More from CFL preseason – June 11/16

I’m heading to Toronto this afternoon to see the Argos-Ticats exhibition game. It’s another game involving multiple former Gryphons – Ryan Bomben in black & gold and Jake Reinhart, Cam Walker, Curtis Newton and Ryan Nieuwesteeg in double blue. View the depth charts for the Argos and the Tiger-Cats.

I’m almost as interested in seeing the new BMO Field and checking out the Argonauts new tailgating initiative, as I am the game. While I’ve known my entire life that the Argos Suck, I really hope that the move to BMO Field will be good for that franchise. The CFL needs all its franchises to be healthy and well supported and Toronto is a particularly important market for the league.

BMO Field

The Argonauts new ownership has invested a lot in re-branding the team and done a lot of market research to make sure that they get it right. From the research they learned that younger fans [20- & 30-somethings] want tailgating to be part of the game-day experience. Check out the Argos Tailgating info page and Tailgating Frequently Asked Questions [FAQs].

I can’t help but think that some of the research the Argos have done and they are now attempting to put it into practice, ought to be taken seriously by the OUA. If the conference, like the Argos, wants to increase attendance then every OUA football game should include the opportunity for fans to tailgate. Banning barbecues in parking lots and harrassing tailgaters won’t grow the game. Fears and misconceptions about tailgating need to be overcome!

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More stories …

♦  A story on the Gryphon TeamApp looks at all the former Gryphons still in CFL training and on the coaching/management side of the line – Gryphon football in the CFL

♦ From Stampeders.com – A rosy situation for Thorn – the story intro …

Cam Thorn admits he was blindsided.

After two full seasons with the BC Lions that saw him appear in each and every game — 36 in the regular season and two in the playoffs — the offensive lineman was informed his services were no longer required.

“I was caught so off guard,” acknowledged the 26-year-old Midhurst, Ont., product, “but I think this is a blessing in disguise. I was shocked for a few days but I kept working and waiting for a phone call.”

That call came from the Calgary Stampeders, who brought Thorn in for his first practice in Red and White on Wednesday. The Stamps just happen to have another University of Guelph alum — punter Rob Maver — on the roster.

“I used to snap to him, so it’s pretty cool to have that connection,” said Thorn, who is also acquainted with Stamps guard and fellow Ontarian Shane Bergman.

♦ An Argonauts.ca video recorded in Alumni Stadium, focuses on the Argos new kicker/punter Lirim Hajrullahu, including his work with Long Snapper Jake Reinhart.

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Photos from the Bombers-Alouettes exhibition game on June 8. Courtesy of Lou Toppan.

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