Wednesday, October 3, 2018
10 THINGS FOR CAPITAL AUTO MALL
2 - CLINCHED OR CLENCHED?: Pretty much everyone around here is giddy about the Roughriders' recent stretch of games where they've won 6 of their past 7. However they still have plenty of work to do if they want to host a playoff game for the first time since 2013. In fact, the only team who's clinched a playoff berth so far is 11-2 Calgary and should the Stampeders win this week, they'll clinch at least 2nd place. For the Green & White, a win over Edmonton and a Winnipeg loss at Ottawa clinches a playoff spot. Other than triggering playoff bonuses, there's nothing champagne-worthy over that.
3 - THE EAST: Montreal and Toronto are clearly the problem children of the CFL and their combined record of 6-22 isn't helping things. However the good news is they're not in danger of folding which used to be the fear. The Argos are in good shape under the MLSE umbrella while my Montreal spies tell me the Wetenhall family is in no danger of running out of money, and have zero plans of selling the team. However they're already talking about the off-season in those markets, and it figures to be volatile.
4 - MANZIEL MANIA: Rider supporters seemed turned off by TSN's love-in with Alouettes QB Johnny Manziel during Sunday's game. I wouldn't know about it; I was on the radio at the time. But when TSN starts pushing something, you're best to just get out of the way. Manziel draws viewers and clicks and until that changes, you'll need to accept "Johnny Football" being jammed down your throat everyday. In the USA, they're sick of him (that's why he's here). It seems that day is drawing near in Canada too. (Unless Manziel actually wins a game or lives up to expectations, which I don't see happening). I'm a little surprised the future of that franchise has been put in his hands.
5 - ZACH ATTACK: A Regina reporter referred to Saskatchewan QB Zach Collaros as "boring, on and off the field" this week. Knowing Zach the way I've gotten to, he'd laugh at that and shake his head. I suppose it's boring to be 7-2 as a starter and donate your own money to an inner city community shelter in Regina, and to the Police Drug Task Force in your hometown of Stubenville, Ohio. For whatever reason, the Rider Nation has been slow to warm up to Collaros but I expect that to change later this fall. (Hint: Get your jerseys now).
7 - 2020 GREY CUP: When Riders President Craig Reynolds revealed on CKRM's SportsCage that Saskatchewan will bid to host the 2020 Grey Cup, my first thought was "Others need not apply". I still think that, although the only other team I could see putting in a bid is the Hamilton Tiger-Cats. In the end, the CFL Governors will vote for whomever can rake in the most $$$, and I'd suggest that's the Rider Nation.
8 - TWO YEARS AWAY: I've always said you're in good shape if you have a solid Head Coach-Quarterback combo. (Dickenson/Mitchell, Trestman/Calvillo, Belichick/Brady, Tomlin/Roethlisberger). Although Chris Jones and Zach Collaros aren't under contract with Saskatchewan into 2020, I see no reason not to expect that tandem to be in charge of Canada's Team by then.
9 - HISTORY: We can all agree that November 24, 2013 was the greatest day in Saskatchewan history, when the Roughriders mollywhopped the Hamilton Tiger-Cats 45-23 in the Grey Cup in Taylor Field. When Darian Durant lifted the trophy, I thought to myself "It can't possibly get better than this". Would winning the Grey Cup in the new stadium be bigger and better than 2013? I don't know. Let's find out.
10 - RANDOM THOUGHTS: According to historian Kevin Shaw, the Regina Pats have never started a season 0-5 in their 100 years! If they don't win Friday in Swift Current, they'll do just that. It irks me I haven't been able to see the Pats in the regular season yet, to form my own assessment. ... It's opening night in the NHL! My Stanley Cup Finals prediction: San Jose-Tampa Bay. ... I tried to watch the National League Wildcard game last night. But ... too slow, and too long. Over to Dateline. ... It drives me bonkers that teams don't sell programs anymore. Absolutely bonkers. At least the NFL does. The Eskimos do too. ... Podcasts are like blogs were 10 years ago. Everybody's got one. But only the smart ones will survive. Here's mine. ... Let It Snow! Glad to see people are taking this week's early snow dump with a smile.