CFL Expansion Teams by 2012 or beyond???

I was listening to the radio the other day while stuck in traffic in the Toronto area what else is new and the show hosts were talking about the CFL and the Argo’s, coaching staff etc. and the Ottawa situation and about the possibility of new expansion teams in the CFL by 2012??

Ottawa was front and center with the hope that finally they will get good strong local ownership together and a new stadium to play in, apparently a downsized version of Landsdown Park and the talk about the up coming Atlantic game in late September in Moncton, New Brunswick between the Argo’s and Eskies. I think it’s great, and would love to see the CFL expand further to include an Atlantic Division that could include

The Atlantic, Moncton, Halifax, Quebec City and Montreal.

The East would be Ottawa, Toronto, Hamilton, Winnipeg

The West would be Sask, Calgary, Edmonton, BC

I think this could be a great victory for the CFL marketing if they could truly build a coast to coast Canadian game and create some excitement through local rivalries and new ownership groups. Each one of the new expansion cities mentioned has a football stadium that could be added on to or built to house an expansion franchise, just look at what Montreal did by moving to McGill Stadium and the excitement that was built around that franchise and of course the great job that was done by Bob Young and his team in Hamilton. I hope for the continued success of the CFL that we see expansion to the Atlantic in the future and hopefully not the distant future but more like 2012 or 2014??

I'd give that a nudge until 2020. At minimun, and by todays standards, you'll need about $75m to put up a meet-the-standard stadium. Since any CFL team would be orgasmic with a $1m windfall each year, it would take a whole lotta financing to make those endeavours even possible -- let alone worthwhile.

So, until the governments are a bit more flush with cash, I can't see major handouts for stadiums -- which is what will be required. I think a strong 10 team league would be the ideal situation.

However, no reason why we can't think big. And, in that case, then a 3 division league (with some kind of wildcard format for playoffs) would be cool.

When the CFL (FINALLY) expands in the Maritimes, there'll only be one club. It could be a regional franchise, like Sask.

There just isn't the population in the east for more than that. Remember, Halifax-Dartmouth is about the same size as Hamilton. PEI has about 140 000 people, the size of Burlington. The three biggest NB towns could fit into Mississauga.

Sounds like it would be like having a team in Sudbury

CFL needs a Division 1 and Division 2 where cities could get pro football in stadiums of 20k and go from there. Each year you could have one or two games between the weakest div 1 teams and the better div 2 teams. You could also allow div 1 teams to lend players to div. 2 teams. All teams would share marketing and other logistics (officials, tv deals, sponsors).

Could look like this.

Div 1
Current teams plus Ottawa

Div 2
Saskatoon, Quebec City, London,Moncton,Halifax,

I suppose we all entitled to our opinions and dreams, but I think expansion to 12 teams with two in the Atlantic provinces is a bit of a stretch, and one not likely to happen all too soon. I just don't see there being enough population to support a team in both Halifax and Moncton.

I'm not going to profess to be an expert on the Maritime provinces, but from a geographic point of view, if a franchise were to be put in this area Moncton would make the most sense, because it is located centrally to Halifax, St. John, Fredericton, and Charlottetown, even though Halifax is a larger centre, and I believe it has the biggest football facility in place.

As far as any expansion goes, we have to take it one step at a time. The next step being Ottawa. After that, I really think it would be best to look at Quebec City, where football is extremely hot. Once teams are firmly established in these cities, the CFL could consider moving into a location in a Maritime centre, or possibly a team in London, or even another team out West.

While this all seems like a nice plan from a spectators point of view, the most important requirement for expansion is finding owners who are willing to invest in a team, and continuing to grow the CFL to the point that it attracts enough money to support the expansion. Expansion also cannot go forward unless the existing franchises are stable. If not, the league will lose money bailing out failed expansions, as has happened in the past.

Currently, the league appears to be having difficulty attracting a legitimate owner in Toronto, along with stable support for the product in that location. It's hard to believe that considering the size of the market, and the amount of wealth in the city of Toronto and the surrounding area. That's really a whole other topic, but if the league can't get it together in Toronto, how can they realistically expect to expand?

I would like to see the CFL expand to a slightly larger size, and it would be nice to span the entire country. There is not much doubt in my mind that fans in Quebec and the Maritimes would support teams, but to do it right, expansion can only be done slowly, and can't be done unless existing franchises are stable.

Let's hope the CFL continues to stay healthy. If it does, over time it certainly has the opportunity to grow and cover a more national landscape.


Yay, another expansion thread!

I can't see the league adding another team until they know stability has been brought to the new franchise, as well as Toronto and Winnipeg. Toronto is in shambles right now, new coach, new GM and likely new ownership and worst in the league. Winnipeg is still recovering from Mike Kelly who probably hurt some of the team's fanbase and also now have a new coach and new GM. Also given that we still aren't quite over the recession hump yet to bring in the sponsorship revenue for a new team.

That all being said, I do want the league to expand, and I would love to see a 10 team league by 2020. Quebec City would of course be the first logical choice. Already a big Football town, plenty of people, instant rivalry with the Alouettes, lets the Al's have their classic with Ottawa again and keeps (in a sense) the BC coast to coast rivalry, it's perfect.

From there, I think the CFL can realistically get 12 teams when everything is said and done. One on the East Coast and one other team and the other, likely Windsor or London. There just aren't enough major cities, that aren't in very close proximity of each other to really push more teams then that.

Yeah, yeah chicken or egg. To all those who “professe” to know everything about business. The reason the Argos are in the situation they are in is because there is no other city or stadium in Canada capable of housing a CFL team. If there was your would see them relocated pretty darn quick.

They can’t find an owner for the Argos because they don’t have any control over their location and by extension their cost and revenues. So you need to find someone who is prepared to lose 2 to 5 million dollars every year !
Even Braley’s takeover is with temporary intent.

Lack of adequate facilities is probably the biggest menace to the league right now. Not only does it prevent the league from growing, Hamilton, Saskatchewan,Winnipeg, Toronto have decrepit facilities or landlord with intent to kill their CFL tenant. That’s half the league !

Whats an adequate facility ????
to me its 2 things ..the lease and the fanbase ... sure when the team is winning and the fans are there more money rolling in and the stadium or the lease is not a problem .. the team starts doing poorly and no one shows up the lease then becomes a problem ........

It's all back to fanbase ... i don't know how the people out east feel about the CFL ..but without a solid fanbase there is nothing... adequate facility or not!!!

Look at the leafs ... not a good team has not been good for years and still have a great draw at the gate ..thats a fanbase they are not going anywhere ...

It sucks for the hardcore fans .. but if the league cannot figure out how to bring in the fans .. (the ones not on these boards)
then nothing will get fixed ...

so i cannot see how an adequate facility will fix it ... a high priced lease will be a problem ... but the fanbase is the ONLY problem this league has

Expansion is Waist of Time and Money ....

The League can't keep owners in Ottawa Folded 2 times

Toronto can't stay a Float and is Sinking in Debt

Even Hamilton had Issues Till Bob Young Came Along ..
If you lose Toronto Hamilton could be in Trouble ..

Till the CFL can keep all Teams out of Red there no Point to Expansion
Keep what have don't worry about adding Teams when your house is not in Order..
I would even back away from Ottawa for now.

looks like Hamilton and Toronto has just about swapped places .... wasn't too long ago argos were doing well ..grey cups great QB blah blah no worries .... now they have a not so good team and everyone is crying how poor they are doing ...
Hamilton went thru all that .. and bounced back a lil .. we almost lost them on more than 1 occasion

like i said tho Fan Base .....

Its not strong enough up there in Canada ... think it will always rotate around like that .. wonder why the west seems so strong with support and the east just sucks for fans ...fix that riddle and you'll help the CFL succeed

A string of two or three years (over the past two decades) where Hamilton and Toronto were actually competitive together would probably have made a world of difference in this region. Alas, this uphill climb to find Argos owners and to solidify fan bases is partially the result of one team, or the other, being utter embarrassments to the game.


I am in full agreement with your 3 division plan.
We need to do whatever it takes to get Montreal out of the East so we can have a fighting chance to win the division. :thup:

Moncton being the hub would be a good site for a CFL city in this region.jonesie you are right the area cannot support two teams, it would be nice, but there is no way.I live in Grand Bay just outside Saint John who have the Seadogs of the QMJHL and they draw between 3@ 4 thousand a game.That may be good for jr hockey but not CFL.So the fan base will have to be pulled from the whole area.The U.S. border is an around three hours from Moncton , I don't know if they would come to see CFL football but it is something an owner could keep in mind.Quebec sounds like a good choice also,though when I watched a game on TV last year they said the stadium did not have lights, something I'm sure can be installed.It is something to talk about during these long winter days waiting for the first kick off of the season.

we need to put a team in Victoria BC. there is the population to support this and it is not easy to get to Vancouver by ferry to see the Lions. :rockin:

The CFL needs to find an owner for each of its existing franchises before they worry about expansion. Sounds like a Bettman plan

Where is Boots Del Biaggio when you really need him? :lol:

Seriously though,there is a wonderful article at the CFL website regarding David Braley and his many charitable works. It is a great read for those of us who follow Canadian football. :smiley:

Pat Lynch(the old guy in section 7)

How is this for a future CFL look? Jim Balsille Builds his own stadium in Kitchener then buys the Argos from Mr.Braley and moves them to Kitchener-Waterloo.They begin playing the same season as the new Ottawa franchise.As usual though all the media will talk about is how can the CFL survive without Toronto? Rogers than gets it's dream a lame duck NFL team moves to Toronto and everyone proclaims the death of the CFL.The CFL then announces with the success of it's Touchdown Atlantic series an expansion community owned franchise for Moncton. The Cfl is now a coast to coast league! The combination of Canadian pride against the American invader coupled with a horrible nfl team that no free agent will sign with ie the Blue Jays will make the CFL stronger than ever.If the NFL lives without LA the CFL can live and thrive without TO!

You need to put that funny smelling green stuff away .....

We have many, MANY, Multi-Millionaires in Canadian Business who could easily step into an ownership position in the CFL from Coast to Coast and truly make this a Canadian game from the Atlantic to the Pacific, I mentioned only a four possibilities in Moncton, Halifax, Ottawa and Quebec City also add Windsor, London and Victoria BC. Each city has it's own group of high rollers who could easily step in and fund a team but that's not the problem from what I understand after speaking to an insider with the CFL. The problem is, is that the CFL has lacked any marketing initiative to any outside city than were they are already playing or targeting to play like Ottawa, in other words A Huge Lack of Vision, A lack of vision required to expand this league not down south to the USA but right here in Canada, No one has tried it, not even the CFL management and executive and that's the problem, pretty soon the entire CFL except for Hamilton will probably be owned by David Braley anyway????