|Courtesy Lee Jones/CTV|
1 - The moment I saw Justin Dunk's 3DownNation.com report six-or-so weeks ago that the Riders had added Vince Young to their negotiation list, I thought to myself "This is real". It's not a publicity stunt or a gimmick, because Rider boss Chris Jones doesn't go in for that.
So when Vince Young landed at the Regina International Airport Wednesday night and was met by a throng of Regina reporters, it really was no surprise that it's come this far.
Kudos to TSN's Gary Lawless for breaking the story on Wednesday.
2 - As the report on Wednesday went, Young and his agent Leigh Steinberg were travelling to Regina to finalize details on his contract with the Riders. Presumably if all went well, a news conference would be called for Thursday and frankly, I'm expecting any moment to get an email from the Riders blaring, "RIDERS CALL NEWS CONFERENCE". However so far, nothing.
*UPDATE*: AND THERE IT IS ... The Riders have called a news conference for 11:30 am at New Mosaic Stadium. We'll be there!
3 - Young obviously seems serious about this comeback with the Roughriders so I don't envision any snags in their negotiations. Provided the -12 temperatures didn't turn him off overnight (why couldn't he have come last week), this should be a slam dunk. I wondered where and how Chris Jones would wine and dine the Vince Young contingent Wednesday night but as you can see by the photo, Young brought his little son with him and that changes everything. A quick supper and a visit to the hotel water park was likely more than satisfactory.
4 - What about the money terms? My suspicion is that will be a closely-guarded secret. It's doubtful the Young camp will want America to know how little he signed for here and the Riders likely hold the same view. If I had a guess, it would be for no more than $150,000 but that's just a guess. However if the dollar figure gets leaked, that'll be HUGE news. America is watching this story unfold BIG TIME, however that's not what's important.
5 - So can he play? That's what's importat and I guess we'll find out soon. At 6'5", 235 lbs and being the #3 pick of the 2006 NFL Draft by the Tennessee Titans, you know he's got all the physical gifts. I'd be leery of his knowledge of the CFL if it wasn't for his agent, Leigh Steinberg, who knows this league exceptionally well. Vince Young doesn't want to embarrass himself so I can't imagine he's not physically and mentally ready to play.
Young wore #10 with the Texas Longhorns and Tennessee Titans to honour his mother who was born on June 10. It just so happens the Riders have #10 available after the release of CB Fred Bennett.
Some things are just meant to be.
*EDIT* Rider LB Henoc Muamba is reportedly now wearing #10. It appears there will need to be a Rock, Paper, Scissors competition.
6 - But hold the phone! Scruffy said in the CKRM newsroom on Wednesday that there's no way Vince Young ever takes a snap in the CFL. He feels there's just too much that could go wrong between now and the preseason opener on June 10 against Winnipeg at New Mosaic Stadium. However I'm not so sure.
If Chris Jones thinks this will work, then I think everyone needs to get off his back and let this play out. Again, Jones has been hired to turn the Saskatchewan Roughriders around. Let him try to do it.
7 - You'll have to help me out on something. All these sports radio shows across the country are calling me and asking "What's the Rider Nation saying about Vince Young?" So I've posted a Titan Auto Poll on the top left side of the page (under the Molson Canadian ad) and would love for you to vote on it. Thanks!
8 - Beyond all of that, the club has made some critical signings at other positions which is exactly what Jones said he was going to do: take the pressure off the QB position by enhancing the talent around him. Wednesday's signing of DB Jeff Hecht provides an excellent 1-2 punch at Canadian Safety whatwith the free agent signing of Marc-Olivier Brouillette.
Tuesday's addition of Canadian DT Eddie Steele was earth-shattering. The Rider defense will have strong Canadians right up the middle with Steele, Henoc Muamba, and Brouillette/Hecht.
Now we learn the Riders are in the running for the services of Canadian offensive lineman J'Michael Deane.
Look out Nelly.
9 - All is right in the world: The Regina Pats posted back-to-back wins with a 4-2 triumph in Swift Current Wednesday night. The Pats are now three wins shy of a franchise record with six games to go.
However the club slipped to #3 in the CHL rankings while the rival Moose Jaw Warriors snuck into the Top 10 at #10.
This all sets up a mind-bogglingly massive home-and-home series this weekend between the Pats and Warriors beginning Friday in the Brandt Centre. We'll have Saturday's broadcast from Moose Jaw on Access and Shaw.
Whether it's this weekend, or a playoff meeting this spring, let the best team win. Hopefully it doesn't denigrate to fan fights in the parking lot and vandalized cars.
10 - Saskatchewan's Adam Casey had last night off at the Brier but at 5-4, he's likely going to bite the dust. He sits 7th and as you know, the top four make the playoffs. As far as I can tell he hasn't been officially eliminated but he has a tough row to hoe.
However his five wins are better than most predicted he'd be able to collect and it's been a decent showing for the Green & Yellow in St. John's.
And if I may, does anyone know of a decent curling app with up-to-the-minute curling scores and standings of the Grand Slam Events? It's a major pain to have to try to search it on TSN.ca or Curling.ca, particularly when you're doing a sports radio talkshow on the fly.
If there is one already, I apologize, and please let me know what it is. If there isn't, somebody needs to get on it.
BIRTHDAYS: Happy 25th Birthday today to Rider linebacker Dillon Grondin, and Happy Birthday to former Rider quarterback Dalton Bell! (2008-2009).
THAT'S IT FOR TODAY ... SEE YOU ON THE RADIO!