Copeland sets sights high

TERRY KOSHAN, QMI Agency

, Last Updated: 10:29 AM ET

Jeremaine Copeland, in Toronto for a quick two-day visit, had a simple query for Argonauts head coach Jim Barker.

Was anyone in possession of No. 80?

"Anything less would be uncivilized," Copeland said, quoting the old Right Guard commercial. "The first thing I said when I started in Montreal (in 2001) was that I wanted to be the Jerry Rice of the CFL. He was a guy I always looked up to as a receiver. I want to be one of the best to play the game in the CFL."

Copeland, scheduled to fly back to Calgary on Wednesday after taping an interview on the Casino Rama Grill Room, meeting with reporters and answering questions at the Argos fan forum on Tuesday night, was relieved to learn that the most recent owner of No. 80 in Toronto, Brad Smith, last week was traded to the Edmonton Eskimos. So no bribery that might include a new watch or dinner will be necessary from Copeland when camp opens.

Copeland turned 33 this past Friday, an age that means that life could be slowing down only in the world of a professional athlete. But the charismatic Copeland didn't bat an eye as he blew out the candles on his birthday cake.

"I still feel good after I work out," Copeland said. "I don't have the soreness in my bones saying 'Hey, you are getting a little bit older.' I've been blessed to stay healthy for a long time and I think nothing will change this year."

The Argos don't have another marquee player of Copeland's ilk, definitely not on offence, and might not when players report in June. Doesn't matter, Copeland said.

"We have to get the mentality that we have nothing to lose," Copeland said. "Everybody who is coming to play us, has everything to lose.

"We're the team that has won only seven games in two years. We have nothing to hold back."


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