You will never, ever get a commissioner to stand in front of an audience and say ‘Hey folks, our product sucks.’ Not gonna happen. That being said, CFL Commissioner Jeffrey Orridge rightly pointed out some good things the league is doing, and was just about as open as you can expect a commish to be on some of the sore spots.
The good. TV ratings are up. Social media engagement waaaay up. Younger fans are taking an interest in the league. Scoring up. Penalties down. Games close.
The not so good. Attendance down slightly. Video reviews and officiating? Still a work in progress. Conclusive link between football and CTE? Not established. (Whaaaaaaaaaaaaaaat?????)
I love the CFL and I get angry with the constant criticism and cheap shots too many media types take at the league. I applaud and agree with the positives pointed out by Orridge, and the acknowledgement that more needs to be done. The CTE comment is inexcusable, and I think authored in the league’s legal office,. That’s not good enough with lives and health at stake.
I do have to weigh in on a promotion gone kinda wrong that CFL-haters are having a field day with. An Ontario pizza chain was offering a pizza deal, with a pair of grey Cup tickets for 30 bucks. Haters call it minor league, and a desperate attempt to paper an empty stadium.
I say, good idea that needed to be sold better. These tickets were either paid for by the chain. or provided as sponsor material, which is normal at just about any event. These ain’t gonna be prime 50 yard line seats, and let’s face it, even with prices cut, Grey Cup tickets are out of reach for many fans. This would have provided a chance for people who would never be able to afford to experience a Grey Cup game in person a chance to make a lifetime memory. And lifetime memories create lifetime fans.
And isn’t creating fans what Orridge’s job is all about?