TOUCHDOWN ATLANTIC 2 in HALIFAX / Instant Replay on the way!

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While it still needs final approval, the video replay system is all but a go for this year's Canadian Football League season.

The CFL board of governors has forwarded the plan to the league's competition committee to receive its stamp of approval.

Director of officiating George Black, who has been spearheading the video replay system, said yesterday there are still some aspects that have to be worked out.

He said the CFL model combines aspect of the U.S. college Big 12 Conference and the National Football League. The CFL will employ a technician and a video-replay official in a booth similar to the Big 12, but the final decision on the call will be made on the field by the referee, similar to the NFL.

Black said the exact number of challenges that will be available for each team is still under discussion, but challenges can be made at any point in the game. This differs from the NFL, which allows only the video-replay officials upstairs to challenge calls in the final two minutes of each half.

"We just felt the challenge mechanism was a better and more efficient way to go and to preserve the integrity of the game," Black said. "It's just a modest difference in philosophy."

While a manual has been prepared to explain the video-replay system, Black wants to create a DVD for some select plays that are "demonstrably reviewable" to help in the education process for teams and the media.

The system will rely heavily on television feeds -- it's estimated that all but one of the games is scheduled to be televised -- and in the absence of TV replays, the scoreboard replays will be used.

"We think we've got a system that will work and we'll try to get it as polished as we can," Black said.

ARGOS LIKE SCHEDULE

The 2006 CFL schedule is apparently close to being unveiled and it will feature the Argos playing at home predominantly on Fridays and Saturdays. They will play only two games crammed together in a short span of days and that will be the back-to-back games against Hamilton on Labour Day, followed by the return date the following Saturday at the Rogers Centre.

WESTWOOD SPEAKS OUT

Winnipeg's outspoken kicker Troy Westwood told the Winnipeg Sun he doesn't like the aspect of the new salary management system that allows players to be "whistle- blowers" on teams that cheat on contracts.

"Pay players to rat on their own teams? Good luck with that. That's atrocious," he said. "Any man worth his salt is not going to rat on the organization that helped him put food on his family's table."

TOUCHDOWN ATLANTIC II

It's expected to be announced shortly that Ottawa and Montreal will play a pre-season game in Halifax as part of the CFL's continued efforts to add an expansion franchise before the end of the decade. The Argos played against Hamilton in Halifax last year.

Halifax is the leading contender, if only because of the possibility it is going after the 2014 Commonwealth Games. The host city will be announced in Nov., 2007.

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Home will be Halifax for the Renegades this CFL pre-season.

The league will announce as soon as today that Ottawa and Montreal will play in this year's "Touchdown Atlantic" exhibition game at Husky Stadium in Halifax.

That means the Renegades have given up their lone pre-season home game to help the latest attempt at drumming up interest in CFL expansion.

"The league was looking for another team to play a pre-season game on the road, and if it's good for the league we thought it would be good for us," said Renegades president Lonie Glieberman, who would not confirm the site.

TEST OTHER MARKETS

"We think it's crucial to have expansion," added Glieberman, who also strongly supports the CFL's return to the U.S. "And if the way to have expansion is to test other markets, we wanted to be a part of it.

"If playing this game helps us get expansion, then that's the best investment Ottawa can make to the CFL this season."

Last June, nearly 11,000 Maritimers paid either $62.50 or $40 to watch the Ticats and Argos hold a pre-season game at the same venue.

The Renegades-Als drew 12,660, with considerably cheaper ticket rates, for their pre-season game at Frank Clair Stadium.

Interesting that it is stated, not surprisingly I should add, that the Gliebs are in support of expanding to the US. But nevertheless, it is interesting to see them publicly state this in the papers.

well i agree with him that expansion is needed, i disagree that expansion to the US should ever happen....unless the CFL has long had a well paying us tv deal, and there are a couple us markets drawing amazing tv ratings...then try some pre-season games there...if well attended, we can have further discussions.

but its nice to hear lonie sayin he's happy to do something for the future of the CFL....cool of him.

IR: two chllengers with a 90 sec or less clock. good to know they will be using the TV (TMO) in the process.

TD Atlantic: I thought it be Ottawa giving up home advatage for this, too bad it's Halifax AGAIN! but ok. though it shouldn't be Montreal to meet them, should be Toronto or Hamilton. Let's hope it's as good as the game on Canada Day.

Agree with you there, this isn't the Contenietal Football League, THIS IS THE CANADIAN FOOTBALL LEAGUE!

Don't really want to talk much about US expansion but what the heck. Doesn't the Ontario Hockey League and the Western Hockey League, all part of what is known as the Canadian Hockey League, have teams in Portland and Erie? Haven't heard a lot of complaints about a couple of teams in the US from what I know at least.

The Q also has a team in Maine. It's sad but ture. I believe all US CHLteams should die and go to the AHL, while all the AHL canadian teams become CHL ones.

But KK, this allows some American kids the chance to play junior and stay in their own country while doing so. Why shouldn't the CFL allow some US college players the same opportunity helping the game to grow south there and get more exposure? Or should we really be as provincial as you suggest?

....BIN THERE DID THAT.....expansion to the United States did not work before....and seeing how the demographics haven't changed a great deal....it won't today...CFL did well in Baltimore....but you have to have more interest than that...or it won't fly... :!:

i wonder if touchdown atlantic 2 will be aired on TSN again?....i missed it last year, and really wish i could see it somehow.

It was great watching a CFL game telecast from the east. I do hope it is on again for sure, really makes me even more proud of our CFL.

i really hope they expand huskie stadium to 15 000 or more this time.....it will make a bigger statement to the NS politicians and thier media if the turnout is bigger than last time.

last time they could only expand to 11 000 because all temporary seating in the area was being used in the states for bush's victory parade thing....

that's not a problem this year, so they shoulda have access to more temp. seating.

Even if they sell standing room for cheap, it would be a boost.

Figures that the Gleibs would want expansion to the States...Hmm. Mardi Gras, Toga parties, US Expansion...Yup another intelligent idea from the Gliebs.

I Agree, the more tickets, the more chance of expansion there!

No, no, I don't think we should just write off the Gliebs because they see some positives in US expansion, I mean they are Americans afterall. All I'm saying is that this topic can be discussed, not that it will or should happen, but I don't think it is a topic which should be just written off as taboo necessarily. Discussion isn't a bad thing but opinions without really having open and frank discussions are.

Why I hate American expansion, is that they (American teams) wouldn't have to use Canadians (Labour laws) and it would change the structure of the game.

Halifax would make a nice 10 team league. Perfect size, everybody plays each other once during the season.

Maybe, just maybe down the road Quebec City and a Western City (?????) could be added.......

I would like to see more Canadian teams also but only if they can meet the standards of a CFL expansion team according to what the CFL has laid out according to their vision of the league. If this can't happen and one, or maybe two at most, good American markets could be considered if they have all the right stuff. But yes, always try Canadian markets first.
Having an American team with all Americans would not bother me, I would love to see a Canadian based team beat them with our Canadian quota, that would be super.

the hardest part about discussing expansion is there is no CLEAR place out west to put a team....there are 2 clear places for eastern expansion ( halifax and quebec-city )....which would put the league to 6 east teams and 5 west teams.

so where would the 6th west team go?...right now, it doesnt look like there is a spot....no stadium, or potential stadium that could house a team....no city with a big enough population without being too close to an existing teams established market...saskatoon would hurt the riders, and some would argue victoria would hurt the lions.most say thunderbay doesnt have the population, and 4 ontario teams is too much right now...so the best we could hope for now is an 11 team league.

we've had an odd number of teams for this long, why not stay odd, but with 11 teams rather than 9?...sounds good to me.

Good point dg, so since ther would be 6 east and 5 west, could we then have TWO cross overs from the west go east??? :wink: