Winning smile eludes 'Cats

PERRY LEFKO -- Toronto Sun

, Last Updated: 8:41 AM ET

HAMILTON -- Forget about the ancient rivalry between the Argos and Tiger-Cats. The current battle between their head coaches is more interesting.

While the Ticats haven't beaten an Argos team in the past 15 encounters, Hamilton head coach Greg Marshall has yet to record a win against his Toronto counterpart Pinball Clemons since Marshall began his pro coaching career last year. He is 0-for-8.

The two coaches will renew their individual battle when their teams play today at Ivor Wynne Stadium.

Last year, when he beat out Clemons for coach-of-the-year honours, Marshall jokingly said just once he'd like to be the one smiling after a victory instead of the other way around following a loss or a tie.

"We'll see (today)," he said yesterday. "We all know what type of person Michael Clemons is and that he is genuine. And there's always that feeling -- and I don't doubt it for a second -- on those walks after the game that somewhere inside of him, as much as he is happy for his team, he feels a little bit sad for you. He is a genuine man."

So when he was asked in a light-hearted way if he'd like to wipe the smirk off Clemons' face, Marshall said: "Just for a bit. He'll probably still have a little smile. I have to hang around long enough just to see that one (victory) walk. I won't have as big a smile, but I'll try."

And Clemons will be trying to continue his mastery of Marshall.

"Can I see it from (his perspective)? I really have no desire to at this point," he said. "We don't want to entertain failure."

Clemons has some concerns about playing the Tiger-Cats, who ended an eight-game winless drought to start the season with a 41-39 win over the Winnipeg Blue Bombers on Aug. 26.

"You don't want to be the first team after the victory because now they're playing with a different level of enthusiasm," Clemons said.

"You already know they were a better football team than their record indicated. No question about it. Now they've gotten a chance to experience some success. And combine that with Labour Day and they'll be playing with a renewed sense of confidence."

MASOTTI IS MARRIED

Former Argos star receiver Paul Masotti married yesterday and among the guests were Clemons, Argos v-p of football operations Adam Rita, equipment manager Danny Webb and several Argos and Ticats players.


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