Labour Day 1997 Video

Great Footage .Interesting for many reasons.

1-Earl Winfield’s last game
2-Orlondo Steinauer’s first year with the team. He was our MOP candidate that year and he can be seen returning punts as well as playing DB.
3-Calvillo in a Cat’s uniform
4-CBC covering the game
5-Doug Flutie and Pinball Clemons at their peak, kicking our butts.
6-Vanderjat kicking for Toronto
7-The old Stadium only had 18,000 in the stands that day.
The team was still 1 season away from being a dominate force.
I haven’t looked for Part 2 yet, if it exists.
This was a year that Ottawa was out of the league again and there was only 8 teams.
I looked up CFL stats for 1997 and it was a tough year for attendance and things have come full circle. Montreal was still playing at the Big O with only about 9,000 people attending each game. Toronto was only getting 15-17,000 a game even though they were the best team in the league and BC was only getting 17-18,000.

97 team was better than record suggests. Defense was more than competitive. The foundation of the great defense to come in the GC years was already there.
Lost a ton of close games. Problems were on offense.

Earl Winfield retired right after the game
To take a job in education?

Bizarre end to a legendary career

IIRC he took a civilian job in the US military.

At 14:09 of the video they list our D-line. Montford is on it. For some reason I thought he played LB for us and only switched to D-line in 1998, when the legend was born.

D-line positions are listed as: RE, DL, NT and DE.

Montford was only second in sacks for us that season with 8. Our sack leader was Willie Whitehead, who it seems went on to play for 7 years in the NFL. Funny that Montford never got that chance.

Funny that a defence that included DBs Steinauer, Hitchcock, Gerald Vaughn and Eric Carter, the DLs I mentioned, and LB Calvin Tiggle could not propel us to more than two wins.

I’ll bet no one in the stands that day would have believed that HAM’s QB would one day be in the discussion along with TOR’s QB as the Best Ever.

And I’ll bet almost no one on this board would have remembered that our leading receiver in 1997 was … not Amerson, not Grigg, not Morreale, not Evraire, not Winfield, but … Prince Wimbley!

Whitehead was much bigger than Joe. Played everywhere on the line in the NFL. Joe was undersized to play in the NFL but was so fast coming off the edge in the CFL.

Perfect example of skillsets just not suiting the League.

Prince Wimbley!!! Gone but not remembered… ar least, zI had totally forgotten him!

In 1997 I was the ripe old age of 13 and was blossoming into the die hard ticat fan I am now.

I remember the team going 2-16 and questioning my devotion to a team that had just tied the worst ever record in a CFL season.

It was almost as bad as attending the snow bowl Grey Cup of 1996 where the Argos won it all on our turf. Incidentally my father left that Grey Cup game early and went to the hospital. Found out the next day he had a stroke. Thankfully he rebounded from the stroke and we enjoyed 6 more years of life with him before he left us in 2002.

The next two seasons under Lancaster were magical years in my memory.

Sharing the 98 East Final(live) and the 99 Grey Cup with my dad as a young teenager was an absolute joy and are among my most cherished memories.

My earliest memory of the Ticats was the 89 Grey Cup when I was just 5. My dad’s best friend would host a Grey Cup party every year. Good times.

Noticeably different, watching this from 22 years ago, – the players, all, dressed like pros.

Also different, from the norm on Labour Day, the blue boys won that one 46-3 – their biggest victory, among their only 13 wins, in 48 LDCs played since 1950.

Montford only played linebacker during the 1996 season after he was taken in the dispersal draft from the Shreveport Pirates. Sutherin moved him to defensive end the following season. Funny thing about Montford, before he came to the CFL he also played the fullback position for the Charlotte Rage in the Arena League and scored two rushing touchdowns as well as catching a couple of passes.

“You can taste the steel mills in the air”? O…K.

Back the, you could.

I visited relatives there as a kid a number of times. But then, back then, Ottawa smelled of pulp and paper, so I didn’t really notice much, just a different smell from what I was used to.

Great story. Your dad would be proud. :slight_smile:

I could be wrong, but I think that was the game when TC drove over an official with an ATV.