Godfrey wants to head an NFL franchise

GEORGE GROSS -- Sun Media

, Last Updated: 9:55 AM ET

There are those who stay in one career and even one company for the better part of their working lives.

Then, there are some individuals who move from field to field, sailing into uncharted waters, guided only by their confidence in their abilities and the defiance of meeting new challenges.

Take Paul Godfrey, for instance.

At first, he found it interesting to represent North York as a councillor. Then, just for a lark, he became chairman of Metropolitan Toronto. His search for a new field landed him the position of publisher of the Toronto Sun, courtesy of the late Doug Creighton's invitation.

Was he now satisfied? Not on your Nelly. He looked for a more exhilarating challenge -- such as becoming president of the Blue Jays baseball team, for instance.

But has his challenge search ended there? Well, perhaps for the moment.

The other day, when I asked him about it, he said:

"Look, my most fascinating hobby is to chase sports franchises. I chased the Blue Jays franchise until Major League Baseball accepted our determination to get a franchise in the American League and not the National League and in Toronto, not in Seattle."

What are you chasing now, I then asked?

"It's not what I may chase, but I have chased an NFL franchise for Toronto for about 20 years and I won't rest until we get one," he replied. "That's my main hobby. I can't talk about Buffalo and if there is anything to talk about, it would have to come from the Bills. That's all I can tell you without getting into trouble."

Okay, Paul, you have told me enough, I also know that you are still president of the Jays, working on improving the team for 2008.

And, unless I'm drastically wrong, I expect you to be president of the chirping Blue Birds in their new uniforms come spring training in Dunedin, Fla.

WORTHY CAUSE

The Westin Harbour Castle Hotel was the scene yesterday of two memorable events -- the Special Olympics Festival breakfast and the Special Olympics Festival Gala.

At the breakfast, the guest speaker was Special Olympics Athlete Christina Campbell and the event MCs were Brian Williams of Olympics TV fame and baseball broadcaster Jerry Howarth.

The association honoured coaches and athletes who distinguished themselves in 2007 and saluted the start of these events 25 years ago.

Last night, at a $750 per person black tie affair, a column of sports celebrities -- too many to mention them individually -- were serenaded by Steven Page of The Barenaked Ladies, Brent Butt of Corner Gas and motivated by the latest top Argonauts executive, Michael (Pinball) Clemons.

Finally, to keep the late revelers busy, the association organized the Motionball After Party presented by Red Bull at the Toula Restaurant of the hotel. It was quite a day for charity.

DISA AND DATA

Canadian football is mourning the passing of former CFL commissioner, Hamilton Ticats owner, general manager and player -- Jake Gaudaur. Jake was a class act from beginning to end. When he left the CFL, the league had $750,000 in the bank. He was a good friend and I'll miss him. Our sympathies go to his wife Molly and the family...Speaking of dearly departed, the famous daredevil Evel Knievel, who passed away last week, used to go to former Maple Leafs star Red Kelly's hockey school to sharpen up his skating talents ... Former CBC-TV cameraman Mort Greenberg, an avid theatre and concert fan, attended a performance of Me And My Girl by the First Timers musical theatre troupe. Others seen at the Workman Arts Theatre were Munich Olympics swimming finalist Byron MacDonald, Kelly, his wife and former North American speedskating champion, Andra Kelly; former Adidas Canada president Tom Nease and Gord McFarland of the Steve Stavro Breakfast Club ... John Kastner, managing editor of the Beacon Herald in Stratford, is trying to raise $5 million for a new hockey facility in that town. Tomorrow, he is holding a major fund-raising dinner at which he hopes to make $400,000 to reach his goal. The Stanley Cup and other NHL trophies will be on display, courtesy of the Hockey Hall of Fame. Jim Ralph will entertain the audience ... Aundre Rose of the Centennial Colts men's basketball team was voted the Ontario Colleges Athletic Association's male athlete of the week, while Landis Doyle of the Humber Hawks women's volleyball team was voted the female athlete of the week ... Volleyball earned two more honours with the Seneca Sting men's team and the Mohawk Mountaineers women's team voted the OCAA teams of the week.


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