Esks feel right at home at B.C. Place

JONATHAN HUNTINGTON -- Edmonton Sun

, Last Updated: 11:18 AM ET

VANCOUVER -- Maybe the Edmonton Eskimo brass should nominate equipment manager Dwayne Mandrusiak to be on one of those popular home redecorating TV shows.

Mandrusiak has transformed the B.C. Lions' dressing room at B.C. Place into a comfy home away from home for the Eskimo players during this Grey Cup week.

Once a dressing room dominated by orange paint is now covered with Eskimo signs and the same 12 mini Grey-Cup banners that usually hang in the Commonwealth Stadium locker-room.

The large green rug that usually marks the entrance to the room in Edmonton is also now in the Lions' room.

And of course, Football Boy - the good-luck statue of a child playing football - has also made the trip west after travelling with the team during the West semifinal win in Calgary and the West final win in this same stadium.

"I'm sure the B.C. Lions wouldn't appreciate seeing (the room)," said offensive lineman Bruce Beaton.

Added receiver Ed Hervey: "We can send them a picture of it."

Joking aside, the Eskimos are thankful for the transformation of the room.

"You want to walk in and see green and gold. You don't want to see any other colour. It makes it feel like home," continued Hervey.

In November 2003 in Regina, when the Eskimos last appeared in the Grey Cup, Mandrusiak transformed the Roughriders' dressing room.

"And it worked, and hopefully it works here," said Beaton, who played on the Eskimo winning team that season.

In stark contrast, the Montreal Alouettes' room has no decorations.

FINISH LINES: Mandrusiak called it a "no brainer" as he confirmed the Eskimos will wear white uniform tops and green pants tomorrow in the Grey Cup. The Eskimos have to wear white tops based on the coin toss earlier this week. The team could wear white pants, but is sticking with the green pants that have been worn for two straight playoff wins.


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