On anonymous sources and naiveté

During my nine seasons covering the Hamilton Tiger-Cats I have been called many things including sycophant, pot-stirrer, hack, shill and several others not necessarily suitable for a family-friendly website. But until Monday, I’d never been called “naïve.”

That was the term Ticat owner Bob Young used in reference to my story on player complaints about Hamilton vice-president of football operations and former head coach Kent Austin. He also referred to the players quoted as “cowardly.”

Bob’s concerns, spelled out in more detail in subsequent Tweets, surrounded my use of anonymous sources in the story, a decision that a number of readers and fans questioned as well. His point, I think, was that providing anonymity allowed for the possibility that I was being manipulated by players for their own purposes; essentially that I was allowing them to publicly grind their axes to the nub under a cloak of darkness.

Using anonymous sources on a story like this is always a difficult decision. Over the years covering this team, and in my career in general, I have tried to limit my use of them to situations where I felt it was unavoidable: where the source was vulnerable to physical violence or severe economic harm – losing their job or damaging their reputation. The lack of accountability does offer the potential for abuse and part of my role is to do my very best to make sure the credibility and motivation of my sources is legitimate – and that information is supported by other facts, sources and knowledge. If I felt this was one or two disgruntled players with clear biases against Austin, I would have never done the story.

Bob’s comments about the players are, in my opinion, more problematic. Players who take to the field in pro football are called all kinds of things – stand behind the visitors’ bench at Tim Hortons Field for a family-unfriendly sampling – but to question their courage in any capacity will not be well received. Speaking out about concerns with those in positions of authority, even anonymously, is not an easy thing to do.

The article was, however, far from perfect. Ticats management were upset that it did not provide more context behind the John Chick and C.J. Gable trades – the source of the “sabotage” comment – which were certainly defensible within a wider perspective of football operations: there were replacements in-house and salary cap implications to consider. That comment from Austin and the club wasn’t included was also a source of concern, though Ticat higher ups certainly had their say in the various follow ups here and here and here. In my experience, the perspective of management is generally well reflected, the true feelings of players less so.

There is also the contention that the article was in some way motivated by some personal animus towards Austin. We’ve had some testy public exchanges, mostly following close losses, that have given some a distorted view on what has generally been a constructive working relationship.

I was well aware, however, that this story had the potential to damage that relationship as well as others within the Ticats organization – relationships that are valuable in the commission of my duties as a beat reporter and some of which have taken me years to build. I did the story anyway, which should be at least some indication as to how important I felt it was.

Bob and I have clashed on social media a few times over the years but the vast majority of both our public and personal communication has been respectful and positive. I think he’s been, and continues to be, a tremendous owner for the Ticats, someone who saved the franchise and now has it in a position long-term economic stability. He has, unnecessarily, apologized for the personal nature of his criticism of my story while standing by his concerns. My guess is that his contention that anonymous sources have jeopardized the value and flow of important information – important issues worthy of debate and discussion – got lost in the inherent flippancy of social media and Bob’s sometimes colloquial style.

In the same way that I saw the story as part of my responsibility as a journalist, so are the criticisms and potential consequences. As with most things, I see the humour in it: my brother is threatening to make me a #NaiveJournalist t-shirt for Christmas.

That’s about as close to naïve as I think I can get.

Drew Edwards

Drew Edwards

Drew Edwards is into his eighth season covering the CFL and the Ticats for the Hamilton Spectator. He is the founder and editor of 3DownNation.
Drew Edwards
Drew Edwards
About Drew Edwards (1570 Articles)
Drew Edwards is into his eighth season covering the CFL and the Ticats for the Hamilton Spectator. He is the founder and editor of 3DownNation.

70 Comments on On anonymous sources and naiveté

  1. Bill deHoog // November 8, 2017 at 9:06 am //

    I see no issue with your story Drew…from a Redblacks fan!

  2. I just think they’ve gotta stop looking for the lint in the bellybutton, and start thinking and acting pro-actively.

    We’re losing sight of a whole bunch of important questions. For instance;

    Why are we questioning Masoli’s fitness as a starter in this league? He’s thrown for 3200 yds, 15 TDs with 5 picks, and is 1st at his position, and 10th in the league in rushing, while doing this in 12 games as a starter. He’s 2nd in the league in TD/interception ratio, just behind Nicholls, and 1st in the league in interception % at 1.3%, just ahead of Nicholls 1.4%. In contrast Ray has a 1.6% stat, Harris is 1.9, while Mitchell and Reilly are 2.0%. His completion % is mundane, but he’s the only QB in the league that went through a COMPLETE system change when he was named a starter. (CFL Website stats)

    Wonder how the other “Superstars” would have fared under that pressure?

    AND, – he’s DURABLE!

    • You are absolutely right , George. there are a lot of other positives to build on as well. As fans, we have the right to be upset but we should also be supportive and encouraging when the team does the right thing and shows that it can go forward in the right direction

    • “Why are we questioning Masoli’s fitness as a starter in this league?”

      Because a quarterback cannot be judged on statistics alone. This it football, not fantasy football. Reasons for wanting him back as a back-up, where he belongs:

      -His throwing mechanics, which leads to his maddening accuracy issues. He throws every ball off his back foot instead of stepping into the throw.
      -The numerous time-count violations inside of three minutes which have killed efforts to come from behind or kill the clock to protect the lead.
      -His lack of situational awareness, from allowing the clock to run out at the end of a half drive earlier this season when driving to kick a field goal, to taking forever to throw into triple-coverage on the last play of the Saskatchewan home game, instead of hitting the wide-open Brandon banks over the middle that should have been his first read, to the inexplicable low-percenatge passes he bounced near the end of the last Ottawa game when all we needed was to keep the clock moving to win the game. Over and over, when he needs to make smart decisions, he fails.
      -his abysmal Red Zone performance, which is a combination of points 1 & 3.

      When the pressure rises, it gets to Masoli. He gets flustered and makes poor decisions. He’s the quarterback where all he’s gonna do is break your heart.

      • You think that he’s played enough that by now he should be over those things?

        I’m not being sarcastic, I’m really asking as someone who hasn’t watched him as much. A lot of those things sound like issues that *should* fade with experience but he has quite a few games under his belt by now, doesn’t he?

        • CC Rider, I agree that a quarterback who’s been in the league five years like Masoli has should have grown out of these issues. Coaching and film study should have molded and shaped him into a refined passer.

          That it hasn’t already means he’s never going to be more than he is: an outstanding back-up and a fringe starter.

      • You are so wrong.

      • I can’t agree with many of your comments. One interception in how many games, and performed well in some tough games against the Stamps and Bombers? I don’t want to see Collaros go, as I think he would thrive under June Jones system, utillizing a running game, but I think Masoli is starter calibre. I think he will test the market and get a starting gig somewhere else…

    • Amen George. Excellent post on Masoli.

    • Eddiefelson // November 8, 2017 at 7:15 pm //

      Yes george- some great numbers there. If jones offense can make a hack look that good- what could it do for a star? I.e.zach

  3. I don’t think you need an anonymous source to tell you Kent Austin’s time has come. He was a horrible coach this year and players have tuned him out. Personally I think it’s a mistake to be head coach and GM and clearly he was bad at both this season.

    • While I don’t disagree that he was doing too much, I am puzzled why fans keep claiming he was GM. Tillman took that role in early 2016.

      Are fan not paying attention to their team?

      • Tillman doesn’t go to the bathroom without KA approval. Don’t kid yourself, KA is in charge.

  4. But Drew, you are naive. Nine years covering a CFL team in a small Canadian city means you’re still just a baby, in terms of experience.

    Write this kind of article about the Leafs in Toronto or the Yankees in NYC and see how well it is received. I’m a Bomber fan but an article like this should have never seen the light of day.

    • Interesting perspective, Adam

    • There’s no reason for it to not see the light of day if Drew is legitimately convinced of its accuracy, regardless of market, size of fanbase, etc.

      That said, if there is also a core of players saying that they would run through a wall for Austin, that point of view has to be given equal time.

  5. There was and is no problem with you’re reporting Drew, for this story (Austin’s “mutiny”). or any other story you have issued under the 3downnation articles. To be called naive? Could have been worse, getting criticized for reporting the truths? Of course you’re not going to expose the sources. And of course you’re not going to name actual.players. That would be journalistic suicide. Some or most fans want their football news sugar coated or see and hear through rose coloured glasses. If the stories are based on speculation, and aren’t accurate or true, then there’s reason for concern. But just reporting the Ti-Cat news as it occurrs and happens, there’s nothing wrong. As far as Kent Austin is concerned, I remember hearing in one press briefing, he said he doesn’t follow the media or social media. But at his last press conference, he said he had read you’re piece, regarding the dissension and certain disgruntled players, who stated they might not come back or ‘Re-sign with the club if Kent Austin did return. So Austin was and is aware of the media writings. Just to Me, at that last press conference he had the audacity to take credit, for the turn around in the season. Because he brought in June Jones and Lolley. Don’t envy you’re job of writing about the Ti-Cats, especially when they’re losing. Keep up the great work, I for one enjoy you’re column and the 3downnation posts.

  6. Austin is a real jeckyl and hyde. A prick on the sidelines but sugary sweet with the club president and owner. He knows how to manipulate ppl

    • NotJoshSmith // November 9, 2017 at 1:36 am //

      Bingo, Bango @BC !

    • Agree. Theres is a real smug two face personality that was created around Kent Austins profile. His mess is his mess. Bob Youngs team is his office.They do for sure blame other people alot for thier actions.

  7. BigRedMachine // November 8, 2017 at 10:22 am //

    I think the players actions while Austin was HC speak louder than words….

    • richinbanff (Rich Wilson) // November 11, 2017 at 11:35 pm //

      Most definitely. The game in Calgary was a loud “F-You” to Austin, and probably Collaros as well. The Cats didn’t show up. Worst effort I have seen in almost 30 years of watching.

  8. Drew, I’m glad you did your job, as a journalist. There is a forced intimacy which you need to navigate in your job that is probably quite difficult for many readers to realize. From having read ykubfkr years and Steve for longer, and after reading his column yesterday—I’m very sure you followed professional standards with your column.
    As a fan, the article helped bring me inside- and I appreciated that.

    My respect and appreciation for BobY dropped a notch with his tweets. Even tho it is he who saved us from the darkness and he is definitely allowed to say and do what he wants because he’s bought that right— it’s up to me about how this impacts my view of him and the Cats.
    It’s loaded for me, because it’s a big part of my life. Through this, somehow, we need the best quality team on the field— so we can pickup where we left off from.

  9. While you alude to the problem of not explaining the trades, the bigger issue is the reference to Banks not wanting to return if KA is still in position as related by another player. You should have confirmed this with Banks or left it out of the article all together – this innuendo places both Speedy B and Kent Austin in an awkward position and might just be a factor in future negotiations and (hopefully not) possibly lead to the departure of a much improved football player.

    • See, I actually agree with this, and I was supportive of the article as a whole. Thanks for saying what I was thinking.

    • The Iceman // November 8, 2017 at 12:04 pm //

      To me the whole story is not that uncommon. I remember a quote from a famous coach.
      “1/3rd of the team loves me, 1/3 hates me, my job is to keep the 1/3rd that hates me away from the 1/3rd that are undecided”
      And yes my problem is the Banks comment. An unnamed source quoting a player is off side. I mean maybe Banks said it to a team mate but when push comes to shove really doesn’t feel that strongly about it. I say things to coworkers that I wouldn’t want my boss to hear and most of it is tongue in cheek.

      • Nice cool summary Iceman.This is a great story a nice,naive,and young journalist discovers wolfman-dracula like monster in the Cat’s locker room.A case for the X-files.
        Add in a notorious, rich playboy star and this next season is a journalist’s dream.
        This comment is not intended to gloss over any real problem.I wish the Cats a great next season and the fans are lucky to have Bob Young as the owner.Drew has created a great web-site that Hamilton can be proud of.

  10. I have no issue with the decisions Drew made. Good journalism means making tough calls sometimes – you can’t always just write what people want you to write. If he made a habit of fabricating things he wouldn’t have lasted in this field, so I think we have to believe what he says about there being a real basis for this story.

  11. Try telling Woodward and Bernstein they are naive for using anonymous sources.
    Every veteran journalist has used anonymous sources. The key is using sources that are credible and trustworthy. When you have several players complaining about one individual there must be something to it, especially when the known facts (0-8 record versus 6-4 under Jones with the same lineup) show there is likely something to their argument. People who make generalized comments that journalists shouldn’t use anonymous sources are the ones who are naive and should look at all the wrongdoing by governments, corporations and individuals that have been exposed by anonymous tipsters. It never ceases to amaze me how many critics out there are stupid and ignorant.

  12. Re the anonymous sources and whether or not there is dissension on the team: I live in SK & I have heard stories about problems w/Austin & the locker room for months now – from both of our local radio stations & fr some TSN reporters.

    Probably if you ask other CFL fans in other provinces they also heard the stories. I find it hard to believe that with all the stories, there is no truth to them.

    Sad thing is that I’m not sure if Bob Young will take any steps to correct the problem. I realize that as a business man he has to publicly defend his employees but something needs to be done before the cancer in the locker room gets worse.

    CFL needs all teams to be healthy – not sure that the Cats will be if Austin remains with the team.

  13. To date, … and from what all I can recall of your articles … You have always stuck to the facts. Sometimes one has to protect sources from
    possible repercussions that might likely be the result of arrogant self centered “my way or the highway ” attitudes so prevalent in many ownership mindsets … it may not be the risk/concern here ? … but to error on the side of caution while still trying to provide insight to a festering issue, is wise. As one Tiger Cat fan I thank you for the work you do. Best wishes.

  14. Tiger Chick // November 8, 2017 at 11:24 am //

    My comment on this situation is under moderation for some reason so I’m not sure if it showed up above to everyone or not. That said, a gripping article about Manziel sporting a Dad Bod has just surfaced. Needless to say, we need to move on and sign our team as it is now before we are the laughing stock of the CFL.

  15. Drew, your article confirmed what I’ve been suspecting for over a year. No apology required. Except maybe from Austin to the fans for treating his players like dirt and running a predictable offense that didn’t feature enough of a run game to keep any defense honest. No wonder he almost got his golden boy Collaros killed. Gonna be really interesting to see how many veterans we’re going to be able to resign in the off season now. Other than Tasker, who likes his commute, who else can we count on to hang around given what the sort of unbreathable working atmosphere Austin has been generating?

  16. Hi Drew,
    My comment is awaiting moderation.
    My comments are not inflammatory or bigoted.
    Am I using the wrong terms?

    • George Porge // November 8, 2017 at 1:40 pm //

      The only constant I’ve been able to see with 3Down’s weird auto-moderator is that if you post anything that looks like an internet address, it will go into moderation. Outside of that, it’s anyone’s guess what causes it.

      Would be nice if they just did away with their homegrown comments system and used a ready-made one that they could link to their articles (CFL uses Facebook’s comments engine now, for example, and I think others have used the Disqus one which, in my opinion, is one of the better ones).

  17. Brandon Walsh // November 8, 2017 at 12:03 pm //

    Donna Martin graduates !!!!

  18. what a bunch of whiners this site has created ,all you cry babys do is come hear and snivel ,get a life !!!

  19. All I know is that we started off 0 and 8 changed coaches and went 6 and 4. Get our free agents signed and get better for next year. We had 5 days between games when we had to play Ottawa and we ran out of gas in the second half or we’d be in the playoffs today. We should be writing some positive stories about next year instead of stirring up crapola.

    • Nobody does “alternate reality” like a TiCats fan.

    • Agree with the sign Jones and free agents.

      The idea that the loss to the RedBlacks made the difference for making the playoffs is bunk. The Cats missed by five points so taking away two points from the RedBlacks to give them to the Cats leaves the Cats out of the playoffs by one point.

      At minimum, they’d have needed to beat at least two of the Riders, Argos, Stampeders and RedBlacks.

  20. Keep up the good work Drew.

  21. And I do agree, overall, Bob Young has been a great owner. Thanks goodness he showed up.

  22. Ah gee, gosh, golly whiz dang Drew, ignore that capped man behind the curtain already and let the playground politics unfold like we tell you they should…and you call yourself a whatever it is you do? – Bob from Oz – 🙂

  23. Drew, you should win an award for Most Outstanding Media Member. As more traditional, sources of media are dying off, you have put forward 3DownNation which give us fans an entirely different kind of media than what is run on our team websites or the CFL one. It is great to get these stories. Some of them I don’t agree with (Nichols and Harris are the CFL’s two MOPs), but I am glad they are here to give information and insight to the CFL community.

    It would be a desert without 3DownNation.

  24. Sea of Dead // November 8, 2017 at 3:50 pm //

    Drew, virtually all of us appreciate your coverage of the Cats and the information/comments on this site. Your article simply supported what many of us already suspected was behind an 0-8 record … Austin lost the room in 2016 and that carried through to 2017.

    The only NAIVE person based on what I’ve read recently appears to be the Caretaker who said that Austin is likely the greatest coach in CFL history … or is there a water-boarding mechanism in the team box that made him come up with that ridiculous remark.

    It’s about time that the owner managed his team like a REAL businessman … If you don’t meet agreed upon reasonable objectives, then you are warned and if it happens again you are let go. The Cats were pathetic in 2016 under Austin and even worse at 0-8 to start 2017. There isn’t a business that would re-up a coach for another 3 years at the money Austin is getting after his 2016 performance and calling him the greatest CFL coach in history is absolutely absurd. Failure in 2016 followed by even worse performance in 2017 calls for immediate termination, NOT unjustified praise.

    Keep up the great work, Drew!!

    • Agree with all your points Sea of Dead, plus I would add that it’s very naive of Bob Young not to think that at least a portion of the team has a real problem with Kent Austin. just go back and look at how they played the first 8 games. Sure, every pro sports team has a few guys that don’t like the coach but there’s too many willing to speak out and corroboration of Drew’s comments from both Milton and Ferguson, 2 other guys around the team a lot. Maybe Bob and Kent get along great but that doesn’t mean the players like Kent. I think Bob and Scott Mitchell need to be careful how they handle this situation and take a real objective view of Austin’s role (if any) going forward

      • These players are pros they play to the best of their ability whether they like the coach or not.Your posting may be a bit misleading.

        • Sea of Dead // November 10, 2017 at 4:19 pm //

          And that was finely displayed when the Cats went 0-8 under Austin to start the season. Really, pal! LOL And I suspect we’ll see the NGFN back on the sidelines where he really wants to be soon enough for a repeat performance just to test your theory.

  25. Austin must have a guaranteed contract and Bob Young doesn’t want to pay the remaining 2 years of his salary for Austin to just to walk away.

    I’m grateful Bob Young saved the Tiger-Cats and bought them but his 5 year plan is now on year 14 without a Grey Cup.

  26. Lindsay Wilcox // November 8, 2017 at 5:37 pm //

    Bob Young and Drew – you are both very passionate (as you should be) re your roles vis-a-vis the Ticats. Bob, as Caretaker, you must protect your product from all external crap. Drew, as a journalist, you must report on what is going on, and WHY – even if that means grating on the nerves of some. Drew, from time-to-time you must report on speculations that border on legal hearsay/gossip -and you always add a phrase indicating that the preceding/following comment is 3rd hand. Bob, you must look at those reports/comments, via Mitchell, Austin, June Jones to determine what is really an issue and what is not. Respectfully submitted.

  27. Janet Boyd // November 8, 2017 at 5:56 pm //

    Drew its been noted that you strong dislike Kent Austin for awhile but there are players who really like Kent Austin why are you not printing that. In Ottawa the tiger cats won their 2nd win and who was there to congratulate the players was Kent Austin by the doors. It was shown on YouTube. That is where I saw it. Kent Austin brought in players like Brandon Banks in 2013 and many other great players who are still with the cats. Jerimiah was given a chance to become a great quarterback after Collaros. He was sign as a free agent 2 years ago but stay many years with the cats. IF he didn’t like Austin he would walk away 2 years when he was a free agent.
    Bob Young is defending Kent Austin as a respect person he work with for many years. I like Kent Austin and love my Tiger cats for more than 20 years and that can’t be change after a rough beginning. True fans will always support the team. This is my opinion and you don’t have to agree with it but it how I feel. Thank you

  28. Drew
    Without a named source you don’t have much credibility…..

  29. What I’d like to know is….did these players all seek Drew out and then did all of them just bring up the fact that they won’t be back if Austin is still here OR did Drew seek them out and ask them all individually if they’d re-sign if Austin was still going to be VP

  30. Peter Griffin // November 8, 2017 at 6:48 pm //

    Do we know if some players just don’t want Kent as their coach, or is it that they don’t want him with the Cats in “any” capacity – which he currently is? In the business world we might wish our direct supervisor was gone, but do we have the right to suggest that the CEO of the company (who we have no direct dealings with) should be gone? We need some/most of these guys back, and hopefully June Jones will also return – then I think this team is ready to really show their stuff.

  31. Anthony Kaduck // November 8, 2017 at 8:31 pm //

    Drew, ignore the nay-sayers and keep doing what you’re doing.

  32. Ticat Mike // November 8, 2017 at 8:57 pm //

    Good job Drew. Keep up the good work.

  33. solara2000 // November 8, 2017 at 9:02 pm //

    I want to say thanks to both Drew and to Bob. Thank you for your passion for the Ticat’s.
    Thank you for caring. Thank you for doing your respective parts in making the TiCats relevant. Thank you for making them an important part of your community. Thank you for valuing the CFL.
    With appreciation, thank you from a TiCat fan living in Kelowna, B.C.

  34. Anonymous – Just fake news. Lazy reporting.
    Let’s make up some more!
    It a least gets some headlines.
    Journalism used to have integrity.

    • Being that unnamed sources probably go back as far as actual journalism does, nothing has changed. You just have to ask yourself whether you feel the journalist has credibility/integrity.

      There’s nothing wrong with questioning a claim. But dismissing it outright because you don’t like it is no better than taking everything you read at face value.

  35. “Around half a dozen or so sports reporters have told me that Drew is trying to sabotage the Tiger Cats and CFL journalism. They say that Milty won’t write for the Spec anymore if he shows up next year.”
    Look how stupid it is to pass that off as journalism.
    Its is plain scandal mongering, which Drew seems to like. Good for him, but come on don’t pass it off as journalism. You have anonymour sources making serious allegations and can’t get anyone on the record at all? You can’t get a quote or a refusal of quote from Banks.
    Strikes me as pretty low for someone to throw Banks name out there but won’t come forward with their name and it appears a few players tweets seem to think the same thing.
    Its a shame but the real story here is that Drew took a cheap and unverifiable road to create a scandal where none existed.

    • It’s stupid because you quite literally have no credibility. I have no idea who you are and have absolutely no reason to believe you.

      However, I’ve seen Drew at work for years, I’ve seen the work he puts in and the research that he does. He DOES have credibility and while I won’t believe absolutely everything he writes just because he writes it, I’ll certainly give it more consideration than I would some random comment or message board posting like yours. That’s where your example fails.

  36. canadianfootballfan // November 9, 2017 at 12:00 am //

    Don’t bite the hand that feeds you, Drew. The team is your meal ticket. Even more than your actual employer.

  37. So the story is really about something subjective like the reporters credibility. Reinforces the point that Drew was sloppy and got lazy on this article.
    His reporting has become the issue not the common story that Austin lost the locker room (which was pretty clear to any who watched post game press).
    But if folks want to rally round him that’s their business, just don’t claim this as some normal journalism. Using anonymous sources and not verifying the hearsay or allegations made (sabotage or speedy refusing to return – both easy to try and verify) is what national enquirer and Fox news pass off as journalism.

  38. Ticat Mike // November 9, 2017 at 7:41 pm //

    In my comment that awaits “moderation” for some reason I said that Young is the one who is naive for thinking Austin is one of Cats best coach ever. Nowhere close. I’ll take Trimble, Sazio, Williams, Bruno and Lancaster over KA. More distrubing is Young’s blind faith in Mitchell and senior braintrust who have not achieved results. If Young thinks the CAts are championship calibre , we are doomed.

  39. Ticat Mike // November 9, 2017 at 7:43 pm //

    LOL..let me throw in Frank Kush too……had a great year — played sound fundamental football, coached a great team — and I still remember the damn play that doomed the team in the playoffs against the then Ottawa Roughies. Fluky but a killer.

  40. I think Drew does miss the mark every now and then (and yes, I know in my work I do too…). He CAN write a very good article, but some times his line of post game questioning is a little thin. I DO think he didn’t word that article the best, regarding unnamed players, etc., and someone questioning the relationship between Jones and Austin, that it appears may have been inaccurate. I do think it is a fine line being the beat guy for a team, that close to the ‘inners’ of the team, and having to put out a piece regularly, that some bits get out that maybe should have been sat on for a few days first…
    I have no problem with what Bob Young said. He knows a lot about publishing and writing. He’s had a few messes to deal with this year, and defended his own, as good employers should, when they believe in their staff.

  41. and I will add, the Cats obviously are realistically closer to resembling the 6-4 team that finished the season than the 0-8 team, which DOES make them cup contenders, when you look at how they fared against Winnipeg and Calgary down the stretch. Retaining Jones, and the core (in my opinion with either Collaros
    starting or Masoli) and they will be a playoff team next year.

  42. Ummmmm I dont think any 3 teams will be in the playoffs in the east for the next few years , unless MTL remains the hot mess they are in the east and a free space on the bingo card. Why do I say that , wellllllllll : its going to take a 10+ win season in the east to avoid having a western team cross over . I just don’t see any of the Riders/Bombers/Esk’s or Stamps taking that huge of a step back in the off season . I cant see any other team in the east outside possibly Toronto winning 5+ games against the western teams . So even if a eastern team sweeps all games vs east that is 6 wins, ergo a minimum of 4 wins vs west is needed for a 10 total. That means a split with each western team in season series. Not impossible but not probable .

  43. It is time to say goodbye to Austin…
    Will that happen, sadly probably not.
    His lack of vision…regarding the Team as a whole, his failure to step aside sooner
    as H/C, and I could go on and on..
    Kent also plays favorite’s with curtain players over others..
    That is the biggest mistake a person in his position could ever make.
    Time for him to go..bottom line.

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