Expansion team in Saskatoon

News out of the CFL Congress in Regina came talks about an expansion team in Saskatoon.
Everyone knows that the Province of Saskatchewan is the Mecca of the Canadian Football League.
The CFL and not the NHL rules the province. My perception is that they are not just Roughrider fans but Canadian Football League Super Fans.
Take the annual CFL congress for instance. Usually comes and goes without a any coverage but the sports Cage made it big news in Saskatchewan. The Sports Cage fanbase reaches well outside Regina with a huge following in Saskatoon, Why ? they are taking CFL.
Prince Albert is North of Saskatoon and the 35,000 plus population would most likely make the drive to Saskatoon for a game where as they may not to Regina. I imagine that some from Prince Albert would make the trek to Regina but most likely a lot more would go to Saskatoon not affecting the Riders fanbase
In listening to the Sports Cage today the sense is that they are all for it and that it would work. Marc Mueller, former Rams QB, made a point that when Regina Rams visit U of S there are 10 to 12 thousand fans in attendance.
Griffiths stadium has just been upgraded and appears to have the space to expand seating to CFL standards.
A carefully planned out schedule could make it so the two franchises do not play at the same time for TV purposes or not at home for the same week or at least the same day so fans who always make the trip to Regina from Saskatoon can also take in their new home team in Saskatoon. Why would they do both? because they are CFL fans.

On the respect I have for those who are part of the sports cage line up of characters I voted yes. I don't think it would take away much if any fans away form the Riders. I suspect that football fans would have season tickets to both who may be centrally located or from Saskatoon. The Population that live to the North of Saskatoon like Prince Albert would be Saskatoon.

One thing I think that no one has thought of would be to put the Saskatoon franchise in the East conference and move Winnipeg back to the West. With a 10 team league each team would play each other twice a season so it would not affect travel as it would be the same for ever one. This will create a situation where the population of Saskatchewan can back both teams with one being in the eastern conference and the other in the western. If both should win their conference they would be the province of Champions ! Could you imagine a grey cup.
Saskatoon also has a strong Business community that could be big corporate sponsors for the Saskatoon team and get the seating capacity at Griffiths up to CFL standards. The Luxury suites alone should be filled by the business community of Saskatoon.

This has been discussed a fair amount...the province is simply not big enough.

If you call it a total population of 1.1 mil that is for argument sake 550K in the north, 550k in the south.

In the Saskatoon and Regina area we'll say there are 300k per area. You want 25K at a game...so say 21k local and 4k commuters. That is 7% of the local and 1.6% of the rural...Rural...yeah, you might approach that, supposedly Taylor pulls in about 5500 'commuting' fans per game (I assume that is something like 100km or more), but 7% of the population showing up to a game...can't see it. I think ideally you'll see more like 2 - 2.5% of the local population showing up at best.

I think this would take one strong franchise and create a Regina club that was hurting and a Saskatoon one that was struggling.

You'll have a hard time converting Saskatonians and those in the area to a new team. The Riders have been the provincial symbol for decades, and even stronger over the last decade. Furthermore, the Saskatoon Rider store sells about half the Rider merch since it opened, so it's fair to say that support for the Riders is pretty spread out in the province. In order to make a franchise there work, you would basically have to somehow break them of their attachment to the Riders, which as you can see from away games in other stadiums is not easily done.

In short... Good luck.

(This coming from someone born and raised in Stoon; my allegiance will never change)

I can't see the funding being there to build 2 CFL size stadiums in Saskatchewan.

I could see an expansion in the future to balance out a possible Moncton/Halifax or Quebec City team. This league could grow too 12 teams and Max out around 14 Canadian clubs if/when our population grows over 40 million. But not for decades.

Ideally though I would like to see a 10 team team league with Halifax and minor league system created where each team has a farm club. (Canadians Only) I could see London(HAM), Kingston (OTT), Barrie (TOR), Quebec City (Als), Moncton (HAL), Windsor(WIN), Victoria(BC), Saskatoon (Sask), Kelowna (CAL), Lethbridge (EDM).

This could help get better Canadian players into our league and eventually we could lower the import ratio.

A minor league system is an interesting idea. Extending Juniors to a pro level. All Canadians I like it. The Arena Football league model could be used. Where players basically get Housing and Meals and get paid $450 a game. Local University and Junior football officials can be used.

Saskatchewan would go from a province that sells out a Regina Stadium, to a province with Argo crowds in Saskatoon and Regina, Wish it could work, maybe in 100 years it will.

this idea is so F'n stupid.


You have to keep in mind the Ncaa rules many playing junior want to play in the States so for this to work yes give them housing and meals but that will have to be it with a small pay each week it can't be $450 a game to stay with in the rules.

A lot of interesting replies to this post. It seems at least those that are on this site are against a CFL team in Saskatoon. My question is why was it a topic at the CFL congress in Regina last week ? Is it possible that an ownership group from Saskatoon interested in an expansion CFL franchise ?
Does anyone know the answer to this?

Who know what the demographics will be in decades when the population hits 40 million. All Canadian cities may have MLS teams by then and selling out every game. High schools and universities could ban football because of the head injuries and the insurance costs to play football.
Forty years ago in 1972, the CFL had higher attendance than they do now, Hamilton was averaging 32,000 a game and the Argos around 33,000 a game. Despite the HUGE increase in population in Southern Ontario in 40 years, attendance at CFL games has dropped dramatically. So population increase doesn't necessarily translate into a growth in sports fans.

The league has to try hard to maintain a CFL team in Toronto and Hamilton, they both lost money last season. We also know how Montreal and Ottawa can both be up and down over the years.
Don't forget that Monreal lost CFL teams twice and Ottawa lost two CFL franchises.


Probably because Eastern-based media prompted a comment with a question.

In Ottawa/Montreal people want Cfl and do support it and yes there has been issues in the past but i think bnoth markets are solid with Toronto/Hamilton they really don't want Cfl they think its below them all they want is Nfl.

Have to think that in light of this, there must be merit to the suggestion. The battle of Saskatchewan would be a genuine hoot! :cowboy: :thup: :twisted:

I think there may be something to it population does not mean success as we have seen in Southern Ontario but a population that is #1 CFL priority might be something too that. Putting the Saskatoon team in the East as I said would allow fans to support both teams. 10 teams would mean 2 games with every team. Winnipeg has been in the East due to being the closest city to the east. allow them back in the west to go through the West Playoffs and the second closest team to the east being Saskatoon. I would bet that the CFL would make allowances for the best additional seating that can be added to already renevated Griffiths stadium for the chance to add a 10th team and a 5th game a week.

Why the hell is it always people from outside Saskatchewan that think this is such a good idea, but very few in Saskatchewan? Give it a rest already. I echo cflisthebest's comment and in light of stanpsfanatic's comment, I'll reiterate this comes from a born and raised Saskatonian. The more serious discussion about a Saskatoon team was when the stadium project was being bungled and Saskatoon/Saskatoon media was making noise about trying to steal the Riders from Regina.

We're happy with having a single strong provincial team, so quit trying to screw up a good thing.

I get my info from the top Riders sports people on the Sports Cage with Rod Pederson. He along with Frenzy and the Mueller Family all thought it was a good idea. They did disagree on when it should happen within 5 year or at least wait 10 year after Ottawa but they all agreed that it would work.
If they are not Saskatchewan people I do not know who is .

Well from being in the general population, it's not something that I've ever gotten a sense of it being a good idea. It reminds me of one of those plans that senior management in a company thinks is absolutely brilliant and everyone will love, then when it's rolled out, it falls completely flat on its face because no one actually wants it.

[b]mikem wrote: Who know what the demographics will be in decades when the population hits 40 million[/b]
well Statistics Canada currently projects a national population of 47.7 million by 2036, and 63.8 million by 2061, that may very well lead to expansion growth in the near future if the league and generational predecessors maintain momentum and propagation of fan enthusiasm/interest.

The fact that this country has outpaced all G8 countries in population growth the past decade certainly bodes well for subsequent Metro development, of which the CFL must take advantage.

The opportunity to grow the game is imminent, IF marketed correctly.