Ottawa CFL deal brewing?

PERRY LEFKO -- Toronto Sun

, Last Updated: 9:42 AM ET

Frank D'Angelo is juiced about potentially resurrecting a Canadian Football League team in Ottawa in 2007.

D'Angelo, chief executive officer of D'Angelo Brands -- which produces various juices -- and Steelback Brewery has told the CFL he might be interested in the Ottawa market.

D'Angelo said he only became aware of the Ottawa situation on Monday, a day after the CFL board of directors folded the team for the 2006 season.

He called CFL commissioner Tom Wright, but was informed he was too late.

"The only time I was personally aware of it was when it was crashing and burning," D'Angelo said yesterday. "The main blitz was on Monday and it was emotional. It was pretty depressing. I can imagine what the people that work for the franchise and the players feel like. I would have saved these people a lot of pain and suffering."

D'Angelo said his interest still is in the early stage.

"I need to see the (financial) books," he said. "Are we interested? Sure we're interested and we don't need gratuitous advertising.

"Football and beer go hand in hand.

"This is all about us being a part of the CFL. If Western Canada is successful (with the CFL), why shouldn't Eastern Ontario or Quebec be successful?"

D'Angelo has been a sponsor of the Argos for the past two years and fronts his own musical band that occasionally plays the national anthem and halftime shows at the games. Prior to the Renegades folding, any interested parties had to put up at least a $10-million assurance. There is speculation now that with eight solid teams, the CFL only would return to Ottawa with a lock-solid owner or ownership group. Potential buyers likely would have to pay a franchise fee of about $5 million and also provide financial guarantees.

The CFL plans to go through a formal bidding process for 2007.

D'Angelo said he has the financial wherewithal.

"We're prepared to sustain the team and make it competitive," D'Angelo said.


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