The greatest non-specialty punters or kickers who ever played in the CFL!

Years ago CFL team rosters were much smaller than they are today. I remember that rosters were limited to 32 players back in the 1960’s and I imagine that the maximum size allowed was probably even smaller in earlier decades. Up until the late 1960’s therefore punters and kickers were invariably position players on offence or defence who handled their hoofing duties as a sidelight.

This all changed when the British Columbia Lions unveiled Ted Gerela as their kicker in 1967. Other teams very quickly followed suit and the floodgates for specialty kickers and punters were opened.

Who though do you think were the greatest non-specialty punters or kickers of all-time in the CFL? Choose as many as a half dozen from this list:

Jack Abendschan
Tommy Joe Coffey
Lionel Conacher
Martin Fabi
George Fleming
Alan Ford
Cam Fraser
Jim Furlong
Wayne Giardino
Chester ‘Cookie’ Gilchrist
Jack Hill
Ted Hunt
Gerry James
Don Jonas
Vic Kristopaitis
Joe Krol
Garry Lefebvre
Dave Mann
Jackie Parker
Moe Racine
Larry Robinson
Bob Shaw
Charlie Shepard
Hugh ‘Bummer’ Stirling
Annis Stukus
Don Sutherin
Jim Van Pelt
Sonny Wade
Hawley ‘Huck’ Welch
Joe Zuger


My sixth vote is for this guy, though he played long before the CFL existed.

Hah! I seriously considered Hugh Gall for my list of thirty choices but I dropped his name with my final cut precisely because he was so far back in pre-history!


I see though that there’s a certain fly-in-the-ointment when it comes to his Grey Cup mark:

Gall set a record for most singles(single point kicks, also known asrouges) in a Grey Cup game with eight in 1909, a record that still stands([b]though somewhat asterisked[/b][b]because he accomplished the feat before end zones w[/b][b]ere invented and as such as soon as the ball crossed the goal line it was dead and could not be returned[/b]).

Pretty sure there were lots of other wacky rules back then too. Such as 15 aside, a really fat ball, and apparently, the holder for kicks would lie down LOL

Did they even use a line of scrimmage in 1909?

Since he is the greatest,
Could you please spell his name correctly

Man, check out these cleats and the square toe!!

Damn it! I tried so hard on this poll, but I still managed to mess something up.


And there’s nothing I can do about the spelling of his name in the actual poll part of my post now.


Cool list but impossible to pick without knowing each players’ career punting average.
Cam Fraser probably the most known amongst these players for his punting ability (though Charlie Shepard out-booted him & then some in the '59 GC). I’ve read that in his day, Fraser was considered the best punter in pro football, not just Canada.

I should add, it’s difficult to compare punting averages by era because prior to some time in the late '50s, punt distances were calculated from where the ball was snapped, not from where the punter was standing when he kicked it.

The only lifetime punting averages I can quickly provide are for these three players:

Joe Zuger 1962-71 1075 punts for an average of 45.5 yards (including averages of 48.4 and 48.5 in 1968 and 1971 respectively)
Cam Fraser 1951-69 987 punts for an average of 44.9 yards
Dave Mann 1958-70 1261 punts for an average of 44.2 yards

I might be able to find a few more lifetime marks for some of these players but I’d have to tear the house apart to unearth my 1973 CFL record book.


Huh?! I thought that punts are still being measured from the line of scrimmage as opposed to the point of contact.


what? no Mike McTague?

Hmmmmm. He did indeed have very decent stats as a receiver as well as a punter:

Mike McTague Stats

You’ll have to cast one of your votes for Other therefore.


You’re right.
I confused a rule change made to fg lengths not punts.

Troy Westwood score a touchdown rushing, he should qualify.

The ruling on the field stands. No to Troy Westwood.

For sure - hee hee!

Troy also amassed an amazing 71.2% FG success rate - whoo hoo

His punts (after forced into action after Bob Cameron’s sudden retirement at 51) were lower than a snakes belly.

He also was forced to cry on the field when confronted by other team’s top bullies who tormented him into submission. (Ed Phllion, the Toronto Butcher, etc.)

Also lost a pro boxing match during the early part of his career where a 5’3", 120 lb. flyweight hobo named Bruce “The Mouse” Strauss chased Westy around the ring from pillar to post in what could only be called a madcap pillow-fight.

Tommy Joe Coffey has so fardrawn the support of 73% of the voters.

Coffey, Parker and Zuger are all tremendous candidates.

Hmmmm, Which one has NOT been inducted into the CFHoF? ???

Some really excellent kickers/punters, e.g. Dave Mann, Charlie Shepard, Jack Hill, Hugh Stirling, Larry Robinson, etc, though have drawn negligible support.


Such heartfelt emotion, you must feel really hurt. You probably need a hug, to get over whatever it is that has caused such emotions. Or more likely that you need to put on an Earl Scruggs record to ease the pain.

What’s wrong? Did I kick your ass in Fantasy? Ruffle your feathers on that other board?


BTW, who got your votes anyway?