February 17, 2012
Stamps have tough early schedule
By IAN BUSBY, QMI Agency
The 2012 Calgary Stampeders will get a chance to bond early in this campaign.
After a July 1 home date with the Montreal Alouettes, the Stamps will hit the road for dates with the Toronto Argonauts and Montreal Alouettes in a six-day span.
The plan is for the team to bunk together somewhere out East for the week.
The CFL schedule released Friday is favourable to the Stamps in many ways. They have the traditional 2:30 p.m. start time for Labour Day, while six of their home dates are on either Friday or Saturday nights (three apiece).
But the Stamps will need to weather a tough early schedule.
“Usually you get something like that every year,” Stamps president Lyle Bauer said. “It seems like we have it every year early. The good news is it’s over with. At least it’s a five-day turnaround.”
Five of the first seven games are against East Division teams, which means the Stamps finish out the season against B.C. and Edmonton — two teams they expect to be competing against for the West Division title.
By Week 7, the Stamps are done with both Montreal and Toronto.
“Every time you work the schedule, you look at the back end as divisional games,” Bauer said. “We have a tough row off the start. We have back-to-back road trips out East and Saskatchewan here early.
“It will be a tough start to the summer. We will find out quickly what we’re made of. The back part of the schedule is favourable.”
The Roughriders only make one trip to McMahon Stadium this season in Week 4, and it’s a Thursday night outing.
Former Stamps QB Henry Burris and the Hamilton Tiger-Cats don’t visit until Oct. 20.
“It will be an interesting game no matter what time of year it is,” Bauer said. “The fact is Henry will be wearing Black and Gold coming in here and we will have a pretty good crowd.”
The Stamps may have some challenges but they don’t have the worst start to the CFL season.
With their new stadium delayed in construction, the Winnipeg Blue Bombers will play the first month of their season on the road.
The Bombers open their new stadium against the Edmonton Eskimos July 26 and play eight of their next 11 games at home.
On Twitter @SUNIanBusby
2012 Stampeders schedule (all times Mountain)
Friday, June 15 vs Edmonton, 7 p.m.
Friday, June 22 at Saskatchewan, 7 p.m.
Sunday, July 1 vs Montreal, 5 p.m.
Saturday, July 7 at Toronto, 1 p.m.
Thursday, July 12 at Montreal, 5:30 p.m.
Thursday, July 19 vs Saskatchewan, 7 p.m.
Saturday, July 28 vs BC, 7 p.m.
Thursday, Aug. 9 at Hamilton, 5 p.m.
Saturday, Aug. 18 vs Toronto, 5 p.m.
Saturday, Aug. 25 at Saskatchewan, 1 p.m.
Monday, Sept. 3 vs Edmonton, 2:30 p.m.
Friday, Sept. 7 at Edmonton, 7 p.m.
Friday, Sept. 14 vs Winnipeg, 7 p.m.
Sunday, Sept. 23 at Saskatchewan, 2 p.m.
Friday, Sept. 28 vs Edmonton, 8 p.m.
Saturday, Oct. 6 at BC, 8 p.m.
Saturday, Oct. 13 at Winnipeg, 11 a.m.
Saturday, Oct. 20 vs Hamilton, 5 p.m.
Friday, Oct. 26 vs BC, 7 p.m.
Friday, Nov. 2 at Edmonton, 7 p.m.
Sunday, Nov. 11 Division semifinals
Sunday, Nov. 18 Division finals
Sunday, Nov. 25 Grey Cup in Toronto, 4:30 p.m.