the truly sad thing about toronto and the argos

Factor #1 - Sound in theory but doesn't work in practice. I know the rest of the country feels better when they blame national problems on Toronto's supposed attitude of superiority, but it's a cop out for a lack of understanding of the problem. The Toronto Rock are a small sport team that draw almost as well as the Argos playing in the ACC. This also disproves the "Toronto can't make a minor league team work" theory. The Argos play in the worst venue in the CFL (maybe in all North American football), walked away from a venue that the fans wanted them to embrace and have not had a decent season in over 5 years (last years fluke aside).

Factor #2 - True. Bad stadium, wrong fit for football and this team.

Factor #3 - Thier ticket prices are not outrageous but they could get more creative (better season ticket deals, mini packages, single game family pack deals). As for concessions I doubt they have much control over that. You don't get much say in concessions when you are not paying any rent ($1/year). They could learn from the Rock who put more butts in the seats by keeping prices reasonable.

Regarding curtained off sections near the field:

The 100 level seats are so shallow, the first 10 rows on the sidelines are obstructed by the player's benches, hence the banners.

My question is why in the face of attendance figures of 20,000 in a 52,000 seat stadium did they do away with the banners used from 2004 through 2010? These banners walled off the outfield bleachers and covered the majority of the 500 level. They sported the Argos logos of yesteryear and many of their all-time great players in the 500 level. In the early Cynnamon and Sokoloski years, they blocked off the north and south extremities of the 500 level leaving the sidelines for discount nosebleed seating. This was the best configuration for football ever employed at Rogers Centre and when the Argos were averaging 30,000 a game in the mid 2000s with playoff crowds in the 45,000 range dare I say there was some atmosphere in there.

Here's photos of the previous configuration for those who are wondering:
http://football.ballparks.com/CFL/Toronto/interior.jpg
http://www3.telus.net/critter/images/argos_dome_02.jpg

Here's the present configuration:
http://cfl.uploads.mrx.ca/tor/images/gallery/2011/08/_ARG52112629.jpg

if the Rock tells me to put my butt in a seat, you can bet I do it, no matter how much money he wants. I can call the cops later :slight_smile:

Exactly why they need to get out of there. It doesn't take a brain surgeon to figure out that it's not good business to play in a venue where the best seats in the house can't see the field. :roll:

Some good points. Do the Argos have the option of using or building a stadium at one of the Universities, simalar to what the Als do?

We can identify the problem (stadium), but the key question remains. What can be done about it? The answer right now is nothing.

They can't share BMO Field without a serious rebuild as the CFL field is too long.

Also, who's going to build a new stadium? Not Braley. He likes the extra revenue for Grey Cups. I crusaded for 10 years to anyone who would listen about the need for the Lions to get out of BC Place (closed roof, cavernous, sterile etc.). Thank God the retractable option came through and some serious coin has been thrown as upgrading the stadium experience, but to the best of my knowledge David Braley didn't have to pay a dime; it's all on the BC taxpayers.

I will say though in the Ackles era when the Lions were getting 32,000 - 35,000 a game, the atmosphere was considerably better. Maybe that's what it will take in TO....a better, more exciting team. I hope so, as I don't see them moving out of Rogers Centre anytime soon.

Fair, although you can't tell me a degree of NFL entitlement isn't also playing a factor, because it certainly has been a factor in me trying to get friends to go to Ti-Cat games. I don't like bringing the Rock into it, because they are a very odd case. For one, it's hard to gauge how much their total player salary is. Second, they are the top Lacrosse team but their sport doesn't have as much popularity so that's tricky, even more so since they've been fairly consistently competitive. They also have MLSE crossovers to work with and market with. Also keep in mind, the Argos wont the cup seven years ago, compared to the Leafs 44, the Marlies never, the Raptors never, TFC never and the Jays 18.

Factor #2 - True. Bad stadium, wrong fit for football and this team.
We are both agreed
Factor #3 - Thier ticket prices are not outrageous but they could get more creative (better season ticket deals, mini packages, single game family pack deals). As for concessions I doubt they have much control over that. You don't get much say in concessions when you are not paying any rent ($1/year). They could learn from the Rock who put more butts in the seats by keeping prices reasonable.
You are probably right about the concession's, but $12 a beer is terrible. Heck $8 a beer is terrible, but I'll do it, anything over $10 is overkill. The worst part is I don't know if the Argos even get a cut of the outrageously high concessions. I would assume they do, but I can see Rogers taking a big chunk out of it in lieu of rent. The big thing I have to scream about is no Family/Youth section or pricing. If you can't take your kids to the game for cheap, you aren't building for the future.

I'm also going to add Factor #4

Competition - Toronto is a big market, yes but a sports fan has a lot of options in Toronto. The Leafs, TFC, Raptors, Rock, Jays, Argos, Marlies and even the Missisauga St. Majors, Brampton Battalion, Oshawa Generals and the Buffalo Bills (they do come to town) have a say in their market. Some could even argue the Ti-Cats, Guelph Storm and Kitchner Rangers also take away from them, although I wouldn't. I only know a handful of diehard Ti-Cat fans who commute from Toronto to Ivor Wynne for games. Unless the Argos had an owner in MLSE (who is the dominant power and would move them to BMO) or Rogers (who would make sense if they didn't have a hard on for the NFL) it's hard to cross promote and fight for that market share.

I know they practice at the University of Toronto in Mississauga. Maybe that's a possibility. Mississauga itself is around 600,000+ and close to Toronto to not be too much of a problem to the existing fanbase. I don't know if the mayor Hazel McCallion would let it fly though. She doesn't humor Mississauga going into debt at all, and believes the city should be run like a business so I wouldn't count on her fronting a dime.

Those banners in place at the first rows are probably there because you won’t be able to see over the players’ heads on the sidelines.

Hence, the stadium was not built for 12s football.

The lines are too long for concessions. Sounds like Columbus Crew soccer in its first years at their new stadium!

I said it once, and I’ll say it again. It’s critical to get the correct problem definition in place FIRST!

Evidence for a need for CFL11s and CFL12s?

The forum reminds me a church schizm. The folks that want CFL11s in addition to CFL12s aren't here any more to be heard.

Using BMO Field for Toronto in CFL11s ...might work.

Are "we" oppressing the freewill/market desires of Canadians for CFL11s? Are they sending a message we won't be supporting CFL12s anymore as a substitute? Or...is the Rogers Centre (view of the action, lousy dates, something else) the cause?

Maybe Toronto wants CFL12s all along (Hammer's conclusion about "the universe" is all wrong), but they just detest the Roger Centre setup?

With all due respect to your ideas for different codes of football in Canada, to call it CFL 11s and CFL 12s merely sugar coats what you're suggesting for CFL purists. 11s is American football, 12s is Canadian football. We have names for this stuff already. Call it what it is.

There are no fans of 'CFL 12s'... there is only the CFL as it stands.

Its a stroke not a brain attack right?

The irony is that the Skydump was supposedly built to allay all the pussy fans that got wet and cold at the 83 Grey Cup in old Ex stadium... I was there. Most of the open south side, built for Jays, emptied quickly when it started raining and fans on the older north side who weren't under the cover decided they would climb up and block the stairs and our view of the game. There were more than a few fights. When they built the Dump they forgot that there was a football team going to play there too! Also mentioned in a previous post is the fact that most of the security is heavily power-tripping. I've seen kids kicked out because they had their feet on the seats in front of them..nobody around them..they weren't bothering anybody. When I asked about it I was told if I wanted to complain I would be told to leave...I left anyway. That place doesn't get my money!!!!

That I am willing to blame on Toronto. Every been to the ampitheatre at Ontario Place (I refuse to advertise for the corporate name)? Some of the worst security I've ever seen. They actually travel in packs as the walk around. Your description of Skydump (like that can I use it? :lol: ) sounds exactly the same. Must be in the water.

You mean American football? Or NFL football? Just because you keep repeating it doesn't mean the rest of the world will eventually accept your logic.

And your point is inaccurate ("Hence, the stadium was not built for 12s football."), the stadium was not built for football. Period. You honestly think putting in a narrower field and taking 1 man off the field makes the site lines better?

I don't buy the NFL entitlement argument. Yes there are those that like NFL and don't like CFL, but I don't think that will impact the team regardless. And I don't think it's an entitlement issue, you don't see them lobbying for an NFL team the way Winnipeg fought to get the Jets back. If it was an entitlement issue I think the Bills series would be sold out every year. The attendance, although good, has dropped every year of the series. I think it's a matter of, as you pointed out, marketing. Embrace the NFL and show people they can follow and enjoy both.

For the competition again I have a problem here because most of what you mention is not competition. Baseball is dead in Toronto, however it is the only big league competition during the summer. Soccer is not worth mention and hockey and basketball don't start until the CFL is in it's playoff run. The Rock play outside the CFL season. The Argos are lucky, they play essentially competition free. They should be able to draw in October during the playoff run when others are just starting their season and during summer they play in the same venue as the Blue Jays almost eliminating them as competition at least for attendance. That leave TFC. If you can't out draw soccer in Toronto that's damn embarrassing.