The Toronto Argonauts' last two short-yardage quarterbacks of note are now members of the Saskatchewan Roughriders.
• The Saskatchewan Roughriders now boast two of the elite short-yardage quarterbacks in Toronto Argonauts history. The Roughriders’ current marquee player, Cody Fajardo, scored the winning touchdown on a one-yard sneak in the CFL’s 2017 East Division final, in which Toronto defeated Saskatchewan 25-21. The following year, James Franklin — who was signed by the Roughriders last week — scored 14 touchdowns, tying a CFL single-season record for rushing touchdowns by a quarterback that was originally established by the B.C. Lions’ Doug Flutie in 1991.
• The Canadian Football Hall of Fame’s selection committee recently concluded its deliberations regarding the Class of 2020. Please allow me to reiterate the hope that former Roughriders slotback Jeff Fairholm will be enshrined, at long last. Fairholm’s career stats are comparable in many ways to 2019 inductee David Williams. Plus, Fairholm is a Canadian. That should count for something. So should the similarities between Fairholm’s stats and those of former Winnipeg Blue Bombers slotback Joe Poplawski, who is in the Hall of Fame.
• Roughriders legend Joey Walters was a far better receiver than Williams.
• Issues near the goal line, in terms of play-calling and execution, were the primary reason why the Roughriders lost 20-13 to the Winnipeg Blue Bombers in the CFL’s 2019 West Division final. Following the season, the Green and White opted to move on from offensive co-ordinator Stephen McAdoo, hiring Jason Maas. Well, guess what? With Maas calling the plays last season, the Edmonton Eskimos were eighth among nine teams in red-zone percentage. The Roughriders were tied for sixth.
• Last week, the Vancouver Canucks retired the numbers of Henrik and Daniel Sedin, igniting a debate as to whether the twins belong in the Hockey Hall of Fame. Of course they do! When the likes of Dick Duff and Bob Pulford have been enshrined as players, what reasonable grounds are there for excluding the Sedins?
• The stain caused by the Houston Astros’ rampant cheating will not begin to disappear until commissioner Rob Manfred does the right thing and simply vacates the 2017 World Series title. It strains credulity to assert that the Astros, who contravened the rules with their elaborate usage of electronic sign-stealing, won that championship fair and square. It doesn’t help that many Astros employees have redefined “disingenuous” with their half-hearted, unconvincing apologies.
• How is it possible that Sidney Crosby, who still looks like a fresh-faced teenager, is in his 15th NHL season?
• TSN’s coverage of the Scotties Tournament of Hearts is exceptional, as always. Nobody describes the live action of any sport better than Vic Rauter.
• Listening to Russ Howard break down a curling match is reminiscent of Ron Lancaster talking about football.
• TSN is the CFL’s sole rights-holder. So why doesn’t TSN do a live show during the early hours of the league’s free-agency period? If the network can devote endless hours to the perennial disappointment that is the NHL’s trade deadline, surely a program could be built around the CFL.
• A better idea for the NBA’s slam-dunk completion: Raise the rim, a la high jumping, as the contest progresses. If someone can jam on an 11-foot-tall basket, I want to see it.
• Nice people who deserve a plug: Scotty Jenkins, Zach Wytinck, Rebecca Dube, Orville Off, Guy Lafleur, Dave Stubbs, Jennifer Ackerman, Jay Bouwmeester, Derek Hassen and Carter Haroldson.