New CFL footballs will be flying around practice fields and stadiums across the country in 2018 and beyond.
3DownNation insider Justin Dunk reported the possibility last September.
“We are currently delivering to our teams a ball that is slightly different from the one we’ve used in the past,” said Ryan Janzen, senior director of football operations for the CFL.
“The new ball is virtually identical, to the eye, to the old one. It has the same laces and markings including our stripes. But it is made of a slightly harder leather. Our partners at Wilson say that allows it to hold its pebbles better.”
Each team had samples of the new footballs throughout 2017 – distributed in April and kept highly secretive – that were made to the same standards as pigskins used in the NFL. Sources say the move makes the balls easier to throw and catch, which should improve scoring.
According to the league, the new balls have “the laces, stripes and other markings of the old CFL ball but the leather and size of the NFL ball.”
“A new, improved and unique CFL ball has been created. And it is being delivered to our clubs now,” Janzen said.