Ticats.ca "on-line" Pep Rally for the final stretch

There are only three games to go and we are right in the thick of a play-off run. Those of us who have been Tiger-Cat fans since childhhod and for some of us, well over 30 years, we can remember awe-inspiring, old fashioned pep rallies in the downtown Gore Park area or in front of the former Royal Connaught Hotel, ususally right before a playoff game.........

I'm not sure what is planned for us fans this year but I certainly hope the team knows that most of us truly believe that they have it in them to kick some serious butt, get into the playoff picture and wreak some havoc.

So, in the "Pep Rally" spirit, here's the classic Tiger-Cat fight song to get the players and coaches pumped!

http://www.argonotes.com/CFLSongs/Hamilton.mp3

( courtesy of www.argonotes.com )

Feel free to add your well wishes all you Ticats Fans!!

Go Cats Go !! :rockin:

Fantastic job this year boys, absolutely amazing improvement. Be weary though, your job isn't done yet, finish strong guy's. Hamilton loves ya and will be there to back you all the way, maybe not directly at the game but at home we'll be going nuts as you play with the heart that the Tiger-Cats are well known for. GO CATS GO!!!!!!!!!!!!! :rockin:

Here's a great story by the Calgary Herald (Oct 2) about the Ticats.....and exactly how Marwan Hage feels about this team and how much he wants us to win the Grey Cup....perfect for this Pep Rally thread I'd say !! :stuck_out_tongue:

[url=http://www.calgaryherald.com/sports/Glory+days+help+Ticats+keep+faith/2061450/story.html]http://www.calgaryherald.com/sports/Glo ... story.html[/url]

Glory days help Ticats keep the faith

By George Johnson, Calgary Herald

October 2, 2009

Marwan Hage enjoys kicking back with big Angelo Mosca and listening to tales of yesteryear; of a long-ago time when the Tabbies had the swagger, the sass and the Grey Cup rings to back it all up.

"I spend a lot time with Ang,'' says the sixth-year centre. "He's a wonderful guy. And he says when they were winning Grey Cup championships, the place lit up like Las Vegas. He tells you there's nothing like it.

"I can only imagine.

"Hamilton's a football town. A small town with a big heart. We're 6-6 and people act like we're 12-0. You walk around town and people are slapping you on the back, high-fiving you, telling you to keep going. They've had enough losing, too.''

The Hamilton Tiger-Cats arrived here for this early evening game against the Calgary Stampeders as the surprise entry of the 2009 season. They've already won as many games as the last two seasons combined. Marcel Bellefeuille has to be the frontrunner for coach-of-year at the moment.

A once-proud organization battered to its knees, on the canvas and taking a mandatory eight-count, is back on its feet, ready to rock 'n' roll once again.

For anyone with the slightest sense of history, it's shaping up as a lovely story.

"Stability,'' says Hage. "That's what we have now. And what matters. In ownership. In management. The coaching staff. A lot of great players have come through Hamilton during my time here--more than a few Hall of Famer-calibre guys -- but most of them didn't stay long. In. Out. In. Out. That revolving door just kept spinning. Players. Coaches. It made you dizzy.

"You want to build a team, you go through some pain. But you stick with it. You develop a core and fill in around it. Quick fixes and band-aids don't work.

"Calgary is a great example. Henry (Burris) has been here a few years now. A lot of their key guys have.

"That's why they're defending Grey Cup champions.''

Safety Sandy Beveridge has the distinction -- if that, under the circumstances, is the right term --of being the longest-serving Ticat. He arrived in Steeltown as an undrafted free agent out of UBC seven years ago. The Cats promptly tinkled outside the litter box, stumbling and bumbling to a tragicomic 1-17.

"You know, it really didn't seem THAT bad at the time,'' he says wistfully. "Probably because everything was new to me. I was a rookie. In pro ball. Just trying to keep up, fit in and show I actually belonged. I was kind of wide-eyed and taking everything in. So in that sense, it really didn't hit me as hard as it could've.

"If I had to go through a 1-17 season now? Brutal.''

Marwan Hage joined up a year later, in 2004, when the Tabbies performed one of the great endarounds in CFL history, picking themselves up off the bottom of the compost heap to actually qualify for the playoffs at 9-8-1 (they haven't so much as sighted the post-season, or a .500 record, since).

"Everyone,'' he recalls now, "was SO excited that year. I'd come in from a successful college program (Colorado), where we'd been champions and everyone took winning as a habit. So I get to Hamilton, we make the playoffs, everybody's jumping up and down and I'm kind of shaking my head, thinking: 'Hey, what's the big deal!?'

"Well, I found out. "I was humbled.''

No wonder. Since then, five wins, four, three and three. The Ticats became a knock-knock joke with an unending series of punchlines.

"I think the hardest time for me was the end of last season,'' says Hage. "The year is over and you have to start revving yourself up for the next one. But you feel drained, losing all the time. It leaves you kind of limp. Knowing that by Thanksgiving you're always out of the hunt, an afterthought. It's tough to pick yourself up.''

But pick himself up he has. They all have.

"I'm happiest for (owner) Bob Young,'' says Beveridge. "He's put a lot of his hard-earned money into this team. And our fans pay their hard-earned money to attend the games. You want to give them something back. You see a lot of the same faces year after year. At the park. At promotional functions, at maybe a McDonald's or a Tim Hortons. They get their Big Mac or their coffee, ask for autographs and talk football.

"Those are the people I feel great for. The ones who've kept the faith.''

Hage says that even during the darkest moments, faith has never been an issue for those in the stands at Ivor Wynne.

"Our fans have always been great. They care. They've been at the stadium through some pretty tough times. They could've turned their back on us. They didn't. They might've booed, but they showed up. They were THERE. And that's all you can ask for. It's like the guy who's always whining: 'My father was hard on me!'

"Hey, don't complain pal. At least you had a father.''

Kicking back with the baddest Ticat of 'em all, big Ang, Marwan Hage hears the stories of what it's like to be a champion in the city steel. He listens and he wonders.

"I know he's dying to see it happen again. I'm dying. Everybody on this team, in town, is dying for it, too. We're not there yet, obviously, but we're headed in the right direction. After what we've gone through, of course you appreciate it more.

[u]"Celebrating a Grey Cup in Hamilton? Like I say, right now I can only imagine.

"I don't want to imagine. "I want to live it. I want to know.''[/u]

gjohnson@theherald.canwest.com

Very good article. It's great to see that the players recognize that the fans are in this with them and that although we may not sell out every single game like some teams, the Tiger-Cats are a BIG thing here to everybody. Wether you like football or not. Should we win the grey cup anytime soon, the city will go absolutely insane. You'd likely see parties for 24 hours after the game, everybody on the street screaming and hollering with their Ticats apparell, car horns blaring all over the city with die-hards hanging out of them. Man, I can almost taste the victory beer and feel the amazing feeling of being a champion city. ahhhhh....
GO CATS GO!!!!!!!!!!! :rockin: :rockin: :rockin:

Great to hear that again! Many don't know that it was written by a former Tiger-Cat player, team GM, CFL Commissioner and member of the Canadian Football Hall of Fame (as a builder) -- all the same person -- the late Jack Gaudaur.

For any current Tiger-Cats who may not be aware of the importance of success this season for long-time fans ...... The first Grey Cup game was played 100 years ago in 1909. AT LEAST ONCE in EVERY DECADE since, a team representing Hamilton has won the championship. No other city can make such a claim. Following the earlier teams -- the Tigers, the Alerts, and the Flying Wildcats -- the Tiger-Cats have kept that record going since their inception in 1950. Last decade was the closest the club ever came to having that string broken, but the team came through, in the very end, with Hamilton's most recent Grey Cup win in 1999. Gentlemen, this is 2009 -- another last chance! We're counting on you to GIVE IT ALL YOU GOT!!!!!

Well, there's one game down and two to go........Congrats to the Ticats for their win over the Argos last night !

Bring on the Riders! :rockin:

Great thread, Mike! An old fashioned rally would serve to inspire team and fans alike.
I can remember several rallies taking place at the HAAA grounds where many an exciting
football game took place over a period of many years before Civic stadium (now IWS)
was even built.

I always made it a point to attend these rallies and to see the players, coaches and managers
up on a podium or at centre field, (depending on location)

It was great to see the team as a whole, absolutely awe struck by the turn outs, even in some
terrible weather.

I feel in my heart that these rallies went a long way towards winning 15 grey cups and
as evidenced on the field; the each team mate playing his heart out to bring home
championship after championship for the fans in Hamilton and surrounding area.

Just as great were the rallies we had following grey cup wins or losses. fans turned out
for these in droves and had a great time.

There were always marching bands and cheer leaders, speeches and generally, someone
from CHML MC"d these events.

The rallies proved that not only the football team was tough, but the fans were also and
they strongly showed their support near or into the playoffs.

Bring on the rallies!

Civic stadium was built 80 years ago and you can remember that?

Fail.

I sure as hell can. I didn't say anything here about Big Four, ORFU or CFL football. I said FOOTBALL!

There were hundreds of organized games played there and I played in many of them myself.

The Hamilton Amateur Athletic Association Grounds (also known as the Hamilton AAA Grounds) on Queen Street South right before Charlton Avenue West in Hamilton, Ontario, Canada, is a park that was home to the Hamilton Tigers from 1872-1949. In 1950, the Tigers merged with the Flying Wildcats to create the Tiger-Cats. The Tiger-Cats joined the Canadian Football League at its founding in 1958.

[url=http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hamilton_Amateur_Athletic_Association_Grounds]http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hamilton_A ... on_Grounds[/url]

Admittedly I don't pay a lot of attention to the Mikey conspiracy, but I thought "deerhunter" and "spikejones" were one and the same? Zontar, can you help out on this one?

Have you been in a cocoon? Its been known for some time that "{deerhunter" and "spikejones" are NOT one and the same person.

Would it be possible to stick to the thread's topic?

Oh, Ok. Rock On!

I recently visited the HAAA grounds killing time between service calls and read the historical plaque mounted there at the entrance. If I recall correctly it said the HAAA grounds played host to something like 10 Grey Cups. (or something close to that) It's still quite a place and looked quite busy with the locals using it for it's track facilities, soccer etc.

It's also quite a nice neighbourhood to stroll through in the fall with all the large maple trees in the area.

If I had to live downtown, the Herkimer area would be my first neighbourhood of choice.

I recently visited the HAAA grounds killing time between service calls and read the historical plaque mounted there at the entrance. If I recall correctly it said the HAAA grounds played host to something like 10 Grey Cups. (or something close to that) It's still quite a place and looked quite busy with the locals using it for it's track facilities, soccer etc.

It's also quite a nice neighborhood to stroll through in the fall with all the large maple trees in the area.
If I had to live downtown, the Herkimer area would be my first neighborhood of choice.[/quote

Great little west end community there ...
My great grandfather had a tattoo of the Hamilton tigers . I played junior at HAAA before moving to Braves football in boringhton ....But Haaa was always a very busy place kids playing,runners. every type of activity going on around the field . Big parts of Canadian sports history that's for sure ... Tennis Club right next store ,,,, Just south of our so called downtown core . At some stand lets go back in time and get close and personal with our players and coaches .. That would be fun . Retro uniforms old speaker system that's not so loud . Hot peanuts with beer . MMMMMMMMM my grandfather got some reel to reel 8 mm film that would blow some minds of old sports history ..The old jockey club the HAAA grounds and some great bay shots sailing clubs and the heritage of our beach strip ...all good stuff the younger generation forget about .. A little of topic but Go CATS GO ....

The last couple of years i would have like to be in a COCOON !!

Actually "Melrose Maniac", it might be a great idea for the Ticats to hold a fan get together once in a while at the HAAA grounds just for historical sake. Maybe next year sometime ?

Just tossing the idea out there anyhow........ :cowboy:

ALl the die hards would be there but the parking issue would kill that venue .. :thdn: They built a school and those folks that pay big to live in that neighborhood already fight for parking on a daily basis ...That is a great idea but the logistics of moving people would be a great battle ... :thdn:

I would love to see any event held there ..... just to show the tradition of sports in Hamilton Especially Football . :thup:

Great thread deerhunter.
The last Tiger-Cat pep rally I was at was in 1961.....it was at Jackson Square (long before what's there now) if I remember correctly.
What a blast! Talk about community spirit! Time to get back to that kind of stuff. :rockin:

It was for the 49th Grey Cup held at CNE stadium. Winnipeg beat us 21-14 in the very first overtime Grey Cup in history.
When I was at Central High School, track and field was held at Civic Stadium. Bob Krause ( and THE Paul Henderson) were in my Grade 12 class.