this saturday's Eskimo game to draw 45,000+

[url=http://slam.canoe.ca/Slam/Columnists/Jones/2010/08/23/15118521.html]http://slam.canoe.ca/Slam/Columnists/Jo ... 18521.html[/url]

This is getting goofy.

It’s looking like the Edmonton Eskimos may play to a Commonwealth Stadium crowd close to capacity Saturday.

Imagine that.

Despite being so bad that they haven’t managed a regular-season crowd to match their preseason game attendance of 33,708, the Eskimos are going to get something close to a sellout crowd because this time Saskatchewan Roughriders fans aren’t going to save a section.

That was what was plastered on the Stadium Road billboard before the Roughriders came here last year, remember?

“Hey Eskies fans. We’ll save a section for you!?

That game drew a CFL regular-season attendance record of 62,517.

On Monday morning, when the 1-6 Eskimos returned to the practice field from their bye week break following a 56-15 loss to the Calgary Stampeders, the staff returned from their break to find out they might be dealing with another ticket stampede similar to the one which sold out the Grey Cup game back in early June.

With a full week before Saturday’s 5 p.m. fixture, a total of 45,000 tickets had been sold!

It seems that’s roughly the magic number at Commonwealth Stadium, the number where the tough-ticket syndrome kicks in, when fans start scrambling for seat location and stop holding back, waiting to find out what the weather is going to be.

Is this a stupid season or what?

It began with Edmonton selling out the Grey Cup when training camps were opening, when the game has never before been sold out before Labour Day. Then the Eskimos play so poorly they can’t match their pre-season crowd. Now …

Well, who knows?

But 45,000 and counting …

Coming off a game that featured a record-equalling most points ever given up by the Eskimos and the biggest margin of defeat against the Stampeders, it’s logical to assume it’s not Edmonton fans buying up all those tickets.

Is it possible there are enough Saskatchewan fans out there to buy the rest?

It’s the Roughriders’ centennial season, and the celebration of 100 years of Saskatchewan football will be undertaken twice here this year (three times if they return for the Grey Cup) by the fans who (another billboard) “Walk Among You? and drive from flatland locales near and far.

“Every visit by the Riders is a hot ticket, regardless where either team sits in the standings,? said Eskimos marketing manager Dave Jamieson.

“I call it the ‘Yankees effect,’ where the brand is so strong that it pulls even casual or marginal fans out to the park.

“The rivalry is as strong as it has ever been, and we’re counting on Eskimos fans to be out in force to counteract the Saskatchewan effect … and be wearing our shade of green.?

Despite sharing the indignity of having the worst record in the CFL with the B.C. Lions in a year when there were relatively high hopes of the Eskimos returning to being a team which could, at least, contemplate the idea of getting to their own Grey Cup game, Edmonton could still end up leading the league in attendance — as always.

Despite a healthy increase in season-ticket sales because of the Grey Cup, the average attendance sits at a less-than-impressive 31,763 through the first four games of the Esks’ so-far shabby season.

In Edmonton, a number like 31,763 definitely represents a stadium half empty, not a stadium half full.

Around the rest of the league, that’s a pretty good number — and it still leads the league. Calgary sits second with an average of 31,345. Saskatchewan is third at 30,047, followed by Winnipeg at 27,046, B.C. at 26,518, Montreal at 25,012, Hamilton at 23,434 and Toronto at 21,689.

But Saturday really could be one for the books.

The Eskimos drew 31,888 in a loss against the Argos, go to Calgary and get their butts kicked 56-15, fire a coach and have another one resign and come home and maybe double the size of their crowd?

Only in the CFL, and only because of all those green people wearing watermelons on their heads.

Just goes to show you how far the Rider fans have surpassed the rest of the League!

it takes the Saskatchewan Roughriders to come into Edmonton to add an additional 15,000 fans into the stands!

it's not done yet, could stil get another 5 to 10,000 fans by Saturday if the weather is great!

And despite what the Esks guys say, there's going to be more Rider fans this game. :cowboy:

Interesting, the Esks better be up for this tilt.

well, they should be able to Stand up for the first half, then they’ll need their bench in order to be able to sit up! :lol:

If the Weather is great? Hell if the weather is -30 and snowing Rider fans will be there :rockin: :wink:

The eskimos are averaging 31,000 of their own fans every game.

Adding 15,000 rider fans is hardly 'more rider fans than esks fans' :roll:

how many of those "Esks" fans are Rider fans first?

I know there are quite a few.

I have no quarrels with you cflisthebest as on another thread I enjoyed your post about your story on how you came up through the ranks in your college days. I know I'm off topic; but as far as Warren Moon goes, I see the light on what public relations expierience (minimal) would he bring to the table for GM? Getting back on topic, the Roughrider fans love their team as do Esks fans (me), so should be an exciting game with different shades of green in the stands. On the plus side the home team just may win. :cowboy:

if the Riders fail to show up? yes.

if the Riders come well rested and well prepared, hell no!

Love the enthusiasm.
Love the trash talk.
Love that Rider fans will be dumping tons of $$ into EE coffers.
Love the delusion of those who think there will be "more Rider fans there than Esks' fans".

8)

and I love that half of the fans at the game will be going home unhappy as usual this year! :stuck_out_tongue:

The Eskimos have led the league in attendance for decades, I just never realized that it was because of Saskatchewan fans.

Who knew?

How many of the 15000 are Esks fans as opposed to Rider fans?
I know a lot of casual Esks fans that only go to the Calgary or Sask games.

Exactly.

I sure wish this recurring theme of people trumpeting that it will be just Rider fans there would stop. Yes there will be a lot of Rider fans. No there will not be more Rider fans than Esk fans. Same goes in every stadium.

Yes Rider fans show up in droves to a lot of parks, namely McMahon and Commonwealth, but we never, and will never, out number the home team fans.
Doesn't mean we aren't louder though :wink:.

They always say the same in Calgary too. 23,000 season ticket holders or more. 35,000 seats... So you know there are more stamps fans but they try to tell you there are more rider fans there then stamp fans. Math don't add up. It makes sense to have lots of rider fans. They prolly like comming to a decent stadium once in a while

I picked the eskimos to win this week in VGCC. :?

i'm old enough to remember the Riders hosting a telethon to save the team, so I'll a little hesitant to gloat at this time
still it's impressive. and Esky fans should be applauded for drawing 31k when they have only one win this year. Deadmonton might not be my favourite team, but they are still a first-class CFL city.
would that Toronto had the same class of CFL fan...

I don't remember a riders telethon. But I know in Calgary before the Larry rickman era(say what you will but he saved the team) Calgary having goofy fundraisers And my dad donating money to the telethon to save the stamps. I think it's awesome that rider nation fills the stands to help the league. I just wish thry would buy merch from all teams as well...

That makes 8 of us that have picked the EE to win this week so far.

I'm picking Edmonton as well. Need to create space between sask and Calgary