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Thursday, March 24, 2016



1 - The "new" logo of the Saskatchewan Roughriders reminds me of that old Tide commercial from the 1980's.  "I can't see the difference?  Can you see the difference?"

Kudos to the team for "cleaning up" any minor issues the logo had dating back to its introduction in 1985 and streamlining the colour scheme.  However if the club had attempted to alter the logo in any way more than that, there likely would have been riots.

Thanks to Roughriders Director of Retail Operations Mark Habicht for stopping by 620 CKRM's SportsCage on Wednesday to explain the reasons behind the move, and award us with hats that feature both the new and old style logos.

Who can remember the furor that surrounded the logo change in 1985?  Frankly, I don't.  But judging by the way this province loves its football team but hates change, I can't imagine it went over too well 30 years ago.

2 - Former Roughriders receiver Jordan Sisco (2010-2014) is a pretty happy guy these days.  He's been promoted to manager at Regina's Gold's Gym locations.  He's doing well in life, and is a good guy.  He departed the Roughriders with five seasons to his credit and a Grey Cup ring in 2013, plus a tryout with the NFL's Indianapolis Colts.  However there's no question the 2nd round pick out of the University of Regina didn't meet expectatins.  He was injured a lot.

3 - The Winnipeg Blue Bombers announced the 2015 Grey Cup generated $80-million in economic activity in Winnipeg in area last November.  However I have to call B.S. on that one.  The 2013 Grey Cup in Regina was bursting at the seams with hours-long lineups to get into the team parties and city restaurants and watering holes.  The stadium held almost 10,000 more and tt seemed that thousands more people came to Regina for that Grey Cup Week than did Winnipeg last year.  And the Saskatchewan Grey Cup generated $91-million, which is not a lot greater than Manitoba's reported figure.  However - if it's true - kudos to Wade Miller and his crew over there because as we noted at the time, no detail was overlooked.  If the weather had been better, it might've been boffo.

However my only contribution to the Winnipeg economy was a couple of parking tickets and $2.89 per day at Starbucks.

4 - It is simply outstanding that CFL officials will wear #80 on their uniforms this year to honour Ken Picot who passed away on Sunday.  It's a fitting tribute for the man who's been properly remembered this week.  He passed away on Sunday after a brief battle with liver cancer.

5 - Was saddened to hear of the passing of former Toronto Mayor Rob Ford.  Cancer got him too.  Say what you will about the guy, but he was much-loved.  I never met the man but friends of his say he was a "man of the people" and was genuine as they come.  Former B.C. Lions quarterback-turned-broadcaster Giulio Caravatta was a high school football teammate of Ford's in Toronto.  Giulio was the QB and Ford was the centre.  "It's true," Giulio quipped a few years back.  "I had my hands on Rob Ford's crack!"

6 - It's a quiet time in the CFL right now.  That means it would be a great time for TSN or the CFL to profile some of the CIS football players who are expected to go in the May 10 CFL Canadian College Draft.  Justin Dunk is doing a nice job of it for but Sportsnet has done more coverage of prospects than any other network.

Want to learn how to get ahead of the pack in the world of media relations and fan interaction?  Come to my seminar on May 14 at Mosaic Stadium.  The details are here:

- One can be disappointed that Regina Pats star Adam Brooks was denied the WHL's East Conference Player of the Year nod despite his 120-point, league-leading season or you can look at this way:  we have a wealth of worthy superstars in the WHL these days including Moose Jaw's Dryden Hunt and Brandon's Ivan Provorov.  The talent level is as high in the Dub as I've seen it for at least 10 years.  And maybe this will simply provide fuel for Brooks to light it up in the playoffs.

8 - Brooks is the first Regina Pat to lead the WHL in scoring since Dale Derkatch in 1983 and "The Rat" was on the SportsCage with us this week.  Derkatch now scouts for the Toronto Maple Leafs and says even though Brooks has been passed over the past two years in the NHL Draft, he's sure to hear his name called this June.  And failing that, he'll sign an NHL free agent deal with someone.  If Dryden Hunt can sign with Florida, Brooks is worthy of signing somewhere.

9 - The Regina Pats-Lethbridge Hurricances series will be played at breakneck speed.  If you're a fan of "skilled hockey", then you'd better get your a$$ down to the Brandt Centre.  I haven't seen the 'Canes play this year but have seen the Pats enough to know they were one of the fastest teams that's ever represented the Queen City.  And they finished behind Lethbridge.  It should be one heckuva series and I'll stick to my prediction of the Pats in six.  Playoff experience is crucial and the Hurricanes have none, while the Pats have been through a few wars and have the scars to show it.

10 - I finally read a "Letter To My Younger Self" that hit home.  And after reading it, I'm done.  For good.  It's all contained in this article right here by former Major Leaguer Curt Schilling:

11 - I was shocked - absolutely floored - by reading last week's Canadian television ratings and learned that of the top 15 most-watched sporting events over the past seven days, curling claimed four of them.  And the Toronto Raptors were the fifteenth-most watched sport!  I don't get this country's passion for curling but that's your business.  It's simply too slow for me.  And as for the Raptors, more people watched PGA and Nascar in Canada last week than the #2 team in the NBA East.  I can't figure it out, but there's no reason for me to.

12 - Tourism Saskatoon told CBC Radio this morning they'd like to see a "major new" sports facility downtown to help attract new visitors to the city. Sigh. Talk about locking the barn door after the horse got out.