Kickoff promises fireworks

IAN BUSBY, SUN MEDIA

, Last Updated: 9:58 AM ET

Pigskin fans can start calling it Canada Football Day.

The CFL will kick off its season July 1 with the defending Grey Cup champion Calgary Stampeders facing the Montreal Alouettes at McMahon Stadium in a rematch of last year's title game.

That game kicks off at 8 p.m. and is part of a doubleheader on TSN.

"It's a great day to kick off the Canadian Football League," said Stampeders president Scott Ackles said.

"That gives us a great opportunity to have a great fireworks show."

Calgary returns to Montreal Thanksgiving Day for one of only two afternoon outings this season.

Fourteen of the Stamps' 18 regular-season games are on Fridays or Saturdays.

The Stamps face the Eskimos four times, while they meet the Saskatchewan Roughriders three times, including twice at McMahon, and the B.C. Lions three times.

The CFL has also switched its playoff games back to Sundays after one season staging them on Saturdays.

The Grey Cup will be at McMahon Stadium Nov. 29.

EXTRA POINT

The Stampeders have called a news conference today to officially announce the retirement of quarterback Dave Dickenson.

The 2000 CFL Most Outstanding Player missed the second half of last season with concussion symptoms.


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