|Larry Schwentke & Chris Jones|
Fellow CFL fans,
On day 3 of CFL Week I entered the facility the same time as Rider GM/Coach Jones so it was time for a hand shake and photo op.
On the Main Stage the first guests were hall of fame inductees Kelvin Anderson and Anthony Calvillo. Anderson has the most consecutive 1,000 yard rushing seasons with 8 – ('96 to '03. George Reed leads with eleven 1,000 yard seasons from '64 to '75, but missed getting 1,000 in 1970 .
Next up for interviews were Weston Dressler and Commissioner Jeffrey Orridge. Shortly after TSN’s Rod Smith reviewed the achievements and football obstacles faced by Warren Moon, Anthony Calvillo and Mike Reilly.
My night ended at the “You Make the Call” session with head ref Glen Johnson. While last year the CFL refs got 94% of the calls right I only was correct on 10 of 14 calls reviewed. Of the 110 people participating only one person was correct on all of the plays. All questions had four options and for one call 42% picked answer three and 42% picked answer four. Johnson’s response was “That is where the refs have to decide!”
Johnson’s funniest story was from his first CFL game as a young ref where the Riders happened to be playing. He saw Ray Elgaard push off, turn and catch a pass. Later Johnson saw the same thing happen again. Shortly thereafter he approached Ray and said “Mr. Elgaard, that action is close to bing a penalty”. Elgaard’s response was “Look kid, call it a penalty or get the f*** off my back”.
Day 4 was highlighted with three Riders (Nic Demski WR #9, Derrick Dennis OL #63 and Jarriel King OL #61 ) being interviewed on the main stage. At the back of the crowd were also Riders Josiah St. John OL #59, Willie Jefferson DE #7 and Justin Cox DB #1. These were just some of the 34 current and former players I was able to identify during the week.
Later I happened to be walking by the Grey Cup when Anthony Calvillo and his boys were getting their photo taken by Mrs. Calvillo. Finally as I was heading out who should be coming in to sign autographs but Darian Durant. And he stopped to talk with Eric Tillman which allowed me the chance for another photo.
On Saturday it is off to watch the nation combine activities which lead up to the CFL Canadian draft which takes place in early May.
Ah the freedom of retirement is sure great! And the fan friendliness of the CFL is just as great!!