Lots of news and pictures of the Tiger-Cats Black & Gold Fan Day at Alumni Stadium yesterday. It should come as no surprise that the Ticats’ players and fans, and the media, were impressed with what they saw. I think before this season is done that Alumni Stadium may be the most widely recognized football field in the country. A selection of media links to stories, photos and video follows.
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The Guelph Mercury’s take: Ticats bring Black and Gold day to UofG
QB Coach John Engel, a native of Norman OK, won’t be impressed with this:
Ticats quarterback Henry Burris, who joined the team last year, said the stadium reminded him and many other players of their playing days in college. Burris is from Oklahoma, and said Guelph and Alumni Stadium reminded him of Stillwater, Oklahoma, where he played.
The team couldn’t wait, he said, to get off the bus Saturday morning and get a feel for the playing surface. He called the surface one of the best in all of sports, with just the right level of cushioning and bounce.
And the fan perspective:
Fans that drove in Saturday from Hamilton were impressed with the stadium. And those from Guelph were awed.
Chard Vardy said he was surprised by the size of the stadium and is confident it will be a superb venue for CFL games.
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Scratching Post blogger Drew Edwards has a thorough post at Video, pics, news, notes and quotes from Black and Gold Day. Edwards summarizes the highlights of the Ticats first visit as a team to their home stadium for 2013, including …
• the players seemed to be pleased after their first real look at Alumni Stadium, their home for most of the 2013 season.
• a number of them, unsolicited, remarked on the quality of the FieldTurf field, which is just about a year old. Burris again.
“This is one of the best surfaces you can play on. You can tell it’s new, it felt good, it felt comfortable with the right type of cushion – it’s really good on the body. Knowing that I’m going to get tackled on it a few times, it’s good surface.”
As the title suggests, also included are a video breakdown, photos and Steve Milton’s article from the Hamilton Spectator.
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Finally, from the ticats.ca website – Alumni Stadium draws rave reviews
Saturday marked the Tiger-Cats annual Black and Gold Day: a pre-season practice where fans are invited to spectate, have the chance to win prizes and grab some autographs from their favourite Ticats players.
This season, Black and Gold Day took on added significance, as it was the first chance for Tiger-Cats coaches, players, and fans alike to take in their new home field for the 2013 season, Alumni Stadium.
Hamilton’s new ‘home away from home’ drew rave reviews from coaches and players alike, and all believe that Alumni Stadium will soon feel just like Ivor Wynne for the Ticats.
“I am really impressed,” said Head Coach Kent Austin about the stadium. “It’s really well thought out, and I think it’s going to be a great environment for us.”