Snow forces changes

DB Jailon Bell on Alumni Stadium turf - March 20/14

DB Jailon Bell on Alumni Stadium turf – March 20/14

As you can see from the photo above the turf of Alumni Stadium was snow covered late last week. With temperatures remaining below freezing very little has changed. There were even warnings of a further 2-5 cm of snow to fall this afternoon. Temperatures are expected to stay well below freezing until Thursday. Why does that matter? Well, there is a combined practice/scrimmage with the York Lions scheduled for Alumni Stadium on Sunday, March 30. Or, at least there was. The snow-covered field has forced the practice to be shifted to York Stadium and its new turf field. The time and date remain the same – Sunday @ 1pm. This will be the Gryphons first appearance on York’s new turf. The Lions still had natural grass when Guelph last played there in 2012.

It sounds like the combined practice with WLU on Saturday, April 5 will also be moved to Laurier’s field. For some reason the snow on the new turf field at Guelph cannot be shovelled or cleared by mechanical means. Perhaps it’s a warranty issue or just the nature of the turf, I don’t know, but Laurier doesn’t seem to have the same issues with their field. The Golden Hawks spent many hours shovelling their field in order to conduct spring practices. This was a good year to hold camp in Florida!

WLU"s University Stadium - March 5 Photo: @MichaelFaulds

WLU”s University Stadium – March 5
Photo: @MichaelFaulds

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Speaking of having to re-locate scheduled events …

News that the Tiger-Cats new home – Tim Horton’s Field – may not be ready on time for their July 26 home opener against the Ottawa RedBlacks has been in the news for the past week. Stories from the Hamilton Spectator here and here.

The Guelph Mercury didn’t waste any time checking out what that could mean for Guelph, given that the City and the University of Guelph bailed the CFL club out last season, and tells us … Tiger-Cats unlikely to play in Guelph if new stadium delayed.

I drove around the entire project last week and I tend to agree with the view that this “news” is just a “cover your ass” notice and the six week delay is truly a “worst case scenario” unlikely to become reality. Contractors issue these types of statements all the time. The endgame is usually to provide themselves with a legal defense or to draw concessions from the customer. “Okay, we’ll pick up half the OT costs if …”, for example.

I’ll be surprised if the Ticats don’t play their opener in their new stadium.


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