Thursday was probably the hottest day in Saskatoon so far for Saskatchewan Roughriders Training Camp 2016 presented by Coors Light. It was sunny and 29 degrees Celsius. In the above photo, it was cloudy to begin the day but it didn't last ..
The Rider Store is on hand each day selling boatloads of merchandise. The new Adidas apparel is very popular ...
A local school poses for a photo at practice. But it won't turn out too well! Attendants at the Pedersen Media Summit know you can't have the sun at your back when taking photos!!
Rider strength coach Clinton Spencer works out some players behind the Griffiths Stadium stands ..
Chris Jones with his daily media update. More details on that below ...
The Riders' #92 Tim Agbaje (U of S Huskies grad) poses with my man Colby, who turns five tomorrow ..
DB Graig Newman missed the practice and is listed as "day-to-day" by Coach Jones ...
New running back Matt Walter chats with a fan ...
Brendon "Blue" Labatte poses beside his medichair which is getting him back and forth from the cafeteria ..
98 bags of ice are delivered daily for the cold tub. That's 72,000 lbs for all of training camp ..
How close are punter Josh Bartel and his long-snapper Jorgen Hus? Thisclose ..
And all set up for another SportsCage at 4:00 pm on 620 CKRM ..
DAY 13 NOTEBOOK:
1 - With a home preseason game just over 48 hours away (Saturday versus B.C. at 7:00 pm at Mosaic Stadium), Thursday's workouts were scaled back to one-a-day. Chris Jones said he doesn't want a "leg-weary" team on the field Saturday night.
2 - Jones made an interesting point on Wednesday that I forgot to bring up. He said "We're ahead of where we want to be, but still not close to being a championship team". That was in response to a question from CJWW's John Fraser who asked if Jones had anything positive to report through 12 days of training camp. At the very least, the club is not behind and will be ready for game action Saturday night under the lights.
3 - Saturday's forecast continues to call for rain and a low of 12 degrees over night. The day-time high is 21 degrees.
4 - Thursday was the third-straight day the offense beat the defense in the team period. I'm not sure what that's a sign of other than that the offense is tightening up and really coming along. Darian Durant threw a touchdown pass to Naaman Roosevelt on the first series followed by a B.J. Coleman-to-Clarence Denmark TD strike on the second drive. The offense was up 3-0 early on just three plays.
Brett Smith and the offense was 2-and-out on the third series, but using the first string offensive line.
Philip Sims quarterbacked the fourth series and habitually found John Chiles for positive gains. Hew threw a 40-yard TD pass to - I believe - Chiles to cap the drive. I wrote in my notes that the TD pass was to Sims. (How dumb can you be?)
Jones wouldn't disclose who will start at quarterback Saturday night against the Lions, nor what the rotation will be.
5 - Offensive linemen Xavier Fulton and Brendon Labatte were absent for a second straight day. Their spots were filled by Marcus Hall and Andrew Jones.
6 - Judging by Thursday, your starting defense on Saturday will likely look like this:
DB: COX-BROOKS-FRANCIS-GAINEY-DEAN JR.
7 - Regarding the lingering and undisclosed injury to defensive end Justin Capicciotti, Jones told reporters, "He's gotta get well". He also says he has no idea when he'll be healthy enough to play.
8 - Linebacker Dillon Grondin switched his jersey number from 76 to 48. I asked him about it and he said, "I earned it". My guess he feels it's more of a true linebacker number. Then we spotted a fan in the crowd with a new Rider jersey with #76 on it and Grondin momentarily wondered if it was for him. We had a laugh over that.
9 - Three defensive linemen names to keep a close eye on Saturday night: 78 Tony Criswell, 0 Jonathan Newsome and 91 Ino Vitale.
10 - My arms are aching from these push-ups they force us to do each morning. They say if this team goes all the way, we'll be expected to do 105 during Grey Cup Week. I stopped objecting to it after Week 1 of training camp.
THAT'S IT! SEE YOU ON THE RADIO ...