Sked pleases Blue

TED WYMAN -- Winnipeg Sun

, Last Updated: 11:27 AM ET

A well-spaced-out schedule with no short weeks and an early bye is music to the ears of Winnipeg Blue Bombers general manager Brendan Taman.

The 2006 CFL schedule was released yesterday, and it contained mostly good news for the Bombers.

Their shortest span between games is six days, they get their first bye in Week 6, and they play five of their home games on Friday nights, which should be good for ticket sales.

"As long as you don't have short weeks, I don't really care about it," Taman said. "You are always going to play everybody no matter what.

"There's always something people pick up on that's not good -- we've got a bye again the last week of the year -- but it is what it is, and we'll make it work. Short weeks are always things that you want to avoid, which we did."

The Bombers will actually play their first pre-season game on May 28 at home against the Grey Cup champion Edmonton Eskimos. They have another exhibition game in Saskatchewan on June 3 and are then off for two weeks before they open the regular season in Calgary on June 17.

New Bomber coach Doug Berry will coach against his old team -- the Montreal Alouettes -- for the first time at Canad Inns Stadium on June 23.

"The schedule is very well spaced, and we have a bye in Week 6, which is great," Taman said.

"The first bye we had last year was in October."

The Bombers will play three games each against the Stampeders and Roughriders, going to Calgary twice and hosting Saskatchewan on a pair of occasions. The annual Banjo Bowl between the Bombers and 'Riders will be played Sunday, Sept. 10 at the Stadium.

The Eskimos and Alouettes, who met in last year's Grey Cup game, will kick off the CFL season on June 16th in Montreal.

The Bombers will play eight of their games on Friday nights, five on Saturdays, three on Sundays and one each on Monday and Thursday.

The playoffs are slated for Nov. 5 and 12, and the Grey Cup, which will be played at Canad Inns Stadium, goes Nov. 19.

BOMBERS 2006 SKED

(all times CT)

Pre-season

Sun., May 28 vs. Edmonton 2 p.m.

Sat., June 3 at Sask. 8 p.m.

Regular Season

Sat., June 17 at Calgary 7 p.m.

Fri., June 23 vs. Montreal 7 p.m.

Fri., June 30 vs. Hamilton 6:30 p.m.

Sat., July 8 at Toronto 3 p.m.

Sat., July 15 vs. Calgary 6 p.m.

Fri., July 28 at Hamilton 6:30 p.m.

Fri., Aug. 4 vs. Edmonton 6:30 p.m.

Thur., Aug. 10 vs. Toronto 7 p.m.

Fri., Aug. 18 at B.C. 9:30 p.m.

Fri., Aug. 25 vs. Ottawa 7 p.m.

Sun., Sept. 3 at Sask. 6:30 p.m.

Sun., Sept. 10 vs. Sask. 1 p.m.

Sat., Sept. 16 at Ottawa 2 p.m.

Fri., Sept. 22 at Edmonton 8 p.m.

Fri., Sept. 29 vs. B.C. 7 p.m.

Mon., Oct. 9 at Montreal noon

Sun., Oct. 15 at Calgary 3 p.m.

Sat., Oct. 21 vs. Sask. 6 p.m.


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