September 3, 2007
Eskimos recall Battle of Alberta memories
CALGARY -- Dan Comiskey put it best.
The Edmonton Eskimos veteran offensive lineman has the perfect description of the Labour Day Battle of Alberta - which is renewed again today at McMahon Stadium.
"It is just a collage of hatred," said Comiskey, when asked to give his best memory of the annual Edmonton-Calgary battle.
"The whole thing is awesome."
Although the Eskimos are loaded with newcomers to the 2007 edition this afternoon (2 p.m., CBC, CHED), there are some veterans of this classic series in the locker-room.
Here are some examples of the best or most memorable moments from recent Labour Day tilts.
A.J. GASS ...
A.J. Gass, Edmonton linebacker, entering his eighth Labour Day game: "I remember he (Doug Peterson) got ejected from a game down there after fighting with a few guys and went in the locker-room and kicked the heater in the Calgary locker-room and broke his foot and missed like six weeks."
KAMAU PETERSON ...
Kamau Peterson, Edmonton receiver, who has played in two Labour Day games with Calgary: "The one that sticks out is Terry Vaughn coming into Calgary (in 2002) and he didn't do a lot in the first half.
"But then somebody made him mad. I think Kelly Malveaux started talking (trash) to him and then he started going crazy.
"He was running people over. He hurdled somebody. And after every catch he would just drop the ball right on the DB."
DANNY MACIOCIA ...
Danny Maciocia, Edmonton head coach: "My first one as a head coach - that two-point convert (play in 2005).
"That is the one that sticks out. They had just gone in to score and I think they needed to convert (a) two-point convert to tie the game.
"I remember it was (Cedric) Scott who came clean and made a tremendous play where he tracked down Henry (Burris) and hit him up for a quarterback sack and then they kicked the on-side. We recovered and the game was over."
Newly acquired receiver Quentin McCord was keeping busy in Georgia tinting paint for a company. With a three-year contract with the Esks, he has resigned from the job.
In a smart move by the Eskimos, they have placed Fred Stamps on the disabled list so his entire salary doesn't count toward the $4.05-million cap. Due to the nature of his non-football injury - appendix surgery - he is clearly allowed on that list, with only 60% of his salary counting toward the cap.
If everything goes according to the Eskimos marketing playbook, the club will launch its new-look website (www.esks.com) tomorrow.
"It's far more fan-friendly," said Esks communication director Dave Jamieson.
While fans should be able to find audio clips on the new site, the long-term plan is to have video of Danny Maciocia's media conferences available.
BY THE NUMBERS
LABOUR DAY CLASSIC EDITION
Number of Eskimos victories on the road in the last two seasons. The club is 3-10 during this stretch away from home.
The number of decisions Edmonton head coach Danny Maciocia has to make on players coming off the nine-game injured roster. Both DE Brandon Guillory and K Warren Kean are due to come off the list after today's game.
It has been that many years since the Eskimos had a winning record in the month of September.
The Esks have given up that many points in the last three minutes of the first half this year.
For three straight years, the Esks have posted just one win in the month of August.
That's the most number of points Edmonton has ever scored in the Labour Day classic. That came in 1986.
The Eskimos don't want to see the Calgary Stampeders score on their first possession today. The Stamps are undefeated this season in the four games (3-0-1) when they score on their first drive.
That is Sean Fleming's punting average entering this weekend's action - placing him third in the league.