The CFL Expansion Thread

Take THAT, Kickers!! :rockin:

I sort of chuckled when I read that report J5V because I wonder how many of the ardent CFL fans who post here would feel having the Conference Board of Canada describe the CFL this way - "The CFL is not trying to compete with the National Football League. Instead, it is a second-tier league (similar to the American Hockey League, which largely serves as a development league for the National Hockey League)."

A honest interpretation that may or may not be partly true, though I will still prefer to see the CFL as a different type of game that exists nowhere else.

First-tier, second-tier aside, I even view the CFL as higher up than the NHL. The talent pool is not diluted by soon-to-be 32 teams, whereas America is a football factory and only so many young talented Americans get the chance to ply their trade. Then there's my vigorous, self-righteous opinion that Canadian football is run properly and is simply "Our Game."

Some may argue, what are you crazy? The NHL is the top-tiered hockey league. Or is second only to the Olympics. But I can see how much better the NHL would be if it was not heavily Americanized with regions/teams I will never have a real rivalry with. For analogy sake, just because politicians say we live in a democracy doesn't mean we actually live in a democracy.

The Maritimes is a no brainer. It balances out the league, and gives every Canadian a natural, geographic rooting interest.

Adding QC as the 11th team would be foolish, unless there is a sixth team in the West to balance it out.

If Thunder Bay hasn't grown by then, Anchorage will be the only viable option; which would furrow many a brow over the import rule.

I don't think the CFL will ever restrict themselves to 10 simply because 11 is an odd number. The league has had nine for most of its existence, so they can make 11 work. If there is a business case for adding more teams, they'll get it done. With 11, there would be 99 games with 19 five-game weeks and one four-game week. Not too complicated.

Like most people have mentioned, I'd like to see Halifax get a team so that most of the provinces will have "their team." Given Mark Cohon's track record, I think he could get it done by 2019. Earlier than that is bit too optimistic.

As far as Halifax goes....

I am hearing about interest from Cohon
I am hearing about interest from the mayor
I am hearing about a potential stadium

What I an NOT hearing about is a potential owner. Until somebody (with deep pockets) steps forward, that other 3 are largely inconsequential.

While they are inconsequential without an owner... They are almost a requirement to attract an owner.

Or you know... Community Ownership. Which has been repeatedly stated as the probable course of action with this Atlantic franchise.

Exactly. It's a chicken-and-egg conundrum.

And regarding no reports of potential buyers, that's not really surprising as businesses like to keep such prospects tight-lipped until a deal is finalized. It saves face in case problems arise and a deal is aborted for whatever reason.

Furthermore, if there are interested franchisees out East, I'd think all the publicity over Cohon, the mayor, and a stadium would only strengthen their interest in investing. Baby steps, but positive baby steps.

Certainly the Maritimes is the CFL's goal as it is the only region without a franchise. This will lock the league from coast to coast.
If QC were to have the resources and strong ownership group one day the CFL would certainly not say no to an 11th team.
In fact an 11 team schedule works out pretty good with a 20 week season. Each team getting a bye in the first ten weeks and one on the second 10 weeks.
There has been an unbalanced league for may yers with 5 in the west and 4 in the east.
Having 6 in the east and 5 in the west.

Anchorage would be an interesting option, something I would love to see if possible. Don't understand why the import rule would be a problem. If the would-be owner doesn't agree to it--then they don't get a team.

Though I suppose such a rule could be challenged, at which point the team could simply fold.

Kelowna, and thus the Okanagan, wouldn't be an option. Kelowna isn't a world-class city as much as they might like to think. Fans can't buy season tickets with service entry jobs and high rents.

Problem with Anchorage is no stadium and weather in November.

Of course, they would have to build one, exactly like Halifax, or for that matter, Quebec City down the road if they decide to switch gear after they get their NHL team back or tire of AHL hockey.

As for the weather I assume the stadium would be domed, like BC Place, unless Anchorage has--and I assume it does--heavy snowfall and that makes it implausible, but surely, Anchorage being coastal, it would not be any worse than Saskatchewan.

Nevertheless it would be interesting to hear, just for curiosity's sake, what Cohon would say if queried about Anchorage.

Perhaps Anchorage could be given a territorial protection area, from which players would qualify as non-imports? Then they could use either Canadians, Alaskans, Hawaiians and Tongans, for example, for their 20 non-imports (i.e. Chad Owens) . Fairbanks weather is somewhat similar to Vancouver and is probably nicer than some prairie cities. The lack of stadium is an issue but Americans are pretty enterprising and could probably get one built if they had a chance for a pro football team.

With Anchorage, along with Portland, Boise and Rochester, that's a good start for a U.S. northern division! Others potential expansion cities include: Grand Rapids, Milwaukee, Detroit-Windsor, Worchester; and Sacramento, Albuquerque, Salt Lake, Pasadena; plus an East and Southeast division in non-NFL cities.

Yeah let's send Hawaians to Alaska :rockin:


Good post. :thup:

If there is a business case and interest. You can always make a case for expanding a business by adding more franchises, but that alone is not enough and not always a wise decision. They have to be smart about it like they are doing with Hamilton. Get feelers out, guage interest and proceed with caution. They need to solve the ownership question first though IMO. Either you have potential owners or ownership groups or you are going with a community owned team and then award them the conditional franchise like they did with Ottawa. Then you can proceed with getting a stadium in progress. Going the other way - getting a stadium built first - won’t necessarily guarantee that an owner will all the sudden emerge from the shadows to get your franchise.

Question: do American CFLers still count as imports if they obtain Canadian citizenship?

Please - no silly talk of American expansion again. The last time they tried that it made the league look like a totally amateur hour organization with empty looking stadiums for the most part and in some cases ridiculously tiny end zones shoe-horned into stadiums not built with a Canadian football field in mind.

Never mind the fact that by American law it would be illegal to mandate the minimum number of 'Canadian' players on a roster for US based teams - so any American team by law would have to be allowed to have as many Americans as they want on their roster - just as was the case the last time there were American teams.

Interesting question. I think the import rule stipulates where you in where you spent your formative years.