Should We Break Up Toronto?

It might be worth designating certain sections of BMO to the different areas of the GTA.

They could have, for example, a Scarborough Supporters section and a Vaughn Supporters section or something like that.

And if there are Argos players or coaches with connections to the different parts of the GTA, the team could use them to rally support from their home neighbourhood.

Maybe the team could market some of their merchandise with that in mind, or have their ST gifts reflect the area of general area of each ST holder's home address, like York, Peel, Durham.

Of course it wouldn't have the same impact as expansion, but it could be a more feasible way to appeal to regional identity within the GTA.

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The football fans are there, they just aren’t cheering for the Argos, so perhaps we could entice them back with the shiny new thing.

How you engage a small market town is very different than trying to engage an area of over 6 million people.

When everything is a priority nothing is. There is a fundamental resource difference, reaching out to 20 local high-schools is one thing but north 40 is a different thing logistically.

Its a question of focus, if they switch to a revenue share model like they should the problem then becomes if teams are dealing with equal resources it poses a problem in scale, budgets dictate scope of focus and Toronto is far more diverse and a different animal than any other market and thus should be treated differently.

My theory proposes that perhaps breaking GTA into more manageable regions the marketing and engagement can be more targeted and bring back people the Argos lost and weren’t likely to get back and allow the Argos to retool and focus their efforts on their key demographics.

It isn’t just population density, each of those areas has in London have very different demographics behind them which alters the flavor and how the teams reach out.

It can work in a franchise environment, think back to original MLB with 3 teams in NYC, each section with a different vibe and demographics of their fans.

CFL is not a major market type of sport, its more intimate and localized and that is hard to do with 6.5 million people. That size market expects top flight and not the smaller folksy thing that is CFL.

So I merely propose that we consider something radically different, a unique approach for a unique league. We are thing unto ourselves with now good comparisons since our dynamics are unique in sports.

We keep tossing out traditional solutions which may be fine, but might not be the best option. We should be open to exploring some radical approaches as the crisis before us is going to be very serious.

Not talking about relocation, just expansion.

The NFL will eventually expand. When they announce that and start accepting bids i have zero doubt an ownership groups will emerge for Toronto unless we’ve changed the dynamics of the market.

When Bobby Ackles was alive he wrote and spoke to Parliament about the danger of the NFL coming to Canada. That it would be the end of the CFL. Of course Ackles was in both leagues for a long time.

I thought that the gov’t responded with a bill not allowing the NFL into Canada. Am I remembering correctly?

Your proposition is not something radically different. It has been bandied about for decades in regards to the Toronto market in the CFL.

I’m not sure how seriously the league has investigated the idea or if the Argos brass has nixed it. But it’s quite possible the league has indeed examined the idea at various times in its history and deemed it not viable.

I’m not sure how much the different areas of the GTA now see themselves as having distinct identities. I suspect that feeling was stronger in the past than it is now, after so much fairly generic suburban sprawl has occurred.

Yeah, ok…fine

I think the bill was in the 1970s when another former upstart US league wanted to set up a franchise in Toronto. Ackles perhaps re-raised the sentiments behind the initial bill

According to this wiki, it was an Act that was never passed:

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Shultz just got released from the Dallas Cowboys, maybe his attitude was getting jaded and Clemons infectious personality renewed his passion for football

I like Clemons also. The Shultz story was to illustrate the infectious personality Clemons has

You’re half right, the bill was presented but never passed, so there is no legal protection for CFL and I fear given the current attitude such a bill is unlikely even if the NFL got serious. They wouldn’t loan usb$30 million and I doubt given our declining ratings there would be much political will to do so.

This is correct and didnt stop WFL from returning in 1990s to Canada

When the 1 team has the same 8 other opponents they’ve had for all but a few of the last 70 years, perhaps therein lies the area for improvement in marketing.

Increase the depth of field and make a more compelling competition and entertainment product by way of more teams.


But practically speaking, you are probably right insofar that to go from current levels of interest to those required to support a handful of teams in one city is probably too great a leap to make overnight.

Its probably best to increase the depth of field by way of Halifax, Quebec, London, Victoria before perhaps trying a far exurb of Toronto like York region or Oshawa. If this is proving successful (20 years down the road) then perhaps more boroughs of Toronto could be looked at.

I’d like to see the CFL go that way. Be more ambitious.

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Bottom line, the CFL will never progress until Community owned teams stop hiding their profits and privately-owned teams stop being used as Tax shelter assets.

Until the owners come clean about the numbers, Government won’t help, players won’t help and the fan base will continue to shrink.

How is that for simple?

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That certainly could be the reality of the situation.

I think now is exactly the time to expand to all those cities. That we should immediately move to a 16 team league. Add 3 to GTA, Halifax, Quebec City, London and Victoria.

Why? Threr main factors, first it will show we are serious and not ready to go quietly into the night. This will better engage the sports media.

Second is competition, instantly creates more natural rivalries and key markets. This will help spark interest by youth and revive interest in those that left.

Third is stadium cost. The biggest and usually insurmountable obstacle has been the cost of a new stadium. If we go prefab and can order 5 or 6 all at once the per unit cost down dramatically. Thus making it more affordable.

Then when things are working out and the TV contract is up we’ll be in good position to negotiate a much more lucrative offer and reward the other owners for their bravery and not getting actual cash for most of the new franchises (I see paying for a new stadium as the entry fee). Then the new owners can take their share and reinvest some into stadium improvement and customization.

Two thoughts:

Toronto needs to field a team with some pizzaz. Ray was a great QB, but as exciting as paint. Bethal-Thompson, or whatever, was worse. Get a few game players with some personality, can’t hurt. Sell some sizzle along with some steak.

I agree with Shultzie regarding Pinball.

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...pfft, 16 teams, too paltry...immediately expand to 32 teams and order those 21 stadiums in a bulk package...your 16 team proposal is puny...if you want sports media to take you seriously then it’s 32 teams or nothing...

....then split those 32 teams into two ‘Conferences’, a Federal Football Conference (FFC) and a Canadian Football Conference (CFC)...each conference would have 16 teams, across the country...those 16 teams would be split into four divisions, based on regionalism, so there’d be a FFC East division and a CFC South division and so on...then those division would have inter league play but also within their divisions, a home-away against each of their divisional rivals....at the end of the regular season the division leaders would participate in the playoffs leading up to the Super Grey Cup!!

..this is the only way we’ll attract serious media attention and major sponsors, like NASA, or Skoda if that's possible...

...also, celebrities will see the value in this and support this new league through their social media accounts...famous ppl like David Hasselhoff could really make a difference here...

I was thinking that if Ambrosie and the BOG really wanted to make things happen and think outside the box, they should develop a vaccine for covid now, before the NFL swoops in and does it. Then use the royalties from selling the vaccine to fund 15-30 stadiums across the country and Bob’s your uncle. Should be doable for the start of the 2022 season I think.

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