Boatman ready for 'scary movie' Banjo Bowl
By KIRK PENTON, QMI Agency
|Winnipeg Blue Bombers OL Shannon Boatman limbers up during football practice on Thurs., Sept. 7, 2012. (JASON HALSTEAD/QMI Agency)
WINNIPEG - Shannon Boatman likes horror movies. The scarier, the better.
If that’s the case, he might like Sunday’s Banjo Bowl for all the wrong reasons.
Boatman will make his first start for the Bombers (2-7) against the Saskatchewan Roughriders (4-5) on Sunday in place of right tackle Jordan Taormina, who will sit out due to the lingering effects of a stinger in his neck. It will be Boatman’s sixth career professional start.
If there’s good news on Winnipeg’s offensive line it’s that right guard Steve Morley’s ankle will be healthy enough for him to start against the Roughriders, who pasted the Bombers 52-0 in last week’s Labour Day Classic. Morley didn’t practise on Friday, but he’ll be good to go for Sunday’s noon start, head coach Tim Burke said.
Considering the final score can’t get any worse doesn’t make it any easier to go on the roster, according to Boatman.
“It’s not easy at all,” he said. “There’s going to be a lot of eyes on us, so I’m pretty sure people are going to be critical of everything that happens. You just gotta go out there and play, no matter the situation.”
Boatman made five career starts for the Argonauts, and his first was against the Bombers, who had Odell Willis and Phillip Hunt on the defensive line. Willis and Hunt both had a sack in that 2010 contest, but the Argos won 17-13.
“It was pretty tough,” Boatman said. “It was a tough game, but I played pretty good.”
PLENTY OF TIME
GM Joe Mack’s math was off a little Thursday when he said the Bombers were only one game out of a playoff spot. They are actually two games out of post-season position, but head coach Tim Burke isn’t worried about that at the campaign’s midway point.
“Certainly time’s not up yet, so I don’t want to get into a hypothetical that is down the line,” Burke said. “And hopefully we don’t run up on that hypothetical. If you look at our schedule, we’ve got six Eastern opponents, so we kind of control our future in that respect.
“Our guys are positive going into this week. They’re going to be enthusiastic.”
The Bombers will conduct their annual Fan Appreciation Day on Saturday at the stadium. There will be a team autograph session at 11:30 a.m., but fans are asked to arrive early. Everyone will receive a Bomber team poster. The Watchmen and Northern Pikes will then conduct free concerts beginning at 12:45 p.m. … The Bombers put a couple hundred more temporary seats up for sale Friday. They are located in the southeast corner of the stadium … Winnipeg will wear its retro 1970s jerseys for the final time on Sunday … The Banjo Bowl series is tied 4-4 … Newly acquired receiver Greg Carr, the former Bombers, won’t play on Sunday for the Roughriders, according to reports out of Saskatchewan.