Hervey got cold shoulder

JONATHAN HUNTINGTON -- Edmonton Sun

, Last Updated: 11:42 AM ET

WINNIPEG -- Ed Hervey's first stop on his CFL journey isn't noted in the Edmonton Eskimos media guide.

His initial experience is also ignored by the CFL's official facts and figures book.

But the wide receiver from USC actually started his tour of duty in Canada with the Winnipeg Blue Bombers in 1996 - and he walked away 48 hours after he arrived, unsure if he would ever return to the league.

"I came here for a couple days and it was one of the worst places I have ever been," recalled Hervey.

"At the time - whoever was in charge - things just weren't run correctly.

"After that first day (here) and some other stuff that happened, I knew I had to get out of here in order to keep my sanity."

Hervey arrived in Winnipeg from the Dallas Cowboys' camp.

"You go from everything being done first class to getting your pads handed to you from a leaky trailer," said Hervey, still easily remembering that first day with the Bombers organization.

"And the guy was adamant about giving me a wet pair of shoulder pads to wear.

"I picked up another pair of pads that were dry on the opposite side of the room and he really wanted me to wear these soggy pads.

"I wasn't too impressed.

"I called up my agent that night and said, 'I want to go home.'

"Football is not worth it if I have to stay here - and I was out of here on the next thing smoking."

It took three years before Hervey decided to return to the CFL.

"Paul Jones gave my agent a call and explained that Edmonton was a lot different than what I experienced in Winnipeg," he remembered.

"It actually took me 10 days to sign the contract (with Edmonton in April 1999) because this time I researched it myself and took a look to see if it was worth my time.

"And I realized that Warren Moon had played in Edmonton and I remembered Hugh Campbell being the LA Express head coach and coming to the Houston Oilers.

"I knew if it was going to be done right, Hugh was probably the guy that could do it.

"So, I decided to take a chance."

And in an ironic twist, he has feasted on Winnipeg's secondary the last two years, averaging more than 100 receiving yards a game.


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