Friday, August 17, 2018
SCRUFFY'S THIS N' THAT
--What did I miss while out of the office for a week? Apparently a lot!
--Rob Bagg and Cameron Marshall are back in the Rider dressing room and Duron Carter isn't. Will the presence of Bagg and Marshall and the absence of Carter be enough for the 3-4 Riders to beat the 7-0 Stampeders? It is what basically I feel a must-win if there is to be any chance of a home playoff game. You are already down one to Calgary in the season series and a loss Sunday will mean you lose the season series. You also need to beat Edmonton when they come to Regina Thanksgiving weekend. As I have said, there were signs coming out of the Edmonton loss that the team with a healthy Zach Collaros had turned the corner. Let's see what the Riders have up their sleeve in this one. If they can come out of the first quarter not down 24, it could be a different story if the game a couple of weeks ago is any indication.
--Some are asking why the Riders didn't keep Marshall and Bagg around when they were hurt instead of releasing them. Have you seen or heard about their cap issues? Some are suggesting Chris Jones bent the rules by releasing Bagg instead of putting him on the six-game list because of the ankle he hurt in the first days of training camp. I am sure Rob wasn't complaining because if he was we would have heard about it. The bottom line is he is back and ready to contribute. Was there a handshake deal there? If there was, I am guessing we won't be finding out about it. Whether or not he plays Sunday is another story, but if he does, the ovation he gets will be one loud one.
--Why is TSN defending the league so hard on the Johnny Manziel concussion issue? It looked like a concussion, and it was a concussion. You don't need to be a rocket scientist to see what happened. A Wednesday report by Matt Sciantti detailing that everything done after his hit at the goal-line in Ottawa was done legitimately. Yeah OK. Let's just call a spade a spade and admit the CFL made a huge mistake here ---one they are now trying to cover up. The eye in the sky missed it. Everyone missed it except for those watching. Did the Alouettes miss it? I'll leave that for you to decide. Say what you will about Manziel, but being allowed to continue playing after that ferocious hit was wrong. The whole "we are serious about player safety" stance being taken can't be taken seriously when incidents like this happen.
Zach Collaros may have hid his concussion, but everyone could see Manziel was not 100 percent ---everyone that is except the Alouettes coaching and medical stuff. If I were the CFLPA, I would be asking a lot of questions about this. If I were Randy Ambrosie, I would be asking the same questions.
--Jalen Ramsey is making Richard Sherman look like a choir boy. Sherman was able to back it up and likely still can. We will see if the Jacksonville defensive back can do the same this year after riling up many NFL quarterbacks with statements he made. He was being honest right? Isn't that what we want instead of guys that just give standard cliches? You can't have it both ways. You may not like it, but pro sports needs more guys like Jalen Ramsey.
--Congratulations to the Regina Red Sox. They did not win the WMBL final losing in 5 to Medicine Hat, but they put up a great fight and made it much tougher than the heavily favoured Mavericks thought it would be. The work Gary Brotzel and Bernie Eiswirth do year-round to keep the wheels moving on that organization is something that doesn't get the recognition they deserve. I don't know if this city truly knows how hard these two and others in that organization work for a season that is very short with very high turnover from year-to-year if not week-to-week. A win didn't come, but an unexpected playoff run that came one game short is nothing to be ashamed of.
--MLB looks bad with its seven game suspension to Florida pitcher Jose Urena. That basically translates to one lost start. Oh boy! There was absolutely no doubt Urena was trying to hit Atlanta's Ronald Acuna with the game's first pitch. The Marlins didn't like the fact Acuna had homered in three straight against them and sent a message. If baseball is going to be serious with these suspensions, they can't be games that translate to one start for a starting pitcher. A fielder is a different story as a seven game suspension is a week's play. It isn't that way for a starter. A seven-start penalty would have been better. Some day MLB will learn, but this isn't the case in which they do so.
--Things you notice when on holidays that you don't notice before. Where are all the signs leading into Regina that used to commemorate great Riders like Ron Lancaster, George Reed, Dave Ridgway and Ray Elgaard and how long have they been gone for?. Those signs should have been permanent! Were they taken down for the construction of the Regina bypass and will they be put back up upon completion?
--Jim Hopson and John Terry will be formally enshrined into the Plaza of Honor tonight at Mosaic Stadium. One wonders where this team would be today if it weren't for Hopson who helped make the franchise what it is today as the popularity of the brand continues to be strong. Now let's have this conversation next year when we are welcoming Kerry Joseph in. I put up a poll on my Twitter account (@scruffyregina) about who should go in first Joseph, Shivers or both in the same class. Let it be known I would be OK with the last choice. At the time of this writing, many seem to be in that boat as well. Rider Nation would embrace KJ, would they do the same with Shiv. His speech would be one to remember and probably wouldn't last as long as Scott Schultz's.
--The Thunder and Hilltops meet Saturday night to get the PFC going. Game time at Mosaic is 7 o'clock. What type of crowd can we get for that one? Those two organizations certainly deserve your support. What a great kickoff to the season it should be. That's followed Wednesday by a Rams pre-season game at Leibel Field against Manitoba. Summer must be nearing an end if junior and university football are starting up. I'm OK with that. We are also 35 days away from the start of the WHL season and 20 days from the start of the NFL season. I'm OK with that too.
That's all I got. Have a great weekend!