One Hall of a choice

PERRY LEFKO -- Toronto Sun

, Last Updated: 8:00 AM ET

Christmas came early for Matt Dunigan last year.

A week before the holiday, the retired Canadian Football League quarterback was informed by commissioner Tom Wright he'd been selected for induction into the Canadian Football Hall of Fame this year.

"To me, it's a tremendous opportunity and a humbling experience and one that is overwhelming because it catches you completely off guard -- it did me, anyways," Dunigan said yesterday upon the official release of this year's inductees.

Dunigan will be joined by Edmonton Eskimos return specialist Henry (Gizmo) Williams; Calgary Stampeders receiving great Allen Pitts; Saskatchewan Roughriders rush end Bobby Jurasin (who played briefly for the Argos); and Victor Spencer, who spearheaded professional football in B.C.

"Being associated with that calibre of people was just icing on the cake," Dunigan said. "It's the biggest honour you can have bestowed on you as far as a football player is concerned."

Dunigan played for six teams, including the Argos in 1991-92, over 14 seasons. Upon retirement in 1996, he was the only quarterback in CFL history to lead five different teams to winning records. He rushed 850 times for 5,031 yards and 77 touchdowns.

Dunigan's career also was marked by injuries. He had to have a shoulder frozen to play in the 1991 Grey Cup, which he won with Toronto. A concussion resulting from a devastating hit forced his retirement after an abbreviated season in Hamilton.

He played for several years with painkillers, but recently has enjoyed a quality of life pain free after trying a product, Cell-FX, which is designed for bone and joint discomfort, and has become a pitchman for it.

"I'm excited what it's doing for me after numerous injuries," said Dunigan, who has worked for several years as a TSN football commentator and coached the Calgary Stampeders in 2004.

"I had enough of popping drugs through my body when I was playing -- any type of anti-inflammatory you can think of that had lousy side effects on you," he said.

"This is a natural product that metabolizes through your system without any side effects on your kidneys or liver. To me, it's perfect."

AROUND THE LEAGUE

The Roughriders are expected to announce they've hired former Ottawa assistant Tommy Condell as offensive co-ordinator ... The CFL schedule is expected to be announced today ... The Touchdown Atlantic pre-season game in Halifax between the Ottawa Renegades and Montreal Alouettes will be played June 3.

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HALL OF FAMERS

- Matt Dunigan, QB (1983-1996): Three-time league all-star ... Played for six teams.

- Bobby Jurasin, DE (1986-97): Four-time league all-star playing for Roughriders.

- Allen Pitts, WR (1990-2000): Five-time league all-star CFL's career ... Played in five Grey Cups.

- Henry (Gizmo) Williams, KR/PR (1986-2000): Five-time league all-star ... Return specialist holds numerous league records

- Victor Spencer (builder): Helped build football in British Columbia.


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