Some CFL expansion talk to muse on?

Second Sask. CFL team plausible

By David Hutton, The StarPhoenix February 11, 2012

[url=http://www.thestarphoenix.com/sports/Second+Sask+team+plausible/6135543/story.html]http://www.thestarphoenix.com/sports/Se ... story.html[/url]
...a second Canadian Football League (CFL) team situated in Saskatoon

— and a scalable stadium — is worth investigating as the population grows,

says the co-author of an extensive 12-part series from The Conference Board of Canada

examining the country’s professional sports market.


P.S.

about the Conference Board of Canada

Our Mission

The Conference Board builds leadership capacity for a better Canada

by creating and sharing insights on economic trends,

public policy and organizational performance.

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The term is “Plausible” not likely! they’ve done an economic study and based upon income, interest etc But the important issue is ownership, without millionaires willing to spend and lose money there is no expansion.

I don’t agree with their population example either, Hamilton is not a small market city, Hamilton has a metro population of up to 8 Million people. When talking about sports franchises they use the “45 minute radius” when looking at potential attendance. Hamilton has access to the largest population in Canada - probably 8 million people live within 45 drive of IWS. The problem is that Hamilton can only access a tiny portion of that market.

But who knows maybe a team in Saskatoon is more viable than a CFL team in Toronto.

No way the Riders are going to let Saskatoon have a team. It would require a stadium and they won't want to share that pot of gold.

Mikem,

I agree with your points but where do you get the 8 million figure from? I mean the entirety of the Golden Horseshoe (Niagara to Oshawa) can be said to be 8 million people but I hardly consider anything east of Yonge Street in Toronto within 45 minutes of IWS. Let's say these metro areas are all within 90km or 45 minutes of IWS:

Niagara Region: 427,000
Hamilton - 504,000 (not using Hamilton-Burlington CMA since I'm considering half the GTA which already includes Burlington)
50% of GTA: 3,000,000
Guelph Metro - 141,000
Brantford Metro: 125,000
Waterloo Region: 478,000
Haldimand - Norfolk: 108,000
Oxford County - 102,000
Perth County - 74,000

London is outside 90km. Are you throwing Buffalo and Niagara Falls, NY in there? Its more like 5,000,000-ish with a large chunk of its biggest component in what should be considered Argo territory...but the point remains with about 5 times the population of Saskatchewan..

Some excerpts that i liked from the Conference board of Canada's report:

Conclusion Our market analysis indicates that there is room for more than eight teams in the Canadian Football League. Ottawa is already expected to join in 2014, and cities such as London and Moncton could be contenders. If positioned and marketed as regional teams, both locations have the required market size, as well as stadiums that could be expanded to become permanent CFL facilities.

Adding Ottawa, London, and Moncton would lift the number of teams in the CFL from 8 to 11. As for Québec City, the focus for now is solely on bringing the NHL’s Nordiques back. But the CFL could be the next step for this community over the longer term. That would increase the total number of teams to 12. Looking even further into the future (and depending on the success of Moncton and London), Kitchener–Cambridge–Waterloo and Halifax could join the league. But this is where it would stop (at least for the next 10 to 20 years). Fourteen teams has to be viewed as the upper limit for the CFL.
Expansion will not happen overnight. Moreover, there is the issue of ownership. Even in a good market, strong ownership is key to a franchise. Finding dedicated owners for each additional CFL franchise will be key to the long-term success of any new franchise.

Still, there is considerable room for growth in the CFL—from the current 8 to an upper limit of 14 teams. A CFL of 10 or 12 teams would be much more entertaining for fans, and would create new regional rivalries that don’t exist today.
An expanded CFL—one that grew step by step—could have a bright future.

In both Hamilton and Québec City, NHL-worthy facilities are either just a renovation project away or are on the way to being constructed—strengthening these two cities’ position as the only two potential new NHL markets.

Quebec City is interesting, they are going ahead and spending 400 million on a building with no tenant and Betteman has said there is no guarantee of any kind that the NHL will put a team there. Montreal may not be interested in seeing its fan base cut by a team there. Actually mind boggling that in this economic climate to spend 400 million in tax payer money to build something that could potentialy sit empty forever.

I was just about to say this myself, especially the part about the Argos. It's all fine and dandy that Hamilton sits inside the largest population base in the country, but Hamilton is not the centre of that base, Toronto is. This is what people like mikem fail to realize. You can't count Toronto and the GTA because they are, in very simplistic terms, spoken for when it comes to a Canadian pro football franchise. Hamilton's base, again in simplistic terms, would be Burlington, Guelph, etc. and everything south of Hamilton. Oakville, Mississauga and especially Toronto are, quote-unquote, Argo territory. Hamilton's radius may extend into Toronto, but that doesn't mean they are tapping into that market. It's already spoken for.

...mind you they are rumours but the "word" is that the Phoenix Coyotes will be moving to Quebec City and could be as early as the 2012/13 season. The Coyotes current Owners (ie the NHL) are somewhat motivated sellers.

I think Quebec is getting the Coyotes.

host Bob McCown casually segued into asking Aubut about the odds of Quebec City getting the financially strapped Phoenix Coyotes. Specifically, when could they have a new arena up and running? Any time now, Aubut said. The financing is in place for a new arena and we’re ready to go, he said. The news about a shovel-ready arena surprised both McCown and co-host Stephen Brunt. Clearly, neither had any idea that the arena plans were so advanced and said so.

Aubut was excused, and when PTS came back from commercial, Hockey Central host Daren Millard was sitting at the desk with a quizzical expression, asking, Did I hear correctly? To answer that question, Brunt’s former colleague here at The Globe and Mail, Sean Gordon, was brought on the line. McCown asked Gordon if Aubut was correct about the arena plans. Yup, said Gordon, with a few caveats they are ready, and the money is in place. Everyone here in Quebec knows, Gordon said in so many words.

[url=http://www.theglobeandmail.com/sports/hockey/quebec-city-arena-story-emerges-from-off-hand-remark/article2333066/]http://www.theglobeandmail.com/sports/h ... le2333066/[/url]

If we think simplistically as Oakville and points east as being Argo territory, then we can subtract the GTA figure and the Hamilton figure and substitute it with the population of the Hamilton-Burlington CMA at 721,000.

This would peg Hamilton's catchment area (ignoring the fact that the Niagara Region is very Bills-friendly) at 2.2 million-ish.

The current 8 team league scares the heck out of me since if any one of these 8 teams folds, the CFL could go defunct.
(just my opinion, but I don't think a 7 team CFL would work for numerous reasons)
I'm highly in favour of expansion as laid out in the quote above. In terms of a team in Saskatoon, I think that this idea
would fly since Saskatchewan has the most avid fans in Canada and Saskatoon is a good 3 hours away from Regina.
Saskatoon is also one of the wealthiest cities in the country.
I would also be in favour of expanding to 12 teams for now, if only to preserve the league's future and integrity.

If we had to lose any team, my choice would be the arg0s since Toronto is feverishly trying to enter the NFL anyway;
not that I think they have a snowball in hell's chance of doing so. It appears they may also be sans stadium very soon
if the Blue Jays opt for a grass field.

I agree, I think we can live without the Argos and the league would be healthier without them.
An eight team league with Ottawa, I don’t see any other city in the forseeable future.

I still say it’s a matter of time before the NFL comes to Toronto and I’m sure the Rogers Centre would accommodate the NFL. I think the grass field problem would easily be solved with the NFL, the baseball season is almost over when the NFL begins the second week of September.
Some great points here

[url=http://www.huffingtonpost.ca/kolby-solinsky/can-toronto-host-an-nfl-t_b_1254124.html]http://www.huffingtonpost.ca/kolby-soli ... 54124.html[/url]
The current 8 team league scares the heck out of me since if any one of these 8 teams folds, the CFL could go defunct. (just my opinion, but I don't think a 7 team CFL would work for numerous reasons)
agreed. The repercussions of another CFL team insolvency would be far reaching and could very well spell league cessation.
I'm highly in favour of expansion as laid out in the quote above. In terms of a team in Saskatoon, I think that this idea would fly since Saskatchewan has the most avid fans in Canada and Saskatoon is a good 3 hours away from Regina. Saskatoon is also one of the wealthiest cities in the country. I would also be in favour of expanding to 12 teams for now, if only to preserve the league's future and integrity. If we had to lose any team, my choice would be the arg0s since Toronto is feverishly trying to enter the NFL anyway; not that I think they have a snowball in hell's chance of doing so. It appears they may also be sans stadium very soon if the Blue Jays opt for a grass field.
Indigenous expansion should be a priority for Cohon to increase league coffers, fan interest, diversity and possible increased pay scales in order to maintain talent. For this to occur, targeted communities need to utilize a pro-active mission statement adjacent with a meticulous step by step diligence to achieve this.

With requisite stadiums, Quebec City and Halifax should encounter immediate success.
IMO municipalities such as Saskatoon, London, Kitchener/Waterloo, Victoria etc etc may not be currently feasible for CFL expansion although could ameliorate within the next decade or so, increased development permitting.

That being said, I still believe Toronto is an integral entity of the CFL and should be fervently addressed.

Stop with the NFL-to-Toronto stuff. I ain't happening. The NFL gains nothing by putting a team in Toronto. The NFL is not looking to expand, and even if they were, LA would be destination No. 1. Toronto would probably not even be on the list. I get a chuckle every time I see people bring it up. We'll all be long dead before the NFL puts a team in Canada.

It's hockey Hf and you don't think QC is jealous as heck Winnipeg got "their" team back before them? You're darn right they are jealous.

Mike, listen to Blogskee, he knows a lot more than you do I would say about the NFL in Toronto. Tell me, how does the NFL put a team in Toronto if the $100 mill plus reno goes ahead at the The Ralph? I'm all ears.

The smallest market is that of the Saskatchewan Roughriders, with Regina at 215,000 people. The Roughriders are a highly successful franchise, so it could be argued that the minimum market size required to support a CFL team is as low as 215,000.

But we don’t believe that a market of 215,000 is sufficient to support a CFL franchise. The Saskatchewan Roughriders, while located in Regina, are properly named—the team benefits from the support of the entire province, and even that of Saskatchewan natives living outside the province. So we don’t think that there could soon be a game between, for example, Regina and Saskatoon—adding a second franchise in Saskatchewan would divide a unique market and place one or both franchises at risk.

Our market analysis indicates that there is room for more than eight teams in the Canadian Football League. Ottawa is already expected to join in 2014, and cities such as London and Moncton could be contenders. If positioned and marketed as regional teams, both locations have the required market size, as well as stadiums that could be expanded to become permanent CFL facilities.

Adding Ottawa, London, and Moncton would lift the number of teams in the CFL from 8 to 11. As for Québec City, the focus for now is solely on bringing the NHL’s Nordiques back. But the CFL could be the next step for this community over the longer term.

[url=http://www.conferenceboard.ca/reports/briefings/bigLeagues/briefing-11.aspx]http://www.conferenceboard.ca/reports/b ... ng-11.aspx[/url]
http://www.conferenceboard.ca/reports/b ... ng-11.aspx

This from The Conference Board of Canada's Report has relevance to your comment mikem that...

I think we can live without the Argos and the league would be healthier without them.

A Strong Corporate Presence

The third pillar required to support a pro sports franchise is the presence in the region of corporate head offices.

Filling your arena or stadium every night is good, but filling dozens of corporate boxes every night is even better.

The rental rate for corporate boxes is high relative to the rates for other seats in the stadium. The same holds true
for the price of food and drinks served in the boxes. Plus, boxes can generate sponsorship and other revenues.

And even if a stadium does not have corporate boxes, the relatively higher income
of employees in head offices will help to support the fan base.

Undeniably, Toronto, Calgary, Montréal, and Vancouver are in a league of their own
on this criterion. In fact, Toronto is well ahead of everyone else;

the head offices of 286 of Canada’s 800 largest corporations
—36 per cent—are located in the Toronto metropolitan area.

And last but not least, the TV advertising dollars that these corporate head offices invest in

are essential for the CFL to garner a large number of dollars from a TV contract with a network

which is essential money the league shares with all the teams in the league for them to survive.

Hamilton Ti-Cats would suffer without the Argos .....

I live in Saskatoon and this city eats sleeps breathes smells listens the Sasky greens as much as our neighbors 2.5 hrs SE of us in Regina. The WHOLE province is obsessed with the greens.

I know plenty of people who happily commute 2.5 hrs from Saskatoon to Reg. for rides home games. I'm not sure why the starphoenix would publish such a rubbish article, another team in Sask would just ruin the CFL paradise we already have here.....

I read an article a few weeks ago about a bunch of guys from Saskatoon who made some suspect trip, then justified it on the basis that they were studying the feasibility of a CFL franchise in Saskatoon. Honestly, I feel like the main reason this has become a story again is because those guys were using the "CFL in Saskatoon" as a cover-up.

Saskatchewan has a good thing going on with the Roughriders. It's nothing short of a miracle, in my opinion, considering how small Regina is compared to any other CFL city. I don't know why people would want to ruin that by diluting the market.