90 years of Big Blue memories on display


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This article was published 02/11/2022 (218 days ago), so information in it may no longer be current.

The Winnipeg Blue Bombers football team that won the 1990 Grey Cup will be inducted into the Manitoba Sports Hall of Fame on Nov. 3. Head coach Mike Riley and more than a dozen team members are expected to attend the annual induction ceremony at the Victoria Inn. In the Grey Cup game played at BC Place in Vancouver on Nov. 25, 1990, the Bombers overwhelmed the Edmonton Eskimos 50-11. The Bombers had become the CFL’s East division representative by defeating the Toronto Argonauts.

The Bombers led 10-0 after the first quarter on a field goal by Trevor Kennerd and a touchdown pass from quarterback Tom Burgess to Lee Hull. Kennerd added a convert. The only scoring in the second came on a single and field goal by Eskimo kicker Ray Macoritti. The Bombers then scored 28 points in the third to set a Grey Cup record for points in a quarter.

CFL defensive player of the year Greg Battle started the onslaught with a 34-yard interception for a touchdown. Perry Tuttle and Warren Hudson then scored on passes from Burgess. Hudson scored the fourth TD of the quarter on a two-yard run and Kennerd converted all four. In the fourth, Larry Willis scored Edmonton’s only touchdown on a pass from Tracy Ham. Macoritti converted. The Bombers added a safety when James (Wild) West tackled Ham in the end zone. A field goal by Kennerd and a touchdown pass by Danny McManus to Rick House ended the scoring. Burgess, who completed 18 of 31 passes, was named top offensive player and Battle took the defensive honours. Fullback Hudson was the top Canadian.

<p>Supplied photo</p>
                                <p>An exhibit called <em>90 Years of Blue and Gold</em> will be on display in the Hall of Fame and Museum at the Sport Manitoba building until spring 2023.</p>

Supplied photo

An exhibit called 90 Years of Blue and Gold will be on display in the Hall of Fame and Museum at the Sport Manitoba building until spring 2023.

The 1990 team is the ninth Blue Bomber Canadian championship team to be inducted into the provincial shrine. The Bombers won the Grey Cup in 1939 and 1941 and then took four titles between 1958 and 1962, missing out only in 1960. Following a drought of more than two decades, the team was back on top in 1984 and 1988. Then known as the Winnipeg Rugby Football Club, our city’s team won its first Grey Cup in 1935.

The late Cal Murphy was the Bombers general manager in 1990. During his CFL career as a coach and/or GM, which ran from 1974 to 1999, his teams won nine Grey Cups, including three with Winnipeg. Offensive lineman Chris Walby in 2006, punter Bob Cameron in 2011, and Kennerd in 2016 are the 1990 players who have been inducted into the Sports HOF as individuals. A 2009 inductee, James Murphy also was a member of the 1990 team, but suffered a career-ending injury in September of that season.

While the Bombers had a long history of filling their roster with local players, that wasn’t the case in 1990. Walby, who played with the team from 1981 to 1996, and linebacker John Yule from the University of Manitoba were the only Winnipeg-born players on the roster. Defensive tackle Stan Mikawos, who was born in Poland, was a Winnipeg product who played high school football for Gordon Bell.

Until the spring of 2023, the glorious history of the Blue Bombers will be on display in the Hall of Fame and Museum at the Sport Manitoba building, 145 Pacific Ave. The exhibit is titled 90 Years of Blue and Gold with display cases dedicated to different eras. The cases cover players, coaches, trainers, builders, fans, and cheerleaders such as the Blue Bomberettes baton twirlers. The 1990 team and players are featured in the Cal Murphy case along with stars from the era such as Willard Reaves and Joe Poplawski.

Sports Heritage manager Rick Brownlee marvels at the talent in what he calls the “drought case” — players such as Dieter Brock, Milt Stegall, Charles Roberts and Khari Jones, who never won a Grey Cup. He added that the Bud Grant and Jack Jacobs cases have great players and fascinating artifacts. On one wall are two large panels featuring individual photos of the members of the inducted Bomber teams whose photos didn’t fit into the decade cases.

T. Kent Morgan

T. Kent Morgan
Memories of Sport

Memories of Sport appears every second week in the Canstar Community News weeklies. Kent Morgan can be contacted at 204-489-6641 or email: sportsmemories@canstarnews.com

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