Monday, January 5, 2009

Monday Morning Sentimonies: Welcome to 2009

While the end of December may be considered the happiest time of the year, the start of January is the polar opposite. We’ve gone from:
  • Getting presents from loved ones to getting bills from the mail man
  • Wassailing (good word) with friends and family to begrudgingly returning to your dead end job and annoying co-workers.
  • Delighting at all the delicious food on the table to agonizing over the fat lardo you now see in the mirror.
  • Relishing the joy in the children’s faces when they open your gifts to wanting to rip the batteries out that damn noisy piece of crap and smash it into little tiny pieces.
But fortunately for you, the Rider Prophet is here to offer temporary distraction from this hell we call the New Year

There was a surprisingly large amount of news over the holidays to catch up on so I will do so in point form (yes I am too lazy to put the effort into forming coherent sentences and paragraphs but what do you expect on my first day back)

- Bob Wylie is expected to be named as our new O-line coach. Wylie spent last season as Winnipeg’s O-line coach. Now this fact should be cause for alarm but Wylie has a strong track record as an O-line coach including some time in the NFL. So although he may be slightly tainted from his time in Winnipeg, it’s nothing a good delousing can’t fix.

- Dave Ritchie and Gary Etcheverry appear to be the front runners to replace Richie Hall as defensive coordinator. I’m leaning towards Richie which would be great news for our defense… there are few DC’s around that are of the same calibre as Hall but Dave Ritchie is definitely one of them. It would also make things easier on me as I could continue to refer to our DC as Richie (I’m lazy what can I say).

- 17 Riders are poised to become free-agents. This list is as follows: Jamie Boreham, Tristan Clovis, Darian Durant (who has already agreed to a new contract), D.J. Flick, Lance Frazier, Scott Gordon, Sean Lucas, Neal Hughes, Mike McCullough, Anton McKenzie, Maurice Lloyd, Belton Johnson (who has also agreed to a new deal), Gene Makowsky, Steve Morley, Mike Abou-Mechrek, Jeremy O’Day and Renauld Williams. Wow, most of our O-line and any linebacker not named Yannick set to hit the free-agent market… yup Tillman certainly loves to keep things interesting.

- One free agent in particular is the hottest topic in Riderville… Mo Lloyd. Now the Riders have made a significant 6 figure offer to Lloyd but he has yet to respond. While many see this as a sure sign that Lloyd is skipping town, all this really means is that Lloyd wants to wait until Feb 15 to see what other teams are willing to offer before deciding… it’s business plain a simple. Though I do find it humourous how in a few weeks time Lloyd went from being seen by the fans as the heart and soul of our defense to an outspoken, me-first player we don’t want back anyway... when nothing at all has happened.

- Congrats to Kent Austin and the Ole Miss Rebels for upsetting Texas Tech to win the Cotton Bowl… with an offensive scheme that I found oddly familiar.

- Speaking of College football… after seeing this year’s list of bowl games I say that Americans have no right to bash the CFL playoffs where pretty much everyone gets in. How is college football any different? What where there like 72 bowl games!? Actually there were 34 but they are looking at adding 5 more next year. I guess only having 68 teams play in bowl game wasn’t enough for the NCAA.

- With such prestigious bowls as the Chick-A-Fil Bowl, Meineke Car Care Bowl and Gaylord Hotels Music City Bowl, I’ve decided that next year I will sponsor 2 of my own college bowl games: the “Rider Prophet Bowl” and the “Everyone Stupid Enough To Watch This Is A Douche Bag Bowl”… from what I hear the NCAA is very interested in this proposal.

Finally, I’ll end with CFL Ins and Outs

In: Otis Floyd (free agent signing)
Hmm... Knowlton and now Otis Floyd… Hamilton is running out of room to steal all our linebackers like some had predicted.

In: Calvin McCarty, Kevin Challenger (re-signed)
For me the re-signing of McCarty is a strong indication that Jesse Lumsden will indeed become an Eskimo. Last season Hamilton had ratio problems when Lumsden played. When he subbed out for his Import back-up, Hamilton had to juggle their O-line. Given that the Esks already have a Canadian feature back they won’t have this same problem. Plus, Lumsden’s fragility won’t be an issue in Edmonton as they only run the ball 3 times a game and that’s about on pace with how many carries Lumsden can handle per season.

In: OL Luc Brodeur-Jourdain, RB Jonathan Lapointe and WR Darnerien McCants (signed for 2009)
While I know relatively little about Darnerien McCants (other than he’s played in the NFL as well as a brief stint with Hamilton) but if I were a GM I would shy away from a guy with the last name McCants… just seems like he has a preordained fate… as evidenced by the fact that he wasn’t good enough for Hamilton.

Out: Chuck Winters (retired)
Yet another news story out of Toronto that the rest of country could care less about… Go figure.

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