WINNIPEG - For the first time in 16 years, I won’t be in my seat for the annual Banjo Bowl. Work commitments have taken me out of province and quite frankly, unless I stream it on my phone or iPad, I’m not sure I’ll be able to watch it. That’s because I’m in Southern Ontario, the place where the CFL is dead.
With the exception of about 25,000 die hard Ti-Cat fans, no one cares about the CFL out here. Not one sports bar or lounge I’ve been in since I arrived after attending the Labour Day Classic has an Argo sign or poster. No Tiger Cat merch anywhere. No “watch the CFL here” signs. In fact, when I asked what game they would be showing Saturday at a local pub near the campus of the University of Guelph, the 20 something bartender replied “all of them – all the big college games will be on our screens.” When I asked if they would put on a CFL game (as there are 3 today), he said, “I guess we could put one on for you, but I can’t promise you anything." Every bar has a NFL Sunday sign up with “be here to win prizes” posters.
Side note – not one TV had the Argos/Ti-Cats game on last night; Hamilton called Guelph home for the 2013 season while Tim Hortons Field was being built.
Anyway, I will scramble to watch this afternoon’s game, somewhere. I expect another dominant performance by the Bomber defense. Saskatchewan’s first road game of 2021 will be met with almost 33,000 screaming Blue Bomber fans. The Roughriders have indicated that they will run the ball more today, but with Adam Bighill and Willie Jefferson swarming around, I can’t see that being effective. Winnipeg’s offense found it’s groove after half time last week, expect more of the same early. The Blue Bombers won 2019’s game 35-10, expect a bigger win today.