A Beer with Randy Ambrosie, 10 Questions

Great stuff in here

Thanks for sharing Grover, super read!

Thanks Grover. I really enjoyed reading that article. The guy exudes confidence. It great reading about the possibilities of a 10th team representing the Atlantic provinces. That would be awesome!

Very interesting that he refers to the potential Halifax team as belonging to the region and uses Saskatchewan Roughriders (community owned) as the example. BC Lions represent the entire province of BC but are privately owned - and he noticeably didn't mention them.

I'm thinking the ownership group being discussed is developing a stadium, and the team might not be (solely) theirs. I think community ownership would be a very good thing for CFL expansion into Halifax and region as it ensures more stability than a private owner - who may not stick around during lean years.

Randy is exactly the league has needed for a very long time. He can relate to the business needs of the owners but the Players and the CFLPA now has a partner that looks them in the eye and isn't out to skrew them over but instead cares about them. It will be very interesting to see how Randy manages the next bargaining agreement.

Clearly you're not understanding why the comparison is being made with Saskatchewan and the Roughriders.

Ambrosie:

“This will not be a team that belongs to a city, this will be a team that belongs to an entire region, it would be embraced by the entirety of the Atlantic region. Much as it is not the Regina Roughriders, it is the Saskatchewan Roughriders.”

Obviously we don’t know very much about this potential new team, other than possible ownership group involvement and their involvement in what exactly - we don’t yet know. Ambrosie speaks of whom it would belong to and he speaks of a region embracing the team. Maybe the team itself could be a P3? Saskatchewan Roughriders essentially have always been a public/private partnership of sorts. Well before P3s became fashionable.

P3 Definition:
A public-private partnership (P3) is a contractual arrangement between a public agency (federal, state or local) and a private sector entity. Through this agreement, the skills and assets of each sector (public and private) are shared in delivering a service or facility for the use of the general public.

That's what I got from that article. He's not going to rush into expansion just to have a team, business side is important. At the same time, unlike some of the recent puppets that have occupied his seat, he is aware there is a game involved here and speaks about the delicate balance required between the two to keep the league alive.

So far I'm impressed. Let's hope we see some changes over the upcoming business season.

University of Manitoba Bison Football Alumni. Guaranteed to be a man of integrity!

Go HERD!

Randy is understandingly sheepish about CTE, aka concussion consequences! He's been ordered by CFL lawyers to never admit football play can cause concussions and these concussions lead to long-term health consequences.

The reasons are obvious. Liability. Liability. Liability.

Randy is under strict orders to kick the can forward as long as he can. Of this there is no doubt.

While he's a total rounder discussing almost any issue under the sun including the American president as it relates to the NFL - he's a tightly closed book on the issue of concussions!

I like and hope the guy does good for the league but he sure sounded like a politician when he was trying to skirt the concussion issue.

His talk is what you would expect, but he has taken action. They switched to no contact practices this season. That is a start and he's the first commish to do ANYTHING about the issue.

Now if we can just confirm his concussion. The only reason he would float such a dumb idea like moving the entire schedule back by a month.

For good reason though. As Seth Wickersham from ESPN mentions in this recent PBS newsclip, the NFL is mired in litigation over the CTE suit from former players so this issue hasn't been resolved and it's wide open.

NFL ratings drop in a tumultuous year for football. Why?

As well, this fairly recent systematic review, which represents the highest level of evidence in Evidence Based Medicine for the most part, states after the analysis:

We conclude that the incidence of CTE remains unknown due to the lack of large, longitudinal studies. Furthermore, the neuropathological and clinical findings related to CTE overlap with many common neurodegenerative diseases. Our review reveals significant limitations of the current CTE case reporting and questions the widespread existence of CTE in contact sports.
Source: Maroon JC, Winkelman R, Bost J, Amos A, Mathyssek C, Miele V. Chronic traumatic encephalopathy in contact sports: a systematic review of all reported pathological cases. PLoS One. 2015 Feb 11;10(2):e0117338. doi: 10.1371/journal.pone.0117338. eCollection 2015. Review. Erratum in: PLoS One. 2015;10(6):e0130507. PubMed PMID: 25671598; PubMed Central PMCID: PMC4324991. - https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/25671598

Why are we only worried about CTE in pro players? They have insurance, they clearly know the risks, they CHOOSE to play a very physically demanding sport with lots of head contact. Nobody is trying to hurt them, in fact the opposite happens where industry and equipment makers are working hard every day to reduce risk even further. Sometimes I’m not so sure there is a genuine victim here. I think back to the maimed workers and hearing impaired workers in various industries who retire with lifelong ailments and chalk it up to part of life. They ignored warnings and safety protocols or worked in loud and harsh environments for decades and as a result have been impacted. But they’re not being placed on a pedestal as a victim of their choices.

Should I be legally pursuing the league where my son was playing in and was concussed and temporarily paralyzed after a vicious collision? Of course not. Even tho he may be affected for life, who knows?

The CTE thing in pro football is more about money than it is about safety. If the pro leagues admit there are the problem, they may as well light a mountain of money on fire.

The CTE thing in pro football is more about money than it is about safety. If the pro leagues admit there are the problem, they may as well light a mountain of money on fire.
Agree Iconic. And you don't admit a problem when it is well known that the evidence, high level evidence that is, is very murky and far from complete from a medical studies aspect.

If CFL lawyers taking the view deny deny deny about CTE, I humbly disagree with their advice as outdated, as the NFL lawyers also must have eventually concluded. If he thinks his opinion on medical research is worth sharing, I would really like to hear Mr. Ambrosie's views on global warming, the veracity of the moon landings by NASA, and the age of the earth.