Rob Bagg hit by drunk driver, John Chick hurt, and a few nicer thoughts to balance it out
Roughriders receiver Rob Bagg tweeted last night that his truck was totaled in an accident with a drunk driver, but that no one was hurt. That’s great news and obviously all that matters here. We all know it could have been a lot worse.
Meanwhile, down in the great state of My Name Is Florida, the “I’m Going To” Jacksonville Jaguars got pummelled at home by the San Diego Chargers. Making matters worse for the Jags, defensive end John Chick left late in the second quarter with a gruesome-looking knee injury. Chick, for those of you who just moved here from Kazakhstan, played three years for the Riders and was the CFL’s defensive player of the year in 2009 before leaving to pursue an NFL career. Just as an aside, where does Chick rank on the list of all-time most beloved Riders? Time changes all things of course but I bet right now he’d crack the Top 10 ever in a province-wide poll.
One last note on the Riders front: Hours after it was reported the Riders had received permission to interview Lions defensive coordinator (BC/DC?) Mike Benevides for their head coaching position, word leaked that Benevides will instead replace Wally Buono as Lions bench boss in 2012. Fan reaction was mixed to Benevides’ candidacy for mayor of Riderville, and many questioned Buono’s motivations when he publicly promoted Benevides as a good fit for Saskatchewan. Are some of those same people now wondering if the Riders missed the boat on Benevides? After all, Buono’s track record as GM does a pretty good job of speaking for itself.
It’s a good year to be a Battlefords North Stars fan. The SJHL-leading Stars have won 11 straight games and 20 of their last 22 (they won nine in a row earlier this year) to take a commanding lead over the second-place Humboldt Broncos in the Bauer Conference. They may as well hand the Conference regular season banner to the Stars right now and give all these teams some extra time to prepare for playoffs. It’s no slight to the Broncos either. While the Stars have had the easier schedule to date, .500 hockey from here out should clinch the conference title. Ignoring all the mathematical judo required to calculate the possibilities brought on by the God-awful loser point, if the Stars win 50 per cent (yes, 12 1/2) of their remaining games, they’ll finish with just over 80 points. To get there, the Broncos will have to win about 20 of their last 26, and hope the Stars don’t just play for the shootout. Not impossible but, realistically, it ain’t gonna happen.
And finally, the Western Major Baseball League has completed a major renovation to its scheduling and roster regulations. The short version is that all teams will play 46 games (how novel!) starting in 2012, and will be comprised entirely of active college players starting in 2013. The scheduling has been a long time coming. Having the western teams play six more games than the eastern teams made about as much sense as a Jacques Martin power play. The roster changes will likely make the league more attractive to the top tier college players, as there will be more opportunity for them to showcase their skills and, by extension, play a few more games with their teammates and friends. There will be growing pains for the teams that marketed their abundance of local players so heavily in the past, but the overall product will be better off for it in the end.