ahaha you guys crack me up.
People in Buffalo don't go to NFL games; why would they go to CFL games?
If they did it, Baltimore would be the better choice for a city, but the stadium issue is a problem.
I say why bother? Even if it were to be an enormous success, and prove to the people in the States that the CFL is a better game, what would it prove to people in Canada? CFL fans don't need a stamp of approval from the USA to tell us how great our game is.
I'd go to a game in Buffalo in a second if the Cats played an ex game at the Ralph. Who cares about the size of the field, I don't.
Right on BigDave. It simply doesn't matter. Though I would love to be able to watch CFL games on TV again, and I think it is good for football if the CFL can at least be seen regularly in U.S. and elsewhere. It the States though, our freedom of choice when it comes to TV programming is very limited.
Whether we like it or not, the CFL is considered a minor league here in the United States. Living here in the US, it's not easy to explain to Americans about the CFL and its history. They just don't care! I actually attended games in Baltimore, Shreveport, and Memphis. I believe there were only 200 or so people in the massive Liberty Bowl Stadium in Memphis. They just could not care about the game. In Shreveport, there were barely any fans as well. However, they at least tried lawsuit to keep the Pirates there. Baltimore was different though. I believe they were trying to send a message to the NFL the whole time, and it worked!
If it is able to get some CFL games aired on ESPN or ABC to expand the popularity into the US, then I would be for it. As an American, it would be pointless to experiment the CFL in the United States and I wouldn't want to see another American team in the CFL.
The way it should be done is go back into the past and have an CFL All-Star Game but this time have two of them, one in Canada and one in the United States. Test it out on a four-year trial, see how people respond to the coverage, and if it works, it could lead to more of a mass market demand for Canadian Football.
If you get the NFL involved, then it would be seen as the CFL trying to go back in the United States again. The idea would backfire.
Places like Baltimore, Detroit, San Antonio, and Minneapolis that have some Canadian influence or have had CFL franchises would be great places to look into.
Just my two cents.
As an American who loves football in all its different forms, I think at least some of you are missing some points here.
1st, to play in Buffalo with the goal being merely to "get even" is a ludicrous idea. While many Canadian fans view the NFL's desire for the Bills to play some games in Toronto as a very serious threat to the CFL in general & to the Argonauts in particular, the reverse of this situation would probably be met with yawning indifference by the NFL and many American fans. If the Tiger-cats or the Argonauts played a game at Rich Stadium (or "Ralph Wilson" or "new sell-out corporate name yet to be determined", if you prefer) the best thing they could do is play each other; in the hopes that a lot of local fans of each club will make their way down the QEW & across the Peace Bridge to attend it. Playing in the USA is a smart idea if approached not out of mis-guided spite, but as a legitimate opportunity to sell the game and the league to a market that might be receptive to it & will show genuine interest. Trying to piss the Buffalo fans off, who are edgy enough I'm sure about Ralph Wilson being 90 & the team being sold upon his death, (probably to Los Angeles interests so relax up there!) isnt the best place to start.
Retrievil states that the "US Experiment" failed, a view that I think many Canadian CFL fans agree with & are even short sightedly happy about. I think the CFL's 90's expansion to the USA was amazingly ill-conceived, out of a desire to rake in some quick & easy expansion fees. Planning of this experiment, if there was any at all, bordered on the non-existent. The American cities involved were all very far from Canada in Southern & Western cities with no affinity for Canada at all, no sense of familiarity or of being neighbors. This is a sense I can tell you is very well developed in Ohio, my home state; where people vacation, honeymoon & fish in Canada all the time. It's also even stronger in places like Michigan & New York, where Canadian TV can be seen, & the CFL & Canada are things that are familiar.
My point here is that expansion to the USA could have been a wild success in every city it was done in, not just the fluke of Baltimore trying to prove to the NFL that it could & would support a team if given another chance. By expanding into cities & areas only close enough to Canada to have an affinity for it, the CFL would have had a much better chance to grow support for its game, and with that get a lucrative TV deal of some sort in the bordering states (to start with at least, grow that out farther with time)
Cities like Rochester NY, Spokane WA, Fargo-Moorhead ND-Minn, Portland Maine, maybe Anchorage Alaska, all of which have no current professional major league sports would/could probably have a genuine fanaticism ala' Saskatchewan for a CFL team, if an expansion was handled right & marketed well. (Please dont bring up the "Import Quota". Seek a Trade Exemption for all teams US and Canadian alike to have even playing conditions roster wise. Nations do this kind of thing all the time.)
Whatever else you want to say about it, growing interest in the game anywhere you can is a good thing. Maybe the fans dont think so, but I can guarantee you the owners & Commissioner do.(Or should, if they are smart.) Money talks, wherever it comes from. If I can sell CFL merchandise in quantity in the States, or get a TV contract from there that lines my pockets as an owner with more $$, I'd have to be insane to say no to that. The NFL wants to grow interest in IT'S game in Canada, in Mexico, in Europe, in South America, in Asia, wherever it can. One day there will probably be Penguins in Antarctica sporting "Duluth Eskimos" Classic NFL Sweatshirts or jersies.
Meanwhile, accessible CFL TV in the USA, (which failed back in the 1950's because people got tired of watching the "Big Four" Eastern teams play each other all the time. NBC's TV deal, signed at the height of the Canada-NFL playing signing war, was only with the "Big Four" which was Hamilton Toronto Montreal and Ottawa.) is virtually non-existent. Today there are 8 teams in the league with 1 more coming; the old "all the teams are called the Rough Riders" joke that I just heard an announcer on ESPN radio say in all seriousness! the OTHER DAY to diss the league isnt even valid any more, & hasnt been for a long time. Isnt it about time that people outside Canada KNEW that?
I think the league should do whatever it could to sell the game anywhere it can. The logical place to start is in the massive market right next door. You dont have to sell out your game to do that. It's gotta beat the 24 years & still counting wait for someone with money, be it a corporation, an individual or a community group, to decide that a CFL team in Halifax, or anywhere besides Ottawa or Montreal is a viable business opportunity. The League hasnt expanded to a new Canadian city since 1954. Its time to do something smart to try and grow interest in the game.