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elly63 Sep 19, 2017 12:25 AM

And speaking of the Commish in two months on the job he is really getting his message out there to the big media players. Last time it was CNN, now SI and NFL football writing dean Peter King.

CFL Takes Leadership Position in Football Safety
Peter King The MMQB si.com September 18th, 2017

The Canadian Football League has told its nine franchises that, except for training camp in 2018, full-contact practices will be banned through the end of the 2018 season. Players can wear helmets in practice, but no shoulder pads, and tackling in practice will not be allowed. I talked to the CFL commissioner, former offensive lineman Randy Ambrosie, on Friday about how it came about.

MMQB: How’d you make this happen, especially in-season like this?

Ambrosie: It’s what I can only describe as a magnificent display of partnership between us and the players union. It will give our players more time to recuperate, and stay on the field. There was another part of this, going from [18 games in] 20 weeks to 21 weeks. Because of our nine-team structure, because not all of our teams have access to their facilities at all times, we have had some tight turnarounds on our games. We have now gone to a 21-week schedule, staying at 18 games. It dramatically improves the time players will have to rest and recuperate. One example this year was Ottawa. The Redblacks had three games in 11 days [a Friday-Wednesday-Monday schedule.] That is just way too much football is too tight a time. There is something magnificent and elegant about simplicity. We wanted to do something fairly immediate and avoid the confusion of tackling too many issues at once. It is going to challenge our coaches, who I believe are world-class. It’s going to be different. Coaches begin to wean themselves off padded practices later in the season anyway. We know coaches can go with less, because we’ve seen that in football now anyway. Coaches will adapt. They will find new training techniques.

MMQB: Have you gotten any pushback from football people over the decision?

Ambrosie: I have not had one of those calls at all. We had our [CFL] Hall of Fame inductions last night, and I spoke to a couple of our coaches. They were positive and polite and constructive. I am aware this may have cost me one or two Thanksgiving dinner invitations, but the reaction has been almost entirely positive. It was a quick decision, and some would argue too quick. But when you’re on the doorstep of doing the right thing, quick is good.

MMQB: How much are you concerned about the future of football, with all the issues of head trauma and CTE that have surfaced?

Ambrosie: Talking about player safety is not just words to me. It means very much. The [future of football] has been on my mind throughout this. The more we do together to make this game safer, it will inspire confidence that the game can be played at the safest level. … What I love about the game is it offers the greatest inclusiveness of any game. You can be a gigantic person, super strong, and you can be a small person, super fast, and then in a locker room all these things come together. We need to fight, literally, for the future of football, and we do that by making it safe. I think the battle for the future of the game is one we will win. We’re teaching safer tackling. It’s gonna take us all pushing it. Change is hard. We all know that. The fraternity of football people, we’ll find our way. I’m honored to be part of it.

TorontoDrew Sep 19, 2017 2:07 AM

Just looked to buy my brother in law Jays tickets for next year in Seattle. All 4 games are almost sold out and the remaining tickets start at $216 American.

JHikka Sep 19, 2017 2:33 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by elly63 (Post 7926335)
How can you tell if it is a "giveaway" situation from a photo?

Generally, if a team claims a near sellout or a noticeably higher turnout than usual without any physical difference in bodies in the stadium. Things like having a lot of youth teams in the stadium scream giveaways. Fury FC and a lot of CHL teams do this. This goes back to the discussion of teams claiming tickets distributed instead of physical bodies through gates.

Quote:

Originally Posted by elly63 (Post 7926335)
Why would they suddenly start to give away tickets?

Because their previous two home games had attendances lower than franchise norms.

Quote:

Originally Posted by elly63 (Post 7926335)
It doesn't make sense that they would reverse policy and start that kind of thing late in the season when I don't believe they have done anything like that (on a large scale) in recent memory.

Sure. It's all conjecture one way or the other, whether attendance was buffeted by REDBLACKS fans or a sunny afternoon or if 4,000 more Alouettes fans showed up because the team wasn't playing on a Thursday.

Acajack Sep 19, 2017 2:58 PM

The Alouettes do have these unexplained attendance blips from time to time (upward or downward). More so than most other teams it seems.

Berklon Sep 19, 2017 3:33 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Acajack (Post 7926876)
The Alouettes do have these unexplained attendance blips from time to time (upward or downward). More so than most other teams it seems.

Not the Ti-cats... regardless of how many empty seats there are, their announced attendance never seems to differ by more than 400-500.

elly63 Sep 19, 2017 8:01 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Acajack (Post 7926876)
The Alouettes do have these unexplained attendance blips from time to time (upward or downward). More so than most other teams it seems.

https://i.imgur.com/FUXKgr6.png
Present capacity 23,420

le calmar Sep 19, 2017 8:14 PM

Wasn't Molson Stadium's capacity 25,000 not long ago? Have they covered up some seating due to poor attendances?

esquire Sep 19, 2017 8:17 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by le calmar (Post 7927250)
Wasn't Molson Stadium's capacity 25,000 not long ago? Have they covered up some seating due to poor attendances?

IIRC they removed the really crappy west end zone seats... they were basically small portable grandstands that were not elevated at all. Probably not much of a view of the game from there. From what I recall watching on TV, I think they replaced it with a patio/party area.

elly63 Sep 19, 2017 10:54 PM

The stadium has a capacity of 23,420 the result of a renovation project begun in 2009 that increased capacity from 20,202 to over 25,000, before seats were removed in 2014 to reduce capacity to its current level. (Wikipedia)

Edit: Why did I post that, talk about stating the obvious, I believe esquire has it right.

https://i.imgur.com/wV1b1ji.jpg

JHikka Sep 19, 2017 11:24 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by elly63 (Post 7927236)
Present capacity 23,420

The graphic you posted didn't include 2016, so i'll include it here for the sake of posterity:

2013: 23,004
2014: 20,679
2015: 21,430
2016: 20,378
2017: 19,523 (after seven home games)

As shown in the graphic, Als haven't had a sub-20K average since 2001, which is right around the last time the Als were pulling games with 18K. 2017 is the first time they've dipped that low for individual games since 2001/2002. Back then, unless i'm mistaken, the capacity was roughly 3K lower, so their 18K in a 20K stadium was higher cap% than today's 18K in a 23K stadium.

Regardless of capacity, sub-20K outings for the Als have been increasing the past few seasons.

TorontoDrew Sep 20, 2017 12:43 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by elly63 (Post 7927236)
https://i.imgur.com/FUXKgr6.png
Present capacity 23,420


I love the stadium. One of my favorite in the MLSE. I do love BMO though about as much for different reasons.

FrankieFlowerpot Sep 20, 2017 1:37 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by TorontoDrew (Post 7927535)
I love the stadium. One of my favorite in the MLSE. I do love BMO though about as much for different reasons.

This isn't an MLS (or MLSE) stadium

Montreal Impact play at Stade Saputo

elly63 Sep 20, 2017 2:14 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by FrankieFlowerpot (Post 7927560)
This isn't an MLS (or MLSE) stadium. Montreal Impact play at Stade Saputo

Had to laugh at that one.

Horus Sep 20, 2017 2:53 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by mistercorporate (Post 7926273)
^^
The Wolfpack story has been a revelation, I have got to check out some games next season. Are their games even viewable online or on TV?

Wolfpack games were broadcast on GameTV this season. I have no idea if that arrangement will continue next season.

TorontoDrew Sep 20, 2017 3:01 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by elly63 (Post 7927597)
Had to laugh at that one.


Oops, well I still stand by my comment. Just replace MLS with CFL

elly63 Sep 25, 2017 2:22 PM

Football fans everywhere will love the CFL's new mobile game 'CFL Football Frenzy'
BarDown Staff tsn.ca

Football fans, the newest game to get addicted to is here!

On Thursday, the CFL launched a mobile game called 'CFL Football Frenzy.' It's an arcade football game that is fun, fast-paced and full of scoring that allows users to play all three phases of the game, collect card packs and much, much more.

https://i.imgur.com/bPz9BqA.png

#CFLFrenzy is here! Designed for kids, fun for everyone! . . . Download and play the new #CFL mobile game at the link in our bio! iOS version available now, Android coming soon!

Fans can play as their favourite team and customize their players in a variety of fun and unique ways.

Furthermore, fans can play as the stars in the CFL or as themselves in the 7-on-7 style gameplay.

Safe to say the teams, players and fans are loving the new game which every football fan should download and play now ahead of Week 14, which kicks off tomorrow night across TSN.

TorontoDrew Sep 25, 2017 2:37 PM

I think you meant to post this advertisement over in the CFL thread.

elly63 Sep 25, 2017 2:38 PM

CFL working hard to improve viewership
Terry Jones edmontonjournal.com September 23, 2017

Three years ago in the CFL, attendance and TV numbers started to slide.

Into the game came Christina Litz to tackle the problem.

You could make a case that she’s becoming the league’s most valuable player.

The new Senior VP of Content & Marketing, Litz has brought several new initiatives into play including the successful CFL Week in Regina last March. The event will return in Winnipeg this spring and almost certainly be held in Edmonton the following year.

This season the league has added a ‘TSN-CFL Fantasy Football’ concept. A ‘PickEm’ prediction project launched last year and is up 44 per cent.

Thursday, the CFL launched ‘Football Frenzy’, a fast-paced shoot-out style arcade game available for download on mobile and tabloid devises aimed at a young (8-to-14) demographic.

And Saturday at Commonwealth Stadium, the latest initiative was launched.

It’s the first stop of a NFL-CFL flag football tournament featuring eight co-ed teams of 11-12 year-olds with the winner going to the Grey Cup in Ottawa and the winner of that proceeding to the NFL Pro Bowl in Orlando, Fla.

Early evidence is that the league’s effort to draw new fans and especially younger fans is working.

The league has never shared this before but their latest numbers in terms of reaching new and younger fans are suddenly solid, especially in the key 18-34 age group.

Ages 18-34 35-54 55+
CFL.ca 32% 39% 28%
Twitter 63% 18% 4%
Facebook 52% 31% 13%
Pick’Em 27% 46% 24%
Fantasy 35% 45% 19%

Attendance is up one per cent despite an empty stadium in Toronto and a 0-8 start to the season in Hamilton. TSN is down slightly.

“We’ve been going full force and so far we’re real happy with the initiatives. We are showing positive momentum on what we hoped but we have to keep our foot on the gas. We can’t rest on any of this,” Litz said.

Litz basically invented CFL Week.

Expectations were minimal but it became an overnight success story, essentially becoming a sort of second Grey Cup week for fans. It was especially popular with the 50 star CFL players flown in to Regina to basically be Brier Patch-accessible with the fans and interact with unprecedented accessibility with the media in this recent era of Football Ops taking over control of several teams in the league including, until this year, the Eskimos.

The event connected the CFL combine, TSN video shoot, Canadian Football Hall of Fame induction announcement with a Fan Fest involving other interaction components for young fans and a beer hall in the centre of it all.

“What we’re excited about is that the success of last year’s Mark’s CFL Week left us in a position to grow the event this year. We’ll certainly keep a lot of the base elements intact — the media access, the fan access to the players and all of those components that went over so well,” said Litz. “We’re going to tighten up the schedule to allow us to do the TSN shoot at the same time as the ‘Fan Fest’.”

‘Fantasy Football’ has been a hit. Sixty per cent of those playing TSN-CFL Fantasy are under the age of 44.

“The most exciting thing is we went from zero players to over 20,000 actively playing and from zero to millions and millions of impressions of media and fans talking about CFL Fantasy. It’s just something that as a modern sports league I think you now have to have,” said Litz.

There’s also the ‘Pick ‘Em’ game, a simple contest where participants select which team will win each game for a chance to claim weekly prizes.

“Now we have over 40,000 playing that one. That’s a great way for the casual fan who doesn’t know all the players to get involved playing,” said Litz.

Thursday the league launched ‘CFL Football Frenzy’

“It’s a mobile video game that you could play on your iPad or iPhone that is available free on the App Store with Android coming shortly. This is new ground for the CFL as we follow through on our strategy to reach younger audiences,” said Litz. “The game was built with age 8 to 14 in mind. Except we’re now phrasing it ‘the 8 to 14 at heart’ because there are so many people playing who are older than that. We did this with the CFLPA and so the players are involved in a cartoony fun sort of way and we discover from social media that some of our players were playing including Bo Levi Mitchell and others we discovered.

“We were delighted to wake up Friday morning and find out that we were No. 1 for kids in the apps store and No. 3 for sports games.”

In today’s world there has to be more involved in football than football to capture young fans. Christina Litz gets it.

elly63 Sep 25, 2017 2:41 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by TorontoDrew (Post 7932481)
I think you meant to post this advertisement over in the CFL thread.

No, I didn't mean that at all and as I see from your posts how big a CFL supporter you are I'm doubly glad you appreciated it. After all, this is The Great Canadian Sports Attendance, Marketing and TV Ratings Thread. Cue my buddy :)

TorontoDrew Sep 25, 2017 2:53 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by elly63 (Post 7932491)
No, I didn't mean that at all and as I see from your posts how big a CFL supporter you are I'm doubly glad you appreciated it. After all, this is The Great Canadian Sports Attendance, Marketing and TV Ratings Thread. Cue my buddy :)


It had zero to do with attendance.....that would be like me posting this saying it was good for attendance.

source: https://media.playstation.com
https://media.playstation.com/is/ima...oColumn_Image$


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