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Thursday, October 1, 2015

THURSDAY RODSERVATIONS

RAPID FIRE THURSDAY THOUGHTS

1 - VERY CONFUSING:  The CFL weekly Game Notes package has amended what it's going to take for the Roughriders to stay in the playoff hunt.  Many of you are aware of the Riders' current situation and what the standings scenario looks like but many others are like me - bad at math - and need a refresher.  According to CFL Statistician Steve Daniel, the Riders can go 4-1 the rest of the way and still make the playoffs.  They've got two wins while B.C. and Winnipeg each have four.  One of those teams is going to achieve five wins because they play each other but if they go winless other than that, the Riders are in if they take care of business.  The Riders MUST finish ahead of those two teams because they've lost the tiebreaker to both.  Five wins by the Riders would help their cause even more.  Of course there's the Montreal factor, and the fact the Alouettes' five current wins have them in position for the first-ever Eastern crossover into the West, but for now we won't worry about that.

Very rarely have we even seen, in any league, a scenario where a team overcomes these odds.  But there's a first for everything and maybe 2015 will be it.

2 - NEED A BAGG WITH THAT?:  For my money, Rob Bagg has been the most outstanding Roughrider since Labour Day.  He's got 14 catches for 225 yards in that span and carries a three game touchdown streak into Saturday's game at BC.  Of course his outstanding play coincides with his move to slotback in place of the injured Chris Getzlaf and Bagg admitted he's only "keeping the position warm" until Getzlaf gets back.  However it's impossible not to notice Bagg's heroic efforts and you have to wonder if the thought has crossed his mind what his career would've been like if he'd spent the entire time at slotback.  That's where he played at Queen's University.  However Bagg's lot is to not complain and he's gained even more respect as of late, if that's possible.  He'll go down as one of the all-time great Roughriders and I'm guessing he's one of the reasons why the Rider Nation can't find it in their hearts to give up on this team despite this season's struggles.

3 - UPDATE ON GETZLAF:  2015 would have to be one of the more frustrating seasons in Chris Getzlaf's nine-year career.  Not only is his team struggling, but he's found himself on the injured list yet again with a left foot injury.  We're told he participated in Wednesday's closed practice and head coach Bob Dyce said things look "positive" for his return but he's not prepared to put a timetable on it.

4 - YOSHI:  Another guy who's been impossible not to notice lately is first year Roughrider offensive tackle Jermarcus Hardrick, and that's not just because of his 6'7", 320 lb frame.  He's started every game at right tackle since the coaching change and his enthusiasm has been undeniable.  Hardrick's been hustling down field blocking on plays (which isn't easy for a man that size) and celebrating in the endzone with teammates after touchdowns.  In fact he almost crushed Rob Bagg in Sunday's win over Montreal.

Everybody has a story and on Wednesday I asked Jermarcus what his is.  He explained that he had a rough upbringing in Mississippi and didn't meet his father until he was 16-years old.  That's because his dad was jailed when Jermarcus was only three months old.  His mother lives in a trailer park in Mississippi and Hardrick said he thinks of her before every game.  He's got a second chance at football and swore he'd make the most of it.   Is he ever!

I asked Jermarcus if he has a nickname and he admitted it's "Yoshi".  Why?  Because his older brother's nickname is Mario and their childhood friends tabbed Jermarcus as "Yoshi", Mario's dinosaur companion in the popular video game Super Mario.

5 - CATO:  It appears Montreal quarterback Rakeem Cato made the right move by forcing the Riders' hand into dropping him off their negotiation list in May so that he could join the Alouettes.  He finds himself in the starter's role this week after Als coach/GM Jim Popp elected to sit down Jonathan Crompton after a sub-par performance in Regina in Week 13.  Had Cato come to camp with the Riders - and made the team - he'd still on the bench behind Kevin Glenn.

6 - A SCOUTING MISNOMER:  Personnel people in all sports get incredibly wound up in "who found who" and it's understandable since that's how they build their track record.  The Roughriders identified Rakeem Cato and Drew Willy but they've wound up starting for other teams.  The Argonauts found Zach Collaros but he's now with Hamilton.  The B.C. Lions discovered Mike Reilly, but he's now starrring for the Edmonton Eskimos.  And the Calgary Stampeders gave Henry Burris his first opportunity but he cut his teeth elsewhere, for the most part.  In the CFL it appears, it's not where you start but rather where you end up.

7 - SOCIAL MEDIA:  The world of Facebook, Twitter and blogs may be a bit of a pain in the butt for those not up-to-speed but its power is undeniable.  Newly-acquired Roughrider offensive lineman Aaron Picton admitted on CKRM this week that he found out about his trade from Calgary on Twitter from the Roughriders' account.  Hockey defenceman Keith Aulie discovered on Twitter on Sunday that he'd been released by the Arizona Coyotes.  It seems that if you're not constantly surfing these apps, you're going to be left in the dust.  And that includes news about yourself!

8 - A CFL RULE:  Aaron Picton will not be practicing with the Roughriders while toiling with the Regina Rams.  A CFL rule stipulates that junior players may practice with CFL teams (a la Dan Clark, Mitch Thompson and Preston Bews) but CIS players may not.  I point this out because some listeners wrote into the SportsCage asking about it this week.

9 - OKAY BLUE JAYS:  The Blue Jays clinched the AL East pennant on Wednesday and the nation is celebrating.  But on Wednesday's SportsCage we asked listeners where they were the last time the Blue Jays accomplished the feat in 1993.  We discovered no one could remember where they were when the Jays  last finished first, but everyone could recall where they were when Toronto won the World Series.  The point?  The Jays haven't accomplished anything yet.  They're certainly on the right track - demolishing everything in their path - but the road really has just begun.  One has to wonder if Alex Anthopoulous and John Gibbons will go down in history like Pat Gillick and Cito Gaston did.

10 - DUB HUB:  It was a treat to visit with P.A. Raiders GM Curtis Hunt on the SportsCage this week.  He pointed out the early parity in the WHL East Division as all teams emerged from opening weekend with a win under their belt.  Despite their 1-0-0-1 record, the Brandon Wheat Kings remain the undisputed #1 team in the country in the CHL's rankings.  Some of my co-workers questioned why this is since some of the QMJHL teams have played a half dozen games already but I explained the CHL panel is made up of a group of NHL scouts who know the Wheat Kings are the top team in the nation even though they've only played a pair of games ... The Pats welcome Brandon Saturday night at 7:00 pm in a game where Regina will unveil new jerseys.  The contest will be televised live on Access 7 ... One last question: will we ever see a Regina Pats Booster Club again?  That would be great.

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THAT'S ALL FOR TODAY! THANKS FOR STOPPING BY
RP
@sportscage
IG: ridervoice

22 comments:

Anonymous said...

Look for one or two more thunder players to be added to the riders practice roster for the rest of the season. Riders taking notice of the stellar program going on in the hometown.

Anonymous said...

The day's of the booster club are long gone with the private ownership model. Booster club's similar to that of Moose Jaw's were to help the team raise funds, support the team on a volunteer basis to keep payroll down and really have no place in a private market club.

Anonymous said...

you don't math or read very well apparently! I read the cfl stats article a few weeks ago on the riders website. It said no team has made the playoffs since (whatever year) with less than seven wins, so the Riders would need to win out out to reach seven.

You assumed they just needed to win out to make it without actually researching.

Anonymous said...

Ah Brandon is only on top cause Kelly McCrimmon paid off the scouts to keep them as #1. Word has it that Rod went to Mr Semple and asked if he'd do the same to put the Pats on top.

Semple told him to beat it.

Anonymous said...

Rob Bagg .... one of the all-time great Riders. That's not really saying much about the Riders history is it. Like come on, he's got 14 catches for 225 yards in 4 games. Wow.

Anonymous said...

You must be new to this blog unless you didn't know he is known by many as Research free Rod. lol Rod or Carm research, nah!! Why bother

Anonymous said...

Booster clubs are full on whiners and complainers anyone who has any insight to Moose Jaw's knows there meetings are nothing more than pissing matches about how they don't get this or that. I know many front offices are so happy to be rid of their booster clubs

Trump

Anonymous said...

#9 Okay Blue Jays;

The biggest move the Blue Jays made was dumping Laurie and Reyes. They became a team as soon as the hot dogs were gone.

Bill

Anonymous said...

How good can a player be if their opponent beats them 72 to 8? Dinos have red shirts with more talent.
Thunder? Seriously? Junior players tend to play CIS if they still have the dream. Can't reason why any CIS player would select the Rams but the extra work and coaching helps transition to pro ball a la Ben Heenan and Demski.
Someone needs to get out and take a look outside of Regina.

Anonymous said...

Bag certainly has excelled at slot back and should be left there when Getz comes back. He almost always makes the catch where-as Getz drops some at the most necessary times. Let Getz play wide out

Anonymous said...

i love bagg, but you should recall he had a blatant drop at the goal line on sunday, before talking dropped balls.

Anonymous said...

A week or two ago I would have said the Riders have no hope in BC but given their performance last week and how close behind BC they are I believe they have become a dangerous team. I like it.

Anonymous said...

CIS top prospects gravitate to Laval in the east and Calgary in the west. You will always see 72-8 games in that league.

Anonymous said...

If Lulay plays we will likely lose. If they have no production at QB we have a chance.

Anonymous said...

Getzlaf's best years behind him.... I really like Chris but the reality of the situation is Riders will not be able to afford players like this who spend 1/3 to 1/2 of the season on IR. From a business perspective, time to move on and use those dollars to make the necessary changes to improve the talent pool on this Team. Next GM is going to have some tough decisions to make as Getzlaf not the only player at risk of being cut.

Anonymous said...

Bagg a plumber. He has never been a game changer like Fantuz, Farthing, Clermont with BC. Thelwell etc ...

Rodricko Pefersen

Anonymous said...

Bagg will easliy retire in the top 10 in all time Rider receiving yards.

Hard to not consider him a great. He should pass Dominguez by the end of the year and be around that 14 or 15 spot.

Anonymous said...

List the last four 72 to 8 games in the CIS. Gravitate toward Calgary? Better ask Manitoba if they recruit Dino leftovers. Ask BT and the Huskie program if Calgary gets all the recruits. Coaching, development, tradition may also be a factor. University programs and scholarships play a role but then you may believe that players want to play in Regina because it's Regina. Staying home in Regina means that one can remain in the parents basement, stay with old friends and routines, the Regina syndrome. Who would want to make new friends, develop new routines, experience different coaching philosophies, and grow up outside of home? Better players that's who.

Anonymous said...

"Bagg is a plumber'. Maybe, but where would the world be without plumbers. He can play on my team any day.

Dave

Anonymous said...

Hey Bruno! Laval the place I say, Laval.
McMaster also. Who the hell is BT???? Is this BT relevant to anything football?

Anonymous said...

Ha ha exactly. Awesome response!

Anonymous said...

That's the point Dave. Bagg comes to work everyday and has served the Roughriders club well with his on field contributions.

Rodricko Pefersen