Horror show haunts Paopao

DON BRENNAN -- Ottawa Sun

, Last Updated: 12:22 PM ET

Joe Paopao watched a very bad late show after Thursday's humiliating loss to the B.C. Lions.

It was a replay of the game he had just witnessed from the sidelines.

"About 3:30 or 4 a.m., the blood pressure started to go up again," said the Renegades coach. "When you see why things break down ... it's disheartening.

"Is there going to be changes? Probably. But I don't know who yet."

Something has to be done, and quickly. The Blue Bombers are here next Friday and a loss to them could have severe playoff implications for Paopao's squad. A loss would send the Renegades on a road trip to Calgary with a 5-7 record, and it could improve Winnipeg's record to 5-8, depending on the result of the Bombers' home game against Saskatchewan tonight.

That the Bombers are the last-place team in the West, means the Renegades would have to worry less about Hamilton than getting knocked out of a playoff spot by the crossover format -- and they would still have to worry plenty about the Ticats, who they face twice in the last four weeks of the schedule.

Either way, if the Renegades can't beat Winnipeg at home next week they probably don't deserve to make the playoffs this year.

NEWS AND VIEWS: It's not just the Renegades who should be ashamed of themselves. Of the 46 CFL games that had been played this season heading into last night, only four had failed to draw at least 20,000. All of them were at Frank Clair Stadium ... A comeback attempt that never did get off the ground by 45-year-old punter Hank Ilesic is over. He was released from the Renegades practice roster yesterday ... How is it that the Renegades start two Americans on an offensive line that already features quality non-imports George Hudson, Val St. Germain and Pascal Cheron, yet QB Kerry Joseph still doesn't have enough time to throw the ball? Is it coaching or Joseph taking too long to find an open receiver? ... The Senators were one of the few teams 37-year-old Vincent Damphousse contacted with the offer of his services. He was told thanks but no thanks, and it had to be for financial reasons. In the 2004 playoffs, Damphousse scored seven goals and seven assists in 17 games for the San Jose Sharks. Last time the Senators played that many in the post-season (18 games, in the spring of '03) only Marian Hossa had more than 11 points ... Poolies take note: There remains only one NFL prognosticator you need to read in this city, and he is the Sun's Trevor Bunke. Not only is his success rate among the best anywhere, but his weekly column has run for 16 years and is always there when you're looking for it.

TO THE POINT: The Renegades have brought in wide receiver Matt Cherry for a tryout. Cherry, who is the University of Akron's all-time receptions leader, was cut by the Cincinnati Bengals on Aug. 29 ... Like every other CFL team, the Renegades hide players; they find a way to keep the best of those not on the active roster who they know won't stay around for the $500 a week practice squad money. That they made the mistake of not doing the same for RB Ka'Ron Coleman appears to be both on ownership (for failure to cough up the funds) and the coaching staff (for not keeping Coleman over one of the other hidden players) ... Two observations on local sports talk radio: a) it's been drastically improved with the return of J.R. and b) when it comes to drinking, some callers obviously follow the distorted logic that hey, it's noon somewhere in the world, right?

don.brennan@ott.sunpub.com


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