Friday, February 28, 2014

Boom! Ticats Want $1 Million Per Game If Stadium Delayed

Tigercatatonia has been posting and wondering about what the current construction state the new Tim Horton's Field with all the bad winter weather. It was announced in January that the stadium was two weeks behind and it has been nothing but unseasonably cold weather since the announcement and early March is looking unseasonably cold as well.

Now we have a bit more information about what happens if the stadium is delayed past the first scheduled CFL game in July. From a Spec article:

The Hamilton Tiger-Cats will be looking to recover at least $1 million for every home game they miss if the new Pan Am stadium is not completed on time.
Infrastructure Ontario says Ontario Sports Solutions — the consortium building the $145-million stadium — is on the hook for the costs if the team can't play its first scheduled home game at Tim Hortons Field on July 26. 

 At least the city isn't on the hook for that, but the province. With a potential million dollar penalty per game that at least gives an incentive to the province to get the work done faster, although in theory they could pay only nine million if the stadium isn't ready for the regular season, which in the grand scheme of cost overruns isn't that much.

Where would the Cats play if they can't play at Tim Horton's? Mac? Quite small and couldn't get a fraction of the season ticket holders. Guelph again? Maybe. Are the temp stands even still up? Expect after winter is finally done to find out a better estimate of how delayed the stadium is.

Thursday, February 27, 2014

Hamilton Council Approves Ticat Tim Horton Lease in 9 to 7 Vote

Here's the Spec article with the pertinent details. The raw numbers:

The deal, approved 9-7 late Wednesday after a long session behind closed doors, is worth $750,000 a year to the city for naming rights for Tim Hortons Field, as well as $450,000 in football rent and another $150,000 if a professional soccer team comes to town.

By contrast, the Ticats paid less than $30,000 in rent for the team's final year playing at Ivor Wynne Stadium. 

So at least the city is doing a lot better off than off Ivor Wynne. There's been reports the naming rights were worth between $1 million and $1.5 million per year so the city is getting a large proportion (but so would the team). I don't think this is a bad deal for the city, although I don't want to be a Scott Mitchell apologist either. The fact Lloyd Ferguson voted against it is interesting. Also how it compares to other deals in the CFL, like say Ottawa.

Tuesday, February 25, 2014

Montreal Alouettes Sign Tom Higgins as New Head Coach

The Alouettes hired Tom Higgins to replace GM Jim Popp, who booted his coach midway through the 2013 season (I can't even remember his name, he had something to do with Boise State) and took over the head coaching role.

Meh, I'm not that excited about the pick, but Higgins is competent and Popp will give him a good roster to work with in 2014, although a lot depends on how Troy Smith works out as a quarterback. In some ways that's more important than whoever is head coach.

Wednesday, February 12, 2014

Drew Edwards Reporting Stadium to Open July 26

The Spec's Drew Edwards is reporting that the Ticats' new Tim Horton's Field will open with a game on July 26 with the pre-season game at Ron Joyce Field at McMaster.

July 26 seems like an OK date for the first game and having the stadium done on time although currently I'm a little skeptical of whether the date will be met. A few weeks ago it was announced that the stadium was two weeks behind schedule. Since then, the weather has been awful with considerable snow and below freezing temperatures. The rest of February isn't looking great compared to weather over the last five years. How is this affecting the stadium construction?

Expect another announcement about delays from the heavy winter soon.

Tuesday, February 11, 2014

Ticats Sign Import Defensive Back Brandon Stewart

Just saw on @CFLonTSN's twitter feed that the Cats have signed former Bomber defensive back Brandon Stewart. Stewart has played eight seasons in the CFL, with his best season last year, with 47 tackles and 16 special team tackles and a pick. Played his college ball at the august institution of Eastern Arizona Junior College. Looks like a nice pickup. Unless all his tackles came from the players he was covering.

Monday, February 10, 2014

Ottawa Red Blacks to Play Home Exhbition Game in Regina

With the new stadium in Ottawa not finished, it was always a question, where will the exhibition game be played?

Well we now know. The Red Blacks twitter account announced the Ottawa home game will be played in Regina. Which makes sense for revenue maximization purposes since if you're going to have a team have two exhibition games, the Riders are the ones to have it.

Now where will Hamilton's exhibition game be?

Wednesday, February 5, 2014

2014 CFL Schedule To Be Released Next Week

Apparently according to the @CliffD Twitter feed, the commissioner of the CFL Mark Cohon announced in Ottawa that the schedule would be out next week.

I'm a bit skeptical of that, just because I think there must be a lot of uncertainty when the Ticats' Tim Horton's Field will be ready for football, especially with another wack of crappy weather in the Hammer today (I couldn't get my car out of the parking lot after yoga class today). We'll see next week I guess.

Tuesday, February 4, 2014

Ottawa REDBLACKS Signing Henry Burris?

Reports are abounding that the Ottawa Redblacks are signing former Ticat quarterback Henry Burris. A bit weird considering they already picked up Kevin Glenn in the expansion draft. Also weird that the Bombers lost out on Burris after Collaros being picked up by Hamilton.

Also weird is that Dave Campbell (@Dave_CHED) is reporting on Twitter that Burris is signing for over $400,000 (I don't think he got that much in Hamilton the last couple of years base).

On the intertubes people are speculating Ottawa trades Glenn back to Winnipeg his former team, which would be kind of amusing, although the chip on Glenn's shoulder must be reaching massive proportions by now. Glenn is a few years younger than Burris, but Ottawa must like Burris better to make this move. Or maybe they make training camp a like Glengarry Glen Ross where the winner get the starting job and the loser gets his release and no steak knives.

At least Ottawa looks like they're making an attempt to be decent in 2014. With the massive turnover that CFL rosters go over every year, the CFL is a league when in theory your team should be able to get better quickly.