Kickers Should be Excluded From Import Rules

I think kickers should be treated like quarterbacks in that they should not count towards import/non import ratios. When an 18 yard field goal becomes a challenge its time to revisit the rules. I'm tired of watching guys shank punts, and miss easy field goals. It makes the whole league look bush. Guys like Lui, Ozzy, Cameron, Ridgeway didn't need any help, they would have made it anyway.

It's a good idea EastV, just like I would mandate how the third string QB must be Canadian.

I see what you're saying, but the expanded game rosters, developmental squad etc will make it easier for clubs to recruit import kicker and not worry about ratio as much.

I suppose the counter-argument would be, "Why give kickers any more priority than other positions."

As to whether the vets you quoted didn't need help,. I don't know about that. They got help because they were non-imports.

Also, keep in mind that one reason they lasted so long was that no one else --- esp from Cdn schools -- were good enough to take their jobs.

Some of this discussion may end up as a discussion of the import ratio, period. I wonder if people see the number of mandated Canadians being reduced at some point for no other reason than sheer pressure from an image standpoint that the CFL shouldn't have the import rule. I know this has been discussed at great length over the years here. What I am asking though is different - do you see, not that it is a good or bad thing but rather a market driven thing, the import rule being abolished ie. the perception among some would then be that the CFL is just going after the best talent available regardless of the citizenship of the player?

pretty sad if a country of 30+million cant produce 8 adequate kickers. We should not need imports.

Also, It is Canadian Football. It should be Canadians for better or for worse.

No CFL team is forced to use a non-import kicker, they choose to allowing imports to play other positions. If they feel their kicking game is suffering (such as Hamiltons) they can use an import kicker and use a non-import in another role.

I agree. You start eliminating the import ratio and then you really do have all the NFL castoffs. It would strip the Canadian right out of the CFL and then we may as well start playing 4 downs on a smaller field to convenience all the Americans. The import ratio plays into coaching strategy, it gives Canadian talent a chance to show what they can do (something that would not be given to them in the NFL regardless of talent level), and it makes this game Canadian.

Go Riders!!

The only reason why I lump kickers in with quarterbacks is because they can effect the outcome of a game in such a glaring fashion. I hoped that with the increase of rosters this year we would see more teams using import kickers. Unfortunately this does not appear to have taken place. It seems that coaches still prefer an extra reciever or lineman instead of using an extra roster spot on the kicking game. If I wanted to watch a highschool kicking display I'd go watch a highschool game at a fraction of the price. I'll pay pro prices but I want pro calibre kicking regardless of birthplace

NOT Canadian kickers Rule!

Here's an interesting story related to this topic somewhat. In today's Hamilton Specator:

Businessman to develop summer football camp to send 'our best' to U.S.
By Tony Fitzgerald
The Hamilton Spectator
(Jun 29, 2006)
Peter Zonta has a vision for Canadian football.

The Hamilton businessman wants a summer football camp to develop and showcase high-school football prospects for U.S. college scouting combines.

Zonta founded the Central Canadian Scouting Combines (CCSC) based on his view of the Canadian football community.

"I'm not anti-Canadian, but my program is very Canadian oriented," Zonta says. "I just want to see our kids reach their full football potential and the way to do that is send our best to American universities."

He said if a Canadian player was given a choice of playing in the Canadian I at Michigan State or Ohio State, they would pick the U.S. university.

His football camp would provide high-school players a combine overview -- the 40-yard dash, 20-yard shuttle, vertical leap and bench press.

"I've seen too many Canadian kids show up for these college combines unprepared," Zonta said. "The reason a lot of Canadians haven't been recruited is in the past they haven't shown well at the combines."

Zonta has spent much of the last three years in Ohio. He claims to have contacts at Ohio State, Miami of Ohio, Bowling Green and knows what they are looking for.

He admits U.S. scholarships do not come easy, that natural talent and size are an obvious asset, but he says the CCSC can help though preaching year-round training, a positive attitude, commitment as well as providing exposure.

Last year, Zonta took his high-school recruits to Canton to play Ohio high-schoolers.

"I thought it would be a perfect scenario, two cities with football halls of fame," Zonta said. "I thought Hamilton would get behind the program. I got no support."

He said he did not receive positive response from Tiger-Cat owner Bob Young, B.C. Lions owner David Braley, the City of Hamilton, the Canadian Football Hall of Fame or local businesses.

"People here don't want to co-operate," he said. "I can't get anybody to support me."

Critics say Zonta's program is misguided.

"It's been tried before," said Mike McCarthy, Hamilton Tiger-Cats senior adviser of football operations. "College coaches will talk to anybody if they think they can get just one player."

But the Hamilton realtor will not be deterred.

He is planning a football magazine titled Attitude and this year's recruits will begin workouts in Hamilton the last week of July and the first week of August.

"I'm going to keep going," he says. "My goal is not for our kids to become American but (to) let our top kids develop. They cannot, will not, develop their full potential in Canada."

tfitzgerald@thespec.com

905-526-2467

I don't like that idea. It should be the same as every position. If you didn't count the kicker as an import then a lot of Canadians wouldn't even get a chance (Sandro DeAngelas for example). Why would coaches risk using a Canadian kicker if they didn't have to?

Its the CFL. If anything i would like to see more Canadians.

Well arjoel, that certainly is another direction the league could go in, all Canadians. I don't know though, do you think that attendance and TV viewership would fall dramatically if they did this?

nah, keep it as it is, just add QBs to the import rule (at least one Canadian QB per team).

if the teams want a good non Canadian kicker, they can go for one, so what's the problem? you lose another spot to have an import player? trough!

damn strait!

That right there is why I would rather lower the amount of canadians needed for a team. This is the only league where you dont have to be the best available player to make the team. No matter how you slice it the majority of Canadians are not as good at football as Americans or at least not as well coached and trained.

Realistically if the import rule did not exist most of the rosters would be americans with a few canadians making their respective teams. That speaks volumes of the canadian talent level. Also there is a reason that you see as many canadians as possible in positions that do not require a tremendous amount of training and raw skill but rather more brute strength (eg. OL, FB, DT). Compare the number of canadian starting offensive linemen and Canadian starting DBs and the difference is stunning.

Being forced into using more canadians would just lower the talent level of the league. Im not suggesting to abbolish the import rule but lower the number of canadians. I would have no problem with seeing only 10-12 canadians on a roster

I couldn't agree more mada. I too don't want to eliminate the ratio, rather I just would like to see it lowered. Most teams will employ an all Canadian O-Line so that they can employ as many imports in skill positions. As CFL legend Ron Lancaster said, the ratio does help some Canadian players' development along because in most cases they weren't exposed to top quality coaching like their American counterparts. However he went on to say that some players had no business even stepping out on the field but were retained ONLY because of the ratio. In those cases the players were buried on special teams until a better Canadian could be found.

The vast majority of the stars of our league are americans and to think otherwise is silly. The starting QBs are all americans, the starting running backs are all americans, the starting DBs almost all american, the star receivers almost all americans.

I dont mean to take anything away from the offensive lines but the guys that get on he highlight reels are almost all americans. We like to live in this little fantasy world where we are helping out the struggling canadian athelte but in reality we play the ebst americans avaialble at hte positions that require the most skill and play canadians only to meet the requirement and in positions where the skill difference is inherently negligible

But i love seeing Canadian good Canadian players out there. It gives me pride as a Canadian. If you want to watch "the best in the world" watch the NFL.

These things make the CFL special.

The ratio rule doesnt protect the jobs of good canadian players though. Theyd be given a chacne regardless of their nationality. Ben Cahoon would be in the CFL no matter where he was from. the ratio rule only provides jobs for marginal/untalented canadian players that only have the job because of their nationality

How can you say that?

Sports are HUGE in the USA. Way bigger then here. This means stronger competition. The players start younger and compete harder at younger ages. This puts them years ahead of any Canadian athlete.

Canadian athletes need to be given a chance to get some expirience and up there game.

The pro leagues are not a place to go to 'up your game' your game should already be at the level of the rest of the athletes in the league and if you are not at the same level you shouldnt be playing. the time to up your game is when youre a kid