole created by receiver Chaz Schilens' retirement.  This has made for plenty of wide-open competition, and has made this training camp all the more interesting to observe.

6 - THE DARKHORSE:  Another training camp observer asked me who my "darkhorse" is, and again we'll defer to the Urban Dictionary for a definition:  "A candidate or competitor about whom little is known but who unexpectedly wins or succeeds".

This would also fall under the category of the popular question of:  "Which rookie players have stood out?"  This is a tricky one but if you put a gun to my head and asked for ONE darkhorse, it would have to be kicker Ray Early (Furman) who picked up in Week 2 where he left off after Week 1.  His punts are towering and long, averaging around 60 yards.  He looks pretty sturdy on field goals too.  As far as other impressive rookies go, I'd have to say receivers Naaman Roosevelt and Devin Wilson, linebackers Telvion Clark and Jeff Clark, and defensive backs Jeremy Gray, Marrio Norman and Junior Mertile.  Veteran Canadian Paul Woldu has been patrolling the boundary corner with the second team defense and has looked first rate as well.  Chamblin's correct in saying they've ended up with plenty of options for Canadian starters.

7 - "GENERAL SORENESS":  It's one of the latest buzzwords in pro sports.  Several players have been given days off in all leagues with teams are now calling "general soreness".  Don't we all suffer from that?  But seriously, the grind these players' bodies are going through is tortorous and I'm told not to read too much into the injury reports or get concerned when a veteran gets some reps off with the first team.  The coaches continue to closely monitor the players' status and give maintenance days accordingly.

However Chamblin said because of the various bumps, bruises and strains, they're looking to bring some more players in.

8 - HAVING SAID THAT...:  Safety Tyron Brackenridge is coming off an All-Star season but hasn't seen the field since the early days of camp.  His injury hasn't been disclosed but Chamblin said if "T-Brack" isn't able to practice come Monday, then his status for Week 1 will be in question.  The exact same goes for veteran long-snapper and defensive end Levi Steinhauer who hasn't participated in any of training camp however he's been on the sidelines each day.

9 - BIG TURK:  I may have errored when I listed DE Ryan Wellman and OT Levy Adcock as the tallest players in training camp at 6'6".  Saskatoon Hilltops receiver Evan Turkington stands a towering 6'7" and weighs in around 230 lbs.  Although he's extremely green, the coaches and scouts are salivating over his raw potential.  He's swimming in this playbook, but they feel his future has no ceiling in sight.  Having said that, none of the junior players will play in the preseason.

10 - TSN GETTING HAMMERED:  CFL fans are raging over the fact so few preseason games will be shown on TSN or its auxillary channels.  I'm told only three will be shown and viewers have let TSN have it over social media.  It's almost as if Canada's Sports Leader feels once they stroked that huge cheque for the TV rights, they can do whatever they want with the property.  The Tiger-Cats took matters into their own hands by live-streaming Monday's 37-10 preseason win over Ottawa and despite some mild hiccups, the webcast was magnficient.  TSN.ca tried to do the same with Tuesday's Winnipeg-Toronto game but I'm told it wasn't a quality broadcast.  Luc Mullinder and I were unable to log into TSN.ca on any of my Access, SaskTel or Rogers accounts.  (I mean, who has their Access customer # in their back pocket anyway?  Mine is sitting on my latest invoice at my home office in Regina).  Given the importance the CFL has within TSN programming, you'd think they could find one way to broadcast exhibition games on one of their five channels they've boasted about so much.  Assuredly they have their reasons, but none have been explained.

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THAT'S ALL FOR DAY 10! HAVE A GREAT DAY...
RP
@sportscage
Instagram: ridervoice

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The following is the Day 10 report from the 2015 Roughrider Training Camp courtesy Riders PR.

ROSTER MOVES

INJURED/DID NOT PARTICIPATE:                                
International DL Alex Hall (day-to-day)
International DB Macho Harris (day-to-day)
International WR Weston Dressler (day-to-day)
National WR Scott McHenry (day-to-day)
International DB Antareis Bryan (week-to-week)
National RB Jerome Messam (day-to-day)
International RB Terrance Cobb (day-to-day)
International S Tyron Brackenridge (day-to-day)
National OL Brendon LaBatte (day-to-day)
National DL Levi Steinhauer (week-to-week)
National DL Tim Agbaje (day-to-day)
International DL Cameron Sheffield (day-today)
                     
OVERVIEW
The Riders altered their morning schedule moving the hour long walk through up to 8:30am in order to use the Griffiths Stadium field before the second day of the elementary track meet began.    

That afternoon temperature soared again into the high 20’s for the second on field set of the day. The one hour and forty-five minute session was a mix of live team situations and walk through installation.

PLAY OF THE DAY
During the afternoon skelly period, veteran receiver and Regina native Chris Getzlaf split coverage in the seam to make a solid catch for the would be touchdown from quarterback Darian Durant.

QUOTE OF THE DAY
“Of course it is fun, like I said all last week, we are all grown men playing a little kids game. It's just at a higher level now. It's coming along and whenever you are doing and you’re playing with your friends, it makes it that much better.” Darian Durant on the positives in training camp.

WEDNESDAY
Players and coaches will hit the field for Day 11 of training camp with two practices. The morning session will begin at 8:30 am at SMF Field at Gordie Howe Park. The team will return to Griffiths Stadium for the afternoon practice from 3:00-4:45pm.

FAN ACCESS
Receivers will walk the fence on the west side of the stadium following tomorrow’s afternoon practice to make up the autograph session that was cancelled last week due to the thunderstorm.

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A NOTE FROM JDRF:

June 14 Regina Juvenile Diabetes Walk
Register at www.jdrf.ca/walk
Registration begins at 9:00 with the Walk starting at 10:30 am
Queen Building at Wascana Lake

Please come out and support 93,000 Saskatchewan residents impacted by Diabetes.  For every $1.00 raised for JDRF over 80 cents goes directly to Research.  One of the highest rankings of health charities in Canada.

John Chick, Rob Bagg and Ballsy – 2015 JDRF Honorary Ambassadors.

29 comments:

Anonymous said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
Anonymous said...

prayers to that injured woman

Anonymous said...

It is CFL exhibition! WHO CARES?!

You yokels can sit and watch a bunch of nobodies play Saturday night, but I will be watching a real game called the Stanley Cup Final. When the TV ratings come out, you will see the numbers simply aren't there for CFL pre-season football because NOBODY CARES!

More people will watch womens soccer than CFL exhibition because NOBODY CARES!!!

Anonymous said...

Well Rod since you say no one has explained why TSN doesn't show exhibitions allow me to be the first. The preseason means nothing to the public, the players they know are going to play maybe 1 quarter at half speed trying not to get hurt. Then a bunch of guys named who play 3 quarters of sloppy football because no one knows the play book. Neither team really cares about winning and even if your team wins you can't draw any conclusions. Preseason games are key for coaches and GM's but are useless for the general public. Now you know...

Rod Pedersen said...

Wrong, wrong, wrong. A couple years back a Roughrider preseason game on TSN had higher ratings than an NBA Finals game.

Why is every Blue Jays exhibition game shown? And several in the NHL preseason? And every NFL preseason is broadcast either locally, regionally or nationally.

Sorry, but you couldn't be more wrong in your comments.

RP

Anonymous said...

I think it was a big mistake for the league to extend the TSN monopoly deal. Not because of broadcast quality as TSN is good at that, but because of the need to have the game on as many media platforms as possible and, in this situation, accountability. TSN is accountable to nothing. Look at when CBC tried messing around in the 2000's, the CFL pulled the pin and gave TSN full rights. That should have been a lesson to broadcasters everywhere, never get complacent or take the game for granted.


Dubya

Anonymous said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
Anonymous said...

Ypu're wrong Roddy, nobody I know cares about CFL pre-season, it just aint that attractive.

Anonymous said...

TSN's 5 channels are a big waste. When they were first announced I thought it would be great. But now all you typically get are 4 channels showing all the same programming & the other 1 showing something different. Oh, wait! Apparently we will get to watch multiple tennis matches from Wimbledon at the same time. Yawn!!

C in the 780

Anonymous said...

I want to watch the CFL pre-season cause the NHL lost me a while back. That just drags on way too long. So many people I know have the same opinion. At the hockey rink monday and only two dads out of the 20 either watching the game or listening.

John Waynes Drunken Palomino

From the 204

Anonymous said...

Yep. The other night they had the NBA finals on 3 channels. I turned on the TV to watch the CFL. It wasn't on, so unturned it off.

Same goes for the NHL finals. It isn't my team so I checked out. Plus we have been watching NHL hockey for 10 months already. Can't wait for Saturday night. Gonna put the TV on the deck at the cabin. Boys are coming out for a round of golf before hand. Turn up Rod and Carm on the radio. Can't wait for kickoff.

Anonymous said...

the radio is like 2 seconds ahead of the tv broadcast ive tried doing it, doesnt work

Clarkenstein said...

To the person who says televising preseason games are useless.
Sir or Madam: This is obviously your opinion and likely the opinion of a few others but please don't assume you speak for me, and in this case Ridernation, when you say the "public" doesn't care. The CFL continues to make a huge mistake in giving rights to only one network. This is only one obvious example.

Anonymous said...

Rod, Rod, Rod:

Every Jays exhibition game is not shown on Sportsnet! Are you also comparing MLB, NHL and NFL to the CFL. Cmon, are your hairplugs in too tight?

The first exhibition game of the year is a joke and when TSN has more high property items like the NBA Final and the Womens World Cup to deal with, the CFL will be an after thought.

As for the guy who is going to the cabin turning on his TV and then listening to the radio. WHy don't you just leave one or the other off or here's an idea, enjoy the great outdoors.


Anonymous said...

I can't wait to listen to Carm groan.

Anonymous said...

Sure it does. Three letters for Ya...PVR.

Play. Pause. Rewind

Anonymous said...

lol womens world cup was such a high priority that NO other country in the world bothered to bid on it.

Anonymous said...

Why don't I leave the TV off you say. Here is my day, tell me if seems like I am enjoying the outdoors

Boys show up at 1.
Tee off at 2.
Fire up the BBQ at 5.
Steak supper at 6.
Bring the TV out to the deck at 7.
Football game at 8.
Campfire going probably about 10.

Does that sound like enjoying the outdoors enough!

Anonymous said...

TSN, right in the middle of football season, and right after a CFL double header (for example), would prefer to announce that Joe Shmowe of any NHL team anywhere, signed a contract extension that would go instead of 1 year, but for 2 years (So exciting I just turned the channel). Wow did you hear that a defenceman from Tampa Bay just signed a contract, so glad they pre-empted the CFL coverage!!!???

And while the rest of the Canadian Football League fans, or football fans in general, wait to watch or hear about football, TSN continues to broadcast hockey (all summer long), as if it is a precious baby. News flash TSN, hockey is not your baby, you lost the right to it.

Secondly, there are a high percentage of sports fans in Canada that are football fans; stop treating us, and the CFL League, as a pee-on whereby you can use or abuse at your own free will.

There's a reason that viewers are tuning out of TV Sports News broadcasts; not wanting to wait for those jokers to get there act together is one of them. Internet sports, news, blog-sites is where it is at... Just ask Mr Rod P.

Thanks for coming out TSN... Thanks for nothing!

Kel in Victoria

Anonymous said...

To the people writing in and saying "nobody cares about CFL exhibition", that's news to the rest of us. In fact, after hearing that, I am surprised that they even have exhibition games open to the public, by the rationale, no person would be sitting in the stands. I am confused, they sell tickets, people buy the tickets, they arrive watch and cheer, yet some social sports scientists who are writing in to this blog claim that no person is interested to watch CFL exhibition games? What gives? Why are there people showing up at the games? How can this be!

As far as the preseason in general actually meaning something to the public, hmmm let's see, down in Alabama at the annual scrimmage game they place almost 90,000 people into their stadium. Yup, not quite a sell out (down there) in comparison to their regular season games, maybe that has to do with the fact that it is pre-season... But really, can anyone be serious about the claim that on one likes pre-season football, let's get real.

For the haters out there, stay at home, shut your mouths, and try to grab a hold of reality. Obviously we will not see you at the Riders home exhibition game, that's your prerogative. How about minding your own business and shut the H*ll up!

Kel in Victoria

Anonymous said...

Lots of people want to watch it. I havent got to watch football since feb. I dont care what kond of football it is. To me and a lot of other people football is exciting no matter what. Plus it is nice to see some of the new talent on the field.

Bob

Anonymous said...

Kel nails the hammer on the head. TSN might brag that they are the exclusive CFL broadcaster but make no mistake about it; they suffer the same delusion as Rogers in that the NHL and NFL hype machines are the sexiest entertainment out there and need to be covered as extensively as possible. When NFL training camps are on you'll see wall to wall coverage on both networks. CFL has barely had a snif. It's absolutely pathetic. Rod talked about the NFL mowing the CFL's lawn, well our two supposed pro-Canadian networks aren't helping the situation either.


Gundersons Yorkton

Anonymous said...

Just another example of how the trials and tribulations of some guys in green running around turning the lives of everyone upside down. What's funny is 80 percent of the players playing won't be around in two weeks and the win or loss doesn't matter.

When the regular season starts, I will be there so Kel in Victoria and all you other wahoos can shut the hell up and take your bitching and moaning elsewhere.


GET A LIFE PEOPLE!!!! #pathetic

Anonymous said...

Actually not anywhere near 80%. More like 30%. Do they math moron

Anonymous said...

Two words that sum up the CFL and its associated woes, "MINOR LEAGUE".

Anonymous said...

Boy oh boy. Quite the blog response today Roddy!


Fake Carm Carteri

Anonymous said...

Now that Troy Palamaro is retired from football, perhaps there is a Shampoo company that will work up a commercial starring Macho Harris.

Anonymous said...

You forgot to groan.

Anonymous said...

I will be watching any CFL game that I can preseason or not and especially the Riders. Off-season has been too long. No need for it to go on any longer. Thought I was somebody but guess I am nobody. Oh Darn!!!! OH YES....GO RIDERS GO! Can't wait for Saturday night football.