Tigercatatonia has long argued for TSN to broadcast CFL pre-season games, well before TSN started broadcasting them last year. Reasons advanced were that TSN already owned the rights anyways (sure CFL production does cost something, but reasonable ratings would cover them easily), the games are a big long commercial for the season to come, and rabid fans of the Saskatchewan Rough Riders would probably tune in for both games in large amounts. Last year between TSN and TSN2, the network broadcast seven games, while this year only four (or was it five?) were broadcast.
Chris Cuthbert recently tweeted that the BC Saskatchewan game last week had over 400,000 viewers, confirming that Rider fans will tune in, especially in the pre-season when hope springs eternal. He also tweeted the Cats Argos game at Ivor Wynne got close to 336,000 fans, which is also impressive for the pre-season. That's some decent numbers and way better than the average MLS game.
I can understand why the day game yesterday for the Argos wasn't broadcast, but I can't understand why both Rider games weren't broadcast. I'm sure the second game would have gone over 400,000 as well.
Finally broadcasting the pre-season games is good for showing some interesting stories, like Canadian quarterbacks Brad Sinopoli and Kyle Quinlan being successful in their outings (unlike the heralded quart back Tate Forcier for the Ticats who revealed himself to be a wang).