Lack of alternate venue could be last straw for Argos owners

TERRY KOSHAN, TORONTO SUN

, Last Updated: 4:24 AM ET

Their dream of moving their CFL team to BMO Field is dead.

Now, whether David Cynamon and Howard Sokolowski keep the Argonauts should be known in a few weeks.

For months, there have been rumours that the Argos co-owners have been thinking of selling the club to B.C. Lions owner David Braley. It's possible that staying at the Rogers Centre could be the final blow for the pair.

The feasibility study authorized by the CFL board of governors did as expected, finding that BMO Field is not suitable for CFL football.

"I didn't really believe it was going to be practical to move for 2010 anyway," Argos president Bob Nicholson said. "I am not surprised with the outcome."

The Argos would have been hard-pressed to fit a 110-yard field with 10-yard end zones into BMO. By CFL standards, end zones are 20 yards long. With the stands close to the field, the issue of player safety also would have been a major concern.

There are no other options for the Argos but to stay at the Rogers Centre, Nicholson confirmed. Neither Varsity Stadium nor Lamport Stadium would work.

Cynamon and Sokolowski were excited with the idea of playing at a smaller venue, even though it would have meant fewer fans at games. The intimacy at Montreal's Percival Molson Stadium, for example, where just over 20,000 fans are in the seats, makes for an atmosphere that is difficult to match.

Nicholson had been planning that the Argos would be at the Rogers Centre next season. Next is working out a new lease agreement with Rogers.

The interview process has not yet started for a new coach, meanwhile, with the firing of Bart Andrus on Monday. Sources have said previously that if Braley indeed takes over, general manager Adam Rita is safe. This is despite the fact the Argos have missed the playoffs the past two years, going a combined 7-29.

As for Cynamon and Sokolowski, something official should be coming, finally, in January.

"Our ownership now plans to reflect on its future over the holiday season and does not anticipate any further announcements until the New Year," the Argos said in a release.

TERRY.KOSHAN@SUNMEDIA.CA


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