Abandon the crossover.
Discontinue the full interlocking schedule.
"Naturalize" international players after five seasons, making each national.
Annual all star game between defending champs and League team, possibly comprised of national players only.
Play Grey Cup in afternoon.
The reason to hold it in Montreal is to keep football alive there. What did Ottawa draw last year to the Grey Cup? It wasn't sixty thousand people, and didn't need to be. True, the Big Owe is a crap place to play football but the City of Montreal and the CFL need each other. It's a big shot in the arm for the East, which needs all the help it can get.
Television money is great, but what happens in ten years when no children are watching CFL because no one watched it growing up?
Afternoon Grey Cup is smart. Does Ambrosie have the courage to pull it off?
Also, 4 pre-season and 16 regular season games. Abandon crossover playoff format. Discontinue full interlocking schedule. Annual all star exhibition game versus Grey Cup champs.
And name the Maritime team the Kracken.
I'd love to see the Cup in the East, but where? Montreal doesn't have the facility, Hamilton won't bid until their legal battles are complete, Ottawa just hosted, Toronto was a totally mismanaged disaster and needs to work for a few years of re-establishing a draw locally. As far as the east feeling disenfranchised....um, they just hosted 2 years in a row.Hosting has been lopsided recently because of facilities, and once Hamilton is ready and the O as well it will make the cycle a lot better. If Montreal can do 30k in their stadium for NHL I would have to think a CFL game is less. Under 30k is starting to make it risky....there is a reason that the last time it was under 30000 was 60 years ago.
Exactly how is this smart? Why is it courage? If it was so smart it wouldn't take courage. On Sundays, "prime time" (the time when TV draws the highest viewing audiences) is 7pm Eastern. You are suggesting that it should be moved to when people don't prefer to watch TV as much. Should the Super Bowl also be moved? They seem to be doing alright in their time slot. How do you feel pubs will feel about a mid day game? A generation of children lost? Was the game historically held at noon or something, because surely the league would have collapsed years ago without catering the championship game to kids as opposed to moreso adults getting together.
16 regular season games? So who is pitching the idea of the players taking a pay cut to them?
Why do you want to abandon the crossover? So that teams can be more complacent? So that we can see a team with a 33% win record fighting for the championship?
Why is an interlocking schedule bad? There has been a lot of talk on here that playing the same team up to 4 times with exhibition is too much, now you are suggesting that it gets moved to 6 times in the east and 4 to 5 in the west...plus whatever in exhibition?
What is the draw on the all-star game? The probowl is complete garbage to the point there is a lot of discussion of cancelling it. When is this game going to be? Before the season when the GC Champions have already went through free agency and you are risking player injury before camp opens? I ask because I assume you don't want to have it after the GC when attention focuses on the NFL and people already complain about the cold in the CFL playoff run. Then there is the US players issue....No way do they want to be here for an extra couple weeks to risk going over the 6 month international period that would crush them tax wise.
Why naturalize the imports? I as this as one who moved here from the US. It is bad enough that players get in as nationals on technicalities. They better at least be getting their citizenship and living in Canada full time before this would ever be remotely considered. Pretty insulting to Canadians IMO.
Not big on the all star game idea. Images of flag football.
Weather played a big part in the Ottawa and Winnipeg Grey Cups. Offence suffered after the sun went down. Also no fun sitting outside in November at night and no where to go after the game which is a huge hit to the local business bunch. It's a big enough event that it doesn't need prime time to draw an audience and is logistically better to be played earlier in the day.
Agree with the other poster about the naturalize idea and the loopholes that are in the system being enough to say it would be an area to avoid.
There are a couple of pros to naturalizing internationals, especially if what counts is years of service on a given team. I mean if an international player plays five years for a team, he can then be counted as a national for that team (but not for other teams if he decides to move).
That would add to roster stability, allowing fans a better chance to connect with the players.
It would allow GMs greater flexibility in spreading out their national talent.
It would allow veteran American players the opportunity to earn higher wages by sticking with one team.
The con is that it could decrease the number of home-grown nationals on rosters, which would decrease interest in the game among some fans. However, I think the gains in fan interest from a more stable roster could more than offset that decrease.
I haven't thought through the details yet but I like the idea of naturalized players as long as it's done after meticulous clarification and not some haphazard knee jerk decision like the league is wont to do often.....
PTBO Dave said it right. You "naturalize" an American player, make him Canadian. Matt Dunigan, for example, might have played in the CFL as a Canadian, and he should have. He's given his life to Canadian football. Someone else mentioned Ron Lancaster. The CFL "adopts" these players, and makes room for more American talent on rosters without reducing Canadian content.
It is an old-fashioned idea, but it reflects progressive thinking and is totally in the League's best interests.
The Grey Cup in the afternoon is about reaching young children, and so is the All Star game. The CFL has become good at staging these "festival" sort of affairs, and there need to be more reasons to have them. The "CFL Caravan" comes to mind, from the nineties. It was a small group of prominent players - Clemons, Gizmo, Walby, and others - moving around the country and exposing new fans to the CFL. Ambrosie's cross-Canada tour was the same thing on a small scale.
Further, lunch boxes and bed sheets. Pencil sharpeners inside mini-helmets (if anyone still uses pencils?), whatever. Cereal boxes with players on. Team running shoes. Inflatable football guys were classic. The electronic buzzing football game. More hard copy news articles. Books.
We want an association with the CFL to provide STATUS. That's what people want most.