The CFL is underway up here in Canada, and just as NFL fans in the States wear their team colors loud ‘n proud, so do Canadian fans.
I’m a Calgary Stampeders’s fan and have been for years, much the same as I am a Flames’ fan in the NHL. Nope, I don’t live in Calgary. I visited my cousin there a number of years ago, and we were lucky enough to attend both an NHL and a CFL game. I was hooked.
Now, don’t get me wrong, this wasn’t the first time I had attended either. I’d attended both NHL and CFL games in Vancouver, but I’d never been able to cheer for the Vancouver teams. One short visit in Calgary made me a fan for life.
So what is it about the CFL that makes me a fan? Well, in one simple word – FOOTBALL!
I know most Americans would scoff at this, considering CFL football to be less than nothing, but it’s what I grew up with, and what I’ve grown to love. Yes, I am, of course, an NFL fan as well. I was just a CFL fan first.
The season is started at the beginning of the summer and ends before Christmas, in the last week of November, with the Grey Cup. It’s the Canadian version of the Super Bowl, and the parties, food, celebrations and alcohol consumption are on par with a Super Bowl Sunday.
There are differences between the two games, most noticeably the size of the field and the number of downs. An NFL Field is 100 yards long and a CFL field is 110 yards. An NFL End zone is 10 yards deep, while the CFL is 20 yards deep. NFL has 4 downs and the CFL has only 3.
However, whatever the differences, it is still football!
See, for me, football is football, be it the NFL, CFL, local high school or a game of touch with friends. No, I’m not much of a fan of College football, but I think that is honestly because I don’t know the teams or the players and have no vested interest in cheering. Do I watch the games? Hell, yeah! Football is football! But I watch it simply for enjoyment of the game, not because I’m a huge fan of any particular team.
I guess for me, it’s like it is for the average American looking at me cheering about the CFL. They just can’t understand what I see that’s so enthralling.
The CFL has two divisions, the West and the East. There are only 8 teams. As I’ve said, the Calgary Stampeders are my favourite team. Right now they are second in the West, having split the two games they’ve played, winning and losing one each. Unfortunately, three teams in the two divisions have won 2 games. Three teams are also at 0-2.
The teams all play again this weekend, starting Thursday with Calgary challenging Winnipeg. Winnipeg is one of those teams that has already won 2 games, so Calgary will be looking to change their luck just a little.
At least the BC Lions are one of the teams currently in the basement.
If you get a chance, check out a game! You just might be pleasantly surprised.