Blue Bomber RB here today and gone tomorrow

KIRK PENTON, SUN MEDIA

, Last Updated: 11:47 AM ET

The Winnipeg Blue Bombers have released running back Rodney Kinlaw before he played a game with the club, let alone practised.

The Bombers signed the former Penn State Nittany Lion on Feb. 9. Kinlaw had 243 carries for 1,329 yards and 10 touchdowns in his senior season of 2007.

No one from the Bombers made himself available yesterday to reveal why Kinlaw was let go.

The Bombers already have running backs Fred Reid and Joe Smith under contract, and the Montreal Gazette reported last week that the Bombers might take a look at Jarrett Payton, a former Alouette, at a free-agent camp later this month.

The Blue and Gold also inked another ball carrier, Lavarus Giles, last week.

Head coach Mike Kelly said earlier this week that the Bombers aren't shopping Smith, who will earn well into six figures this season but is slated to share the tailback duties with Reid.

"We're not dangling Joe Smith out to anybody," Kelly said.

"I don't know where all this speculation is coming from."

POINT SURRENDERED: The Winnipeg Wild blew a two-goal lead in the third period last night and had to settle for a 3-3 tie with the host Swift Current Legionnaires at the Telus Cup west regional hockey tournament.

The Wild and Legionnaires are tied for first place with 1-0-1 records, while the Notre Dame Hounds are 1-1. The top two teams in the four-team tournament will qualify for tomorrow's final.

Winnipeg plays its final round-robin game this afternoon against the Thunder Bay Kings (0-2).

Michael St. Croix scored twice last night for the Wild, who led 3-1 halfway through the third but gave up the tying goal with 48 seconds left.

Brendan O'Donnell had the other goal for Winnipeg and added two assists.

Meanwhile, at the Western Canadian bantam hockey championship in Weyburn, Sask., yesterday, the Winnipeg Monarchs got past the Warman (Sask.) Wildcats 6-4 and then thumped the host Weyburn Wings 7-1 to improve to 2-1.

CHANGES AT THE TOP: Guy Vestby is no longer the head coach of the Swan Valley Stampeders, but he will remain with the MJHL club as its general manager.

Vestby signed a three-year deal this week to serve as the team's GM. He was the GM and head coach for the past two and a half seasons.

The Stampeders, who finished last in the Sher-Wood Division with a 18-39-3-1 record, will now begin a search for its new bench boss.

The MJHL final resumes tonight in Selkirk, with Game 4 set for 7:30.

The Portage Terriers lead the Steelers 2-1 in the best-of-seven series.

RINGERS: Three local teams are gearing up for the Canadian Ringette Championships, which will be held next week in Charlottetown.

Manitoba will have a squad competing in each of the junior (14-15), belle (16-18) and National Ringette League (19-plus) age groups.

The Prairie Fire will represent the province in the NRL division, which features three western and six eastern squads, along with the host Atlantic Attack.


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