Will A Canadian CFLer Ever Win Athlete of the Year?

You see a guy like Jerome Messam rush for 1000 yards this year.
First Canadian to do so in years.
Then there's guys like Jon Cornish who is coming into his own.
Plus there was Andy Fantuz leading the league a few years back.
Yet none of these guys got a sniff for Canadian Athlete of the Year.

Will a CFLer ever win?
As long as these awards are controlled by the Toronto media, I doubt it.
They would choose a bench warming baseball player over a CFL player.
Because the CFL is not considered a "major league" sport by that bunch.

They love anybody who has succeeded in a league down south.
Then if there is nobody, they'll choose a hockey player.
But they would never consider a Canadian in the CFL.
And this in a microcosm is the problem the CFL faces from the Toronto media.
A total lack of respect.

I doubt it, a Canadian receiver could have a 1500 yard season and lead the league in td's or a linebacker set the record for tackles/sacks but it's not considered by the people doing the voting to be done in a "major" league I'm sure so therefore not respected in the same light. Very unfortunate.

It could happen, but not likely. They love to give this award to olympic sport athletes more often than not. Hell, Sidney Corsby has won it in 2007 and 2009, but before then you have to go back to 1993 for a hockey player (Mario Lemiuex). Last 2 years, they gave it to a baseball player.

Having said that, 2011 team of the year has to be the BC Lions. If they don't win, something is up.

It's rare for Canadians to win Offensive or Defensive Player of the week, (I don't see AotY going to anyone on special teams). When that starts happening on a regular basis or when a Canadian QB leads a team to a Grey Cup victory, then maybe you can start blaming the media for not giving the award to a Canadian CFLer. As long as Canadians in the CFL keep getting bested by their American teammates, I don't think that the decision makers are obligated to consider them. If you want Canadian CFLers to have a better chance at the award, put the pressure on Football Canada to develop players better before they reach the CFL.

The problem is that a Canadian CFLer would need to win the MOP award to even be considered. And that makes sense when you think about it. That hasn't since Tony Gabriel won in 1978. Russ Jackson was named MOP in 1969 and had just led the Rough Riders to back-to-back championships. Consequently, he is the most recent football player to be named Canada's Top Athlete.


A major consideration in the Lou Marsh award is depth of field. I remember they decided against a women's Canadian hockey player because of depth of field.

So a Canadian running back in the CFL for instance is only beating out 8-10 contemporaries to win the rushing title. That's the CFL unto itself. I mean if we want to go over all top-tier gridiron football, then we'd have to compare how a running back might have done as compared with NFLers as well...

This year figure skater Patrick Chan wins the award (how ironic, lol)...
As I mentioned, this award goes mostly to athletes in the olympic sports, rather than the professional team sports and much less so to even hockey players.


As a football fan I would not mind the Lions winning, however they should not be a lock, there are others who would be good choices, including:

The Stoughton Rink - Canadian and World Curling Champions
The Vancouver Canucks - blech
and my own personal choice, The Canadian Women's Rugby 7's team which recently won the World Rugby 7's Championship.

Until the CFL actually becomes Canadain... You will never see this....
Like One head coach in the entire league is Canadian.... Why do clowns like Bart Andres get jobs over CIS coaches who have coached the game their whole life. Even Trestman had never even known Canadjan football... Maybe if they hired a CIS coach instead of Tresmen... They would of won 4 in a row instead of only two...
If there is a salary cap and Canadian content rule on players... Then why not on management?
More Canadian coaches... more Canadian players...
Well dirtbag Wally never bothered, and even jerks good Canadians around like Paris Jackson... but you would hope so anyways.

One Canadian head coach (now GM) and you continually call him a dirt bag. Nice.

How much nonsense can one person spew in a night? :expressionless:

You would think a couple Canadian CFL players would win the award considering Lou Marsh himself played for the Argos. But the yuppies who vote for this "award" don't care about the CFL. I agree with the comment made earlier that the award too often goes to Olympic sports. I mean, Figure Skating? Really? It's Dancing on ice.

I looked at the list of some of the "Athletes" that have won over the years. There are a bunch I do agree with, for example, Joey Votto was DEFINATELY the most deserving Canadian athlete in 2010. Great choice. However, here are a few comments I have:

2008 - Chantal Petitclerc - Wheelchair racing: Chantal Who???? Never heard of this person until I saw this. I watch sports centre 5/6 times a week. Georges St. Pierre should have won this award in 2008.

1995 - Jacques Villeneuve - Auto racing: WHAT???? You're an "athlete" if you drive a car? I drive a car. Am I an athlete too? I might not drive professionally. Is TTC bus driver an athlete? He drives professionally. What a joke!

1971 - Hervé Filion - Harness racing: AGAIN! The Horse is doing all the damn work. How is this guy an athlete? He just sits in the caridge on wheels back there, whipping the poor horse.

1952 - George Genereux - Shooting: Apparently if you've been to a gun range, YOU'RE AN ATHLETE!!!! What a joke.

1953 - Doug Hepburn - Weightlifting: Who are you competing against? A peiece of metal? It does take Athletic ability but just underscores the point that if you win an Olympic medal, you're automatically a front runner for this award even if the "sport" doesn't require any athletic ability.

Source: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Lou_Marsh_Trophy

I guess beauty is in the eye of the beholder. I would suggest that all athletic endevours are worthy when you consider what it takes to compete at the World level. Which may be the crux of why CFL players rarely win because it could be argued that they are competing at a National level, not a World level. All winning choices have merit and on any given year the pool can be quite shallow. As for your suggestion that GSP should have won, I don't like his sport so I guess by your post, only the sport you like should be chosen, so in my World a street fighter shouldn't win. I know there is more to his sport and it takes great athleticism to succeed but I am using that as an example, the same can be said for any in your list.

Doug Hepburn by the way, not only succeeded in competing and winning at the World level, he did so with a significant physical handicap, that shouldn't be a factor in receiving the award but it does show that his rise to the top of his sport was one of great perserverance and hardwork.

I personally like the idea that sometimes the award is given to those competing in more obscure sports and not just the mainstream athletes. I also like that often the winner is in an individual sport and not a team sport because so much of the success of a team athlete is because of those playing with hem or her.

A lot of awards out there in society are who knows who know who type of thing, political and really don't mean much because of the biases of the voters.

Birdman, what someone considers a sport is very subjective. Though typically, people remark that sports require physical activity, that's not necessarily. At its most basic definition, a sport is simply an activity with a competitive nature that offers entertainment. Some consider mental games (such as chess) and e-sports (electronic sports, like video games) to be sports.

What constitutes a "sport" is extremely broad, and you're certainly entitled to your opinion of what a sport is. However, when it comes to an award like this, it is my personal belief that it's better to stay open-minded as to what it takes to be considered an athlete, so as to not make people feel ostracized for their outstanding performances in their respective sport, whether one considers it a sport or not.

If that's the case then I think we need to redefine and sadly, water-down the term "athlete". Webster's Definition:


  1. (Individual Sports & Recreations / Athletics (Track & Field)) a person trained to compete in sports or exercises involving physical strength, speed, or endurance
  2. a person who has a natural aptitude for physical activities

I would argue that every one of the persons on your list of "questionable" winners of the award would qualify under Websters definitions. I would also include "use of motor skills" as an attribute that should be included in any definition of an athlete.

I've given this a little thought since my last comment. I am now quite certain that the 2011 Canadian Team of the year will have nothing to do with performance and everything to do with newsworthyness. The winner will be, the Winnipeg Jets.

Anyone want to bet?

Could be right Voice. But the Lions starting the season what 0-5 or 0-6, pretty darn decent that’s for sure and with the pressure of hosting the GC and trying to be in it. Very tough.

Wow, that didn't take long. Winnipeg Jets, Canadian Sports Story of the Year.

[url=http://www.cbc.ca/sports/hockey/nhl/story/2011/12/15/sp-2011-storyofyear-winnipegjets.html]http://www.cbc.ca/sports/hockey/nhl/sto ... gjets.html[/url]

Lions will win something before the year is out though. Not that they should care, they already have the important one and nobody gets to vote on that.