CFL divisions playing for Final Two

The NCAA basketball fraternity won’t need the term ‘Final Four’ until the spring, so I hijacked it for the 2011 CFL division finals.

The NCAA basketball fraternity won’t need the term ‘Final Four’ until the spring, so I hijacked it for the 2011 CFL division finals.

This Sunday will mean that two more teams get to put their feet up after the game and watch the Grey Cup on TV. The question of the day is which two teams hit the showers after this weekend?

The early game pits the Winnipeg Blue Bombers against the Hamilton Tiger Cats in an Eastern Division showdown in a western Canadian city.

Typically, November in Winnipeg carries roughly the same level of joy found in a night at the opera without large amounts of alcohol to kill the pain, but a home playoff game has completely changed the November mood for Bomber fans.

The Bomber faithful will sell out their old stadium for the last time and then be rewarded for their loyalty with a team in the Grey Cup.

Winnipeg will win the game in much the same way that they won first place in the East — with a murderers’ row on defense.

Winnipeg has not exactly shot out the lights on offense this year.

They had more two and outs than any other team in the regular season, but the defense never rested, mainly because they thrived on mayhem and brutality. It was simply good honest work for the boys from Swaggerville.

Winnipeg brought a lot of pressure from the interior of the D-line all season and Sunday will mean more of the same for Hamilton’s quarterbacks. I will predict that both Ti-Cat pivots will see action this weekend, with a vengeful Kevin Glenn as the starter.

Glenn is a former Bomber quarterback with an axe to grind with his old team after they dumped him a few years ago during the Mike Kelly fiasco in the ‘Peg. Few of his old teammates have any sympathy for Glenn for one good reason — somebody has to lose the game and the Bombers will provide 12 good reasons on defense for Glenn to suffer a loss, painfully if necessary.

The West final will take place in the warm and friendly confines of the newly renovated B.C. Place on Sunday. The place has been a burial ground for visitors before and after the place got a huge facelift. Now it will showcase two more home games for the B.C. Lions after they win their game against the pesky Eskies and go to the Grey Cup.

The rebirth of the 2011 Lions ran parallel to the acquisition of veteran receiver Arland Bruce, a guy who brought a new attitude to the Leos.

The tandem of Geroy Simon and Bruce has opened up a big playbook for talented B.C. quarterback Travis Lulay. He has been able to rely upon them for clutch receptions at opportune times in the back nine of the regular season.

The Lion defense also has a big bite led by young linebacker (and future NFL star) Solomon Eliminium and veteran tackle Aaron Hunt.

The Lion defense will make life very difficult for Eskimo pivot Ricky Ray, a guy who was under serious fire from the Calgary defense last Sunday — and Stamp defensive pressure is not even close to the Lions’ pressure.

The absence of giant Eskimo tailback Jerome Messam won’t help matters for Ricky and his offense, but Ray does have talented receivers and the most accurate arm in the league, when he has time. The Eskimos’ pressure defense will keep this game closer than one might expect, however it’s still the Lions and Bombers in the Grey Cup. See you next week.

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Bloc Québécois MP Sebastien Lemire rises during question period in the House of Commons on Parliament Hill in Ottawa on Friday, March 12, 2021. A Bloc Québécois MP has apologized for taking a screen shot of a Liberal MP who inadvertently appeared nude during virtual proceedings in the House of Commons last week. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Sean Kilpatrick
Bloc Québécois MP apologizes for taking nude photo of Liberal MP William Amos

‘I have no idea how that photo made its way into the media’

FILE - This Sunday, June 25, 2017, file photo shows TK Holdings Inc. headquarters in Auburn Hills, Mich. A driver in South Carolina is the latest person to be killed by an exploding Takata air bag inflator. Honda says that a faulty driver’s air bag blew apart in a crash involving a 2002 Honda Accord in Lancaster County, South Carolina. The company wouldn’t give details of the Jan. 9, 2021, crash near Charlotte, North Carolina, nor would it identify the person who was killed. (AP Photo/Paul Sancya, File)
South Carolina driver killed by exploding air bag inflator

Drivers can check to see if their vehicles have been recalled

Hospital staff shift the body of a COVID-19 patient on a stretcher to a waiting ambulance at a specialized COVID-19 hospital in Noida, a suburb of New Delhi, India, Wednesday, April 21, 2021. (AP Photo/Altaf Qadri)
Low on beds, oxygen, India adds global high 314K virus cases

Government rushing oxygen tankers to replenish hospital supplies

A traveler wearing a protective mask, due to the COVID-19 outbreak, walks through the nearly empty JetBlue terminal at Logan Airport in Boston, Friday, May 29, 2020. THE CANADIAN PRESS/AP, Charles Krupa
JetBlue expanding wings with service to Vancouver from New York and Boston

JetBlue will have to compete with Canadian airlines

Green Party MP Elizabeth May arrives on Parliament Hill in Ottawa on Thursday, Sept. 24, 2020. An emergency parliamentary debate that was supposed to be a forum for cross-party collaboration on better ways to combat the COVID-19 pandemic has devolved into another round of partisan finger-pointing. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Sean Kilpatrick
Emergency parliamentary debate on pandemic devolves into partisan finger-pointing

‘Let’s work together instead of playing terrible politics in this debate’

Westerner Park’s Exhibition Hall was used as a vaccination clinic on Wednesday. A steady stream of people came to get their COVID-19 shots either by appointment or as walk-ins. Photo by PAUL COWLEY/Advocate staff
No long lineups at walk-in vaccination site in Red Deer

A steady stream of people walked into Westerner Park on Wednesday to… Continue reading

FILE - In this March 19, 2021, file photo, people take pictures of the Olympic rings installed by the Japan Olympic Museum in Tokyo. The vaccine rollout in Japan has been very slow with less than 1% vaccinated. This of course is spilling over to concerns about the postponed Tokyo Olympics that open in just over three months.(AP Photo/Hiro Komae, File)
Olympic bodies launch competitive series in virtual sports

Olympic body hopes to reach more young people

Linda Tomlinson
Gardening: Leave the lawn until the soil is dry

Spring is arriving, Alberta style with warm days, cold days and snow.… Continue reading

Silent protests were held recently in response to Red Deer Public Schools’ decision to reject a Pride Week in favour of a Diversity Week. Some former employees at Red Deer Public are saying the decision is misguided. (File photo by Advocate staff)
Letter: School board silencing Pride Week concern

While it has been our practice to not comment on matters arising… Continue reading

Anderson scores twice as Canadiens down Oilers 4-3

Anderson scores twice as Canadiens down Oilers 4-3

New York Liberty guard Kia Nurse (5) shoots next to Indiana Fever's Kamiah Smalls during the first half of a WNBA basketball game Thursday, Sept. 10, 2020, in Bradenton, Fla. Nurse isn't just one of Canada's finest female basketball players, she's becoming a popular voice of the game as well. THE CANADIAN PRESS/AP -Phelan M. Ebenhack
Canadian basketball star Nurse is carving out space in sports broadcasting at just 25

Canadian basketball star Nurse is carving out space in sports broadcasting at just 25

Most Read