Crossover refinement popularity?

Got this idea to make the CFL even more attractive and it has to do with refining the crossover:

Let's assume the final 2021 west division standings are as follows and the 4th place finisher is record-wise better than the 3rd place finisher in the east...

1st Saskatchewan
2nd Winnipeg
3rd BC
4th Calgary
5th Edmonton

The process would consist of a 'yes' response from the team owner on whether they want to be the #3 seed in the east. The questioning would begin with the #2 west team and end with the #3 finisher if the questioning gets that far. If the #2 finisher says 'yes' they get to be the #3 seed in the east.

If Winnipeg says 'yes' they'll be the #3 east seed, and Calgary at BC in round 1.

If they say 'no', BC would be asked if they'd like to be the #3 seed. If they say 'yes' BC becomes the #3 seed in the east, and Calgary at Winnipeg in the first round.

If BC says 'no' Calgary becomes the #3 seed and the questioning ends with BC at Winnipeg in round 1.

I'm concerned teams should be rewarded with an easier bracket if the crossover is better. Would your team prefer to be the #3 seed in the east or play a first round game in the west to improve their chances of getting to the Grey Cup? Reward the team that did the proper sequence.

Your thoughts?

Home playoff games make money. No one will ever choose to go east. Besides, if you choose to go east what you're really telling that eastern opponent is that you think they're not as good, which will just get them fired up. Then think of the coaches/managers if they decide to go east and lose the fans and press will eat them alive.

Not saying it's a horrible idea but I really don't see it flying.


But think about it, if the questioning reaches the #3 finisher. The #3 finisher in the west has to be on the road either way as the #3 seed whether that's in the east or the west bracket.

One other thing and probably most important is this...if the crossover gets awarded to the west division with 2-3 games left in the regular season, and you have two teams in the west currently tied for 3rd place there's an incentive to do things that are undesirable.

Let's also assume there's only one team in the east that is any good for purposes of this example. There's probably going to be some finger pointing with the two 3rd place west teams agonizing if they win their last few games they're going to be penalized with being placed in the super strong west bracket.

I think the smack going around the league if a #2 or #3 west team gets to choose the east bracket makes for good TV and ratings. They'll be some media attention on that and that has to be good for the league. Whether the west team eats crow or wins out thru the east makes for a great story line and therefore more interest in following the league.

Considering there’s 9 teams in the league, there should only be 5 playoff spots. However, when dealing with 6 seeds and 4 in one division, I might just do 1 vs 4. I know that this punishes the 1 seed and let’s the other division rest for a week. We almost had a western Grey Cup in 2019. If it ever happened, I would worry about corporate support.

Sounds like a 'pick your opponent' type seeding which was floated during RA's last non virtual town hall tour pre-Covid and got grilled. Baseball was thinking of something similar.

If they make change to the format it will likely be division winners then seed 3-6 regardless of division

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I worry about corporate support when Toronto backs into the Grey Cup and wins it every 5 or 6 years by way of this ridiculous obsolete divisional system... and it does nothing for the profile of the league in big markets..

Make a more compelling league.. increase the number of regular season games that matter instead of this protracted preseason we currently call a regular season... make the championship a harder hill to climb and the profile of the league will be better off for it..


As for the topic at hand.. yes.. 4th in the West might sometimes have an easier playoff route than 3rd in the west thanks to the bandaid crossover rule and as is. Perhaps the higher seed team should have the choice of where it wants to play.

The easier, simpler thing would be to scrap the divisions and go to one league playoff seeding.

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Especially when they already had Winnipeg In the GC against a western opponent .

Winnipeg vs BC
vs Sask
vs Calgary
vs Edmonton

The league was fine .

It didn't change a thing the league still did well .

It should have compelled them to change the format to a more authentic , compelling story being told where the regular season games are more important to seeding than what exists today . No byes or home games unearned over teams with better records .

I am more worried they are waiting too long for changes and have missed the opportunity to move the league along .

The rivalry games will still be there every year and make them more sweeter when you don't play them so often .

I would be open to a one division league.

If there's a one division system then a neutral site Grey Cup may not be ideal (I know , it's not realistic as it's planning and coordination)

Finishing 1st overall should give them an opportunity to aleast hosting the final or which team has the better record.

Have it two weeks after the semis.

There's pre-planned locations for Grey Cups right now with the team hosting the Grey Cup capable of making it to the Grey Cup.

What do divisions (or no divisions) have to do with that?

If there were no divisions, you can still announce and plan for say Saskatchewan to host the next Grey Cup.

There's a history of putting Grey Cups in places where they weren't selling out (Vancouver 1990, 1999, 2014)

Montreal (1985) Toronto (1992).

Maybe it's just the major Canadian markets that are having trouble.

Hopefully Hamilton is able to sell out for the December Grey Cup.

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The grey cup is a festival not just the game itself ; it requires tons of preparation .

Cities are involved in the bidding then prep and planning

It was never meant to be a home advantage game for a team .

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There's pre-planned locations for Grey Cups right now with the team hosting the Grey Cup capable of making it to the Grey Cup.

What do divisions (or no divisions) have to do with that?

If there were no divisions, you can still announce and plan for say Saskatchewan to host the next Grey Cup.


EZ you have some interesting ideas on fixing the playoffs, my personal feeling is the playoffs aren't perfect, but far from the top issue the CFL needs to work on. COVID-19 protocol, insuring teams are financially viable, single game betting compliance, XFL USFL rebirth, attracting 1 to 3 new Canadian teams, attracting new fan base, some might add better commentators, new sponsorship $$, just to name a few. Long before they confuse and annoy the current fan base with a new playoff format.
A 10 team would go along way to make the playoffs better,11or 12 teams would be great not likely but great.

Placing greater emphasis on the divisions might go a ways to helping the teams financially. If each team played more games within its division, then travel costs would be greatly reduced.

It would also mean more viewers in the home markets would be able to watch their team play during primetime (i.e., fewer games for Eastern teams starting at 9:30 or 10 pm and running past midnight and fewer games for Western team starting at 5:30 pm when many people are still at work or commuting home).

They used to have a schedule like from 1961 to 1973. The West had a 16 game season while the East had a 14 game season.

Getting to 10 teams would help with the scheduling with a division weighted format.

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Agree, I believe $$ were the driving point for playing within your own division, being from Manitoba, I would suggest the start times didn't affect me as much, but an afternoon home Al's game would have me enjoying a couple wobble pops to soon, likewise a home game in BC sometimes I would finish the game early next morning. So that too is a great point. Also would likely generate larger amount of fans in the stands, rivalries

BTW thank you for all you do with the GCC, it's a lot of fun.


What is the worst crossover idea that you have ever heard?

…probably that time the Jetsons visited the Flintstones…


Fully agree with you.

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[quote="Capital_Dave, post:14, topic:72416"]
...If each team played more games within its division, then travel costs would be greatly reduced.[/quote]

The three teams in Ontario plus Montreal are ground transportation deals. Everyone else has to fly, correct?

The individual west division teams still have to fly because everyone opponent is too far for ground transportation?

Also, you might note, the eastern teams flyout to play a west team and stay out west, only to play a second west team in a row, before flying back home in the east (and vice versa). That's already being done, right?

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