Calgary Stampeders QB Kevin Glenn says Toronto’s dome unlikely to match BC Place noise
Grey Cup notebook: 'That place, man, it seemed like the audio guy turned the microphones on and let the crowd scream through the speakers'
TORONTO — For the second week in a row, the Calgary Stampeders are heading into a cauldron of noise, where the echoing acoustical assault is probably going to be orchestrated to harm their chances.
On the bright side, said quarterback Kevin Glenn, the volume can’t be any worse than last week at B.C. Place — and that worked out all right for the Stamps.
“It sure couldn’t. That place, man, it seemed like the audio guy turned the microphones on and let the crowd scream through the speakers,” he said Friday. “So I don’t know if it can get any louder on Sunday. But this will be the stage to top that, being the 100th Grey Cup.”
The wall of sound might not be as concerted because the Grey Cup is league-controlled and supposedly noise-neutral, in terms of having the big screen or a hometown announcer stirring up the fans.
“Toronto will have a big part of the crowd but I don’t think it will be as bad as B.C. I think because it’s fans from all over, you’ve got some Saskatchewan fans probably pulling for Calgary, and you got some Hamilton fans probably ... no, probably not cheering for Toronto,” Glenn said, smiling. “Maybe Montreal fans.”
UNDERDOG QBs: Glenn said that among his quarterbacking role models, growing up, were “Randall Cunningham, Dan Marino ... I liked Warren Moon. Doug Flutie. Being from Detroit I actually got a chance to see CFL football, so I watched Damon Allen when I was younger. I watched that 2000 Grey Cup — I was at home from college for Thanksgiving break — and it’s funny that a year later, I’m playing in the league with him. I always kind of liked the underdog, the guy who wasn’t supposed to be playing quarterback but was.”
TWO OF A KIND: Toronto GM Jim Barker sees a lot of similarities between Calgary coach John Hufnagel, with whom he worked in Calgary, and Argos coach Scott Milanovich. Both no-nonsense guys, very sure of themselves, and a little difficult to know.
“You watch, about 10 years from now, this guy (Milanovich) will be the same way. You won’t really ‘get’ him. They’re very similar,” Barker said. “I think it has to do with being from Pennsylvania, both being quarterbacks. I mean, as a quarterback when you throw an interception that’s just the stupidest thing in the world and its gets run back, you have to have the confidence to throw that pass again if it’s right — and that carries over into coaching.”
WHAT PRESSURE? Trying to time a peak in personnel and performance to the exact season when a team’s home city is hosting a Grey Cup is a fool’s errand, and few teams have managed it.
The B.C. Lions are the last to do it, twice, in 1994 and again last year.
But Toronto quarterback Ricky Ray said the Argonauts did not really feel the pressure to get to the championship game this season.
“In Edmonton, we hosted in 2002 and, I think, 2010,” said the longtime Eskimo quarterback. “In ’02 we made it (and lost), and 2010 we didn’t even make the playoffs. But in Edmonton, we practised downtown at the stadium right beside all our front offices were, so you’re hearing all the time about Grey Cup and all the stuff that’s going to happen is constantly on your mind.
“Whereas here, the football operation’s out in Mississauga, so sure, you know that the Grey Cup’s here, but you’re not hearing it on a day-to-day basis. So we’ve just been able to focus on football.”
KACKERT A ‘KILLER’: Whoever it was that said of Argo running back Chad Kackert: “I think he hits harder than he runs — and he runs damned hard!” was pretty much right on the money.
Like Edmonton linebacker J.C. Sherritt, voted the CFL’s outstanding defensive player, and B.C. dynamo Adam Bighill, Kackert doesn’t look half big enough to leave bodies in his wake the way he does. And was told so more than once, on the way up.
“I had a [high school] coach tell me when I was 13: ‘It’s good to be little and fast, but it’s better to be big,’” he said the other day. “That felt like a shot to the heart because they wouldn’t play me. I wasn’t getting any reps, and I was one of the fastest guys on the team. So ever since then I’ve been trying to prove people wrong.”
Argo offensive tackle Chris Van Zeyl told reporters that Kackert was “a guy you want to play for, a guy you don’t want to disappoint. If you give him a little crack, he’s going to kill people. Well, maybe not kill people, but he’s going to score touchdowns.”
With files from The Canadian Press
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