CFL and High School Football should be working together

The CFL should get more involved with High School Football. A deal should be made to switch all senior high school teams to Canadian rules. Just the Seniors sothat the younger kids can still have 4 downs to learn with. Same field size so not to cost the schools field maintenance money..just a simple 3 down change with 1 more player added with the motion. Easy. And has to be done if the child is moving to Canadian collage anyways. Yes we sacrifice the very very few who are going to US collages but we are helping our bigger number of kids who are attending Canadian Collages. By getting more involved and asking the Canadian schools to switch, the CFL should be offering a Canadian National High School Championship Package. Where every Provincial High School Champion is flown to and put up all expenses to play a playoff game vs the nearest provincial champion and so on till they have the Final game or Championship. All games being played right before a CFL game at the same stadium. Rotating home games every year. Each Province already plays down to a provincial continuing on from there is really very little expense in the grand scheme of things. Cheaper than pre-season CFL games. We are actually only talking about 7 games total where most of the teams will be a home team playing in their home city so really your looking at only 7-10 team flights/hotels/meals. Minimal cost considering the Advertising revenue and future fans gained from holding this event. How good would the CFL look in the eyes of every high school football player....

That being said....Canadian Collage Finals : The Vanier Cup: The CFL needs to be more involved. Playing the Vanier Cup the day before the Grey Cup and in the same building (BC Place) was brilliant. Why they moved away from that was absolutelyidiotic. Bring that back at what ever the cost.

Huge block of text... please break down your paragraphs... No more than ten lines... hard to read... thank you.

I totally agree. The CFL needs to have a closer cooperation with all levels of football. One suggestion is for highschool and younger, have a ticket offer where 50% of sales to football teams would go to the team itself. Great way to get kids in to watch our game and help fund an already expensive sport.

This is an area where the commissioner can really give a push and get the next generation of fans involved.

Nissan has been supporting high school thru the CFL with fields and equipment .

Great way to get the money that football requires to keep going .

As far as I know, BC is the only province where high school ball is 100% 4 down (and NFHS rules to boot) and on that point we agree but the Lions could lead that charge to change if they really wanted to...they do support HS ball and know full well it's US rules but they continue tofundit.

There are other places in Canada where HS ball is 4 down, but in most cases it's Cdn rules with a 4th down added...which I guess isn't a big deal.

I also agree with the teaming up of the Vanier and Grey happened in 2007 in Toronto as well and was a great success.

The issue to me isn't 4 down or 3 down or what have you. The issue, at least in Ontario, is high schools keeping gridiron football as part of their sports programs. Who cares how many downs if there isn't a team to begin with, or maybe even a league in the not so distant future, no high school football at all in some localities. :-\

Hey, the Grey Cup can be played and won and fought for on an American field and with 3 downs etc. all American rules when it comes down to it as far as I'm concerned. It's the Grey Cup Gridiron championship of Canada any way you cut the mustard.

Maybe all Canadian high school football should go to American rules to just keep the game active at that level, who knows...

But you felt it was necessary to quote it? ;D

Um... yeah... crossed my mind after as well. Thought whatever so let it go.

One thing in the OP, I know Ontario does not play down to a provincial champion. There are 5 or 6 bowl games at the end of the season.

Each board has their own rules, but the bowl games are Canadian 3 down rules. When I played, I preferred the rules in the city. Mostly Canadian rules but 4 downs and lined up on the line of scrimmage. There are so many rushing plays in HS the fourth down seemed to create some parity.

Agreed, the GC and VC should be on the same weekend in the same stadium.

Ontario is up to 9 bowl games now ... and from what I know the entire province plays three down at the senior levels. Could be wrong about some leagues.

Programs shutting down are plaguing Ontario, it's the story nobody wants to talk about because it's not a good sign for our game. Unfortunately not many solutions either other than transitioning to 9-man or 6-man football, and a lot of coaches/players don't want to invest their time in starting new with a totally different set of rules.

Top end of high school football in Canada is thriving, but we're losing more programs every single year. Every CFL team does a ton in their community to help promote the high school game, but maybe a league wide initiative is needed with some solid game planning to help salvage the game in these dead areas that're struggling.

Same goes for U Sports, there's so much wasted potential with that brand, and I feel like it's in the CFL's best interest to create a buzz around U Sports prospects coming into their league. They're doing a better job now, but there's just so much left to be desired when it comes to amateur football in Canada.

Did some searching and noticed this article and while it does mention football, the article is mainly about gymnastics having problems at the high school level with safety and liability a big issue. Not just football having issues:

Cartwheeling into oblivion

Once prominent in Toronto high schools, the pommel horse, balance beam and parallel bars — each used to teach gymnastics — have already gone the way of the dinosaur. Soon, the sport may disappear from Ontario schools altogether.

In addition to the missing equipment, which was yanked from schools in the 1990s, there are other problems facing school gymnastics. There’s not much interest in teaching the sport, which was very popular back in the 1960s. There’s also a lack of qualified coaches and ongoing concerns about safety and liability. …

Toronto District School Board athletic coordinator Chick Kennedy said coaching and safety matters likely led to the demise of the sport in the city but Riverdale teacher Trung Duong believes teachers are not comfortable in devoting time to the sport.

“People would rather not take risks,? he said, indicating that Riverdale no longer offers football and wrestling. “Frisbee is up, so too is table tennis. It’s just the culture of our society.?

I do see 9 man football as the way to go . With three downs and more room it will help the younger one's adjust with some offence . Plus you won't need as many players to form teams .

It has worked and they actually got more kids interested as a result .

Football is expensive but with equipment supplied it is more accessible than hockey .

As a Canadian and former high school football player and current minor coach and referee, it bothers me that some jurisdictions choose to play 4 down football. We're in Canada, we should play by Canadian rules! The only exception should be for international tournaments, which are played by American rules.

For some areas maybe 4 downs is the preference for whatever reason ie. players looking for a US scholarship can say to recruiters they play 4 downs and therefore familiar with it. In which case playing American rules would be a definite bonus I would think.

In the USA if somebody suggested their game be changed to a better format, 3 down ball, the POTUS would tweet. Traitor! Send that fool back to where he came from! There is no room in this country for people with such crazy ideas! We jail resisters in this country!

Huh?! Where in Canada do high schools play football with largely American rules?


That's an offence meriting expulsion from Confederation in my book. At bare minimum these high schools should immediately lose any and all taxpayer funding.


The extra down is no big deal. It's all that other stuff from the American game that makes it completely intolerable!


I really don't understand why the organizers don't twin the Vanier Cup Game with the Grey Cup every year and make it part of the Grey Cup Festival. When you have tens of thousands of rabid Canadian football fans in the same locale looking for a diversion/entertainment the day before the big game, why not take full advantage of the situation and give them another big game to attend? I mean they need a break from checking out the local strip clubs, do they not?


That's the way I feel about American football supporters in Canada. Miserable traitors!


No, no, no, never! If American football rules were adopted in Canada and by the CFL, the CFL would just become a minor league to the NFL! What the CFL is right now is major league Canadian football.

So long as our game is distinctly different to the game played in the States, the CFL cannot be said to be a minor league to the NFL. Quite simply, when it's a different game one can't be said to be a minor league to the other just as the best softball/fastball leagues cannot be said to be minor leagues for MLB. They're just something else.

And we need to fight to preserve our distinctiveness in Canada against the forces of American cultural imperialism - particularly their football!


That's crazy. It can't be done. Quite simply every province does not play down to a provincial champion. Ontario is one that does not quite simply because there are too many schools. Look at all the 2017 bowl games that were played between Ontario schools who had already beaten at least one team outside their city conference:

Monday - November 27
Game # 1 @ 10:00 - Independent Bowl - (
Hamilton Cardinal Newman 18 @ Toronto St. Michael's 21
Game # 2 @ 1:00 - Eastern Bowl - (
Peterborough Crestwood 23 @ Courtice Holy Trinity 28
Game # 3 @ 4:00 - National Capital Bowl - (
Innisfil Nantyr Shores 10 @ Arnprior 28

[u][b]Tuesday - November 28[/b][/u] [b]Game # 1 @ 10:00 - Central Bowl - ([url=][/url])[/b] [b][b]Mississauga Lorne Park 29[/b] @ Cambridge Jacob Hespeler 25[/b] [b]Game # 2 @ 1:00 - Metro Bowl - (Cable 14 - Hamilton [url=][/url])[/b] [b]Etobicoke Michael Power-St. Joseph 0 @ [b]Richview 52[/b][/b] [b]Game # 3 @ 4:00 - Western Bowl - (Cable 14 - Hamilton [url=][/url]) [/b][b]London South 17 @ [b]Windsor Holy Names 21[/b][/b] [b]Game # 4 @ 7:00 - Golden Horseshoe Bowl - (Cable 14 - Hamilton [url=][/url])[/b] [b]Hamilton St. Thomas More 57 @ Welland Notre Dame 7[/b]
[u][b]Wednesday - November 29[/b][/u] [b]Game # 1 @ 11:00 - Northern Bowl - ([url=][/url])[/b] [b]North Bay West Ferris 14 @ Thunder Bay Sir Winston Churchill 36[/b] [b]Game # 2 @ 2:00 - Simcoe Bowl - ([url=][/url])[/b] [b]Newmarket Huron Heights 40 @ Ottawa St. Matthew's 6[/b]

The high school football season would need to be extended to late January for a Canadian champion to be determined.