Blue Bomber Report Record: 6–6–0

Winnipeg Free Press - PRINT EDITION

Blue want clean slate

Bombers eager to banish any memories of 2012, 2013

  • Print

The Winnipeg Blue Bombers have one key sales pitch they wish to deliver and then reinforce with the opening of the 2014 CFL regular season upon us:

Please forget the nightmare of 2013 and the doom and gloom of 2012.

And, trust them, from their perspective, the slate has been wiped clean.

Still, some stains are really difficult to get out of the carpet.

And these 'Under New Management' Bombers will have a lot of cynics and naysayers to win over beginning tonight at Investors Group Field against the Toronto Argonauts (7:30 p.m.; TSN/CJOB).

"Clean slate," said Bomber defensive tackle Bryant Turner Jr. "We've got a lot of great guys around here, a lot of great leaders.

"We're anxious to see what happens. We have a great feeling that some great things are going to happen. We just want to see how great. We wish we could have a time machine and fast forward to (Thursday) to 7:30 so we can go ahead and get started."

The game will mark the Bomber debut of new quarterback Drew Willy and head-coaching debut of Mike O'Shea as the two key components of the club's off-season makeover.

"I feel good," said Willy. "We've been preparing for this since the opening day of training camp. I'm putting everything I can into film work and just making sure my reads are correct. I definitely feel comfortable with the guys we're going out there with and I'm just looking forward to this experience."

Willy made four spot starts with the Saskatchewan Roughriders and filled in for the Las Vegas Locomotives of the UFL when their starter, Tim Rattay, was injured. But this opportunity is essentially his first as QB1 since his days at the University of Buffalo.

"I've been around a lot of different places and big games, maybe not as the starter, but I've been around the starting QB and talked to him," said Willy. "You can pull on all those different experiences and put them into mind, but obviously this is the first regular start being 'The Guy.'

Willy said he will have his mom and dad, step-mom and step-dad and his little brother at the game. O'Shea's family, meanwhile, is back in Ontario finishing up some last-minute arranging before moving to Winnipeg.

Both went out of their way on Wednesday to steer clear of the spotlight and that's been a common approach since training camp opened in late May. Neither O'Shea nor Willy want this to be just about then, but instead a collective approach to turning around a franchise that has done a whole lot of losing over the last two years, going a combined 9-27.

But while they might hide their excitement when the cameras are rolling in the media room, it's evident to those around them daily.

"We're feeding off our head coach," said Turner. "He's very anxious himself -- this is his first big gig and you can see the butterflies in him, just like in the rookies who are starting. It's exciting for everyone."

"Buying in is going to be very important for this team," added veteran tackle Glenn January. "We've got a lot of new pieces here from across the league. Up to this point everybody has really, truly bought in and accepted what has been put in front of us. I'm excited to see what this group can do."

ed.tait@freepress.mb.ca

Twitter: @WFPEdTait

Republished from the Winnipeg Free Press print edition June 26, 2014 D2

Fact Check

Fact Check

Have you found an error, or know of something we’ve missed in one of our stories?
Please use the form below and let us know.

* Required
  • Please post the headline of the story or the title of the video with the error.

  • Please post exactly what was wrong with the story.

  • Please indicate your source for the correct information.

  • Yes

    No

  • This will only be used to contact you if we have a question about your submission, it will not be used to identify you or be published.

  • Cancel

Having problems with the form?

Contact Us Directly
  • Print

You can comment on most stories on winnipegfreepress.com. You can also agree or disagree with other comments. All you need to do is be a Winnipeg Free Press print or e-edition subscriber to join the conversation and give your feedback.

You can comment on most stories on winnipegfreepress.com. You can also agree or disagree with other comments. All you need to do is be a Winnipeg Free Press print or e-edition subscriber to join the conversation and give your feedback.

Have Your Say

New to commenting? Check out our Frequently Asked Questions.

Have Your Say

Comments are open to Winnipeg Free Press print or e-edition subscribers only. why?

Have Your Say

Comments are open to Winnipeg Free Press Subscribers only. why?

The Winnipeg Free Press does not necessarily endorse any of the views posted. By submitting your comment, you agree to our Terms and Conditions. These terms were revised effective April 16, 2010.

letters

Make text: Larger | Smaller

LATEST VIDEO

Sneak peek: MTS Centre’s renovations for 2014/15 season

View more like this

Photo Store Gallery

  • Marc Gallant/Winnipeg Free Press. Gardening Column- Assiniboine Park English Garden. July 19, 2002.
  • KEN GIGLIOTTI / WINNIPEG FREE PRESS / Jan 10  2011 ‚Äì WEB STDUP ‚Äì Frosty morning at -15 degrees C , in pic frost covers the the Nellie McClung statue  on the MB Legislature grounds at 7am

View More Gallery Photos

 

Poll

How many goals do you think Evander Kane will score this year?

View Results

View Related Story

Ads by Google