Reports Sunday evening are indicating that former BC Lions receiver Emmanuel Arceneaux has a signed a 2 -year free agent deal with his former team. Neither the club or the player has officially confirmed the deal, but several reputable sources are now reporting the contract is done.
Arceneaux spent the last two seasons trying to find a home in the NFL, but spent much of his time on the practice rosters of the Minnesota Vikings, Washington Redskins and most recently the New York Jets, who released him just prior to last week. Over his two season with the Lions, Arceneaux caught 130 passes for 1,972 yards and 12 touchdowns before trying his luck down south.
The Lions were considered to be the front-runner heading into the process, not because BC was his last CFL club, but because the import receiver had a strong connection and mentor type relationship with general manager Wally Buono. He also has a strong connection to several current BC Lions players, as well as the offence of coordinator Jacques Chapdelaine. The departure of Geroy Simon means that there will be a prime role available in training camp,
Earlier this weekend it was speculated the Lions offer to Arceneaux was low and that the Toronto Argonauts were the front-runners to land him. Silence fell over the weekend and twitter users began to speculate what the outcome would be, with Arceneaux playing along and even admitting to The Province’s Lowell Ullrich, ““I was just messing around. Seriously, I didn’t know what was going on.”
In the end both the team and the player got what they wanted and if it wasn’t already, the battle at receiver during training camp will be one to watch.
- Talk over, Arceneaux signs tw0-year Lions Deal – Lowell Ullrich (The Province)
- Lions, WR Arceneaux agree to terms on 2-year, 280K deal. (TSN.ca)
BC Lions centre Angus Reid has teamed up with teammate Andrew Harris to raise money for the Boys and Girls Club. Reid runs a t-shirt screening business and has used his artistic talent to create a caricature t-shirt of the Lions star running back.
The shirts come in sizes from small to XXL and you can order them directly from Andrew’s web site, Harris33.com. They are $25.00 each and $10.00 extra if you would like them shipped, anywhere in Canada.
Angus asked me to see if any of our blog readers, local fans and tailgaters would be interested to pre-order and be able to pick them up from at the Western Final tailgate party. This way you’ll have them for the game and you’ll save $10.00 on shipping.
- Leave a comment below with your order, clearly stating size.
- You must pay for and pick up your shirt at the Western Final tailgate.
- I will not have extras for sale, only what was pre-ordered.
- Ladies, if you would like a women’s cut shirt you must post your order by Monday afternoon!
All proceeds from the shirts will go to the Boys and Girls Club charity.
Those who are diehard fans of the Canadian Football League will likely know a fair bit about the history of the league. For those new to the game, or the casual fan, the Grey Cup 100 Tour Train serves as a travelling history lesson of the game and the league so many of us love.
Starting its 40 plus stop journey across the country in Vancouver, the train celebrates the past while also focusing on the current stars of the game, effectively captivating fans of all ages. It is beautifully wrapped with the 100th Grey Cup logo and stars of the league such as Travis Lulay, Anthony Calvillo and Fred Stamps. The 100th Grey Cup stamp collection is also prominently featured in the design.
There are two sections to the train, one focusing on the Grey Cup itself, while the others celebrate the rich and storied history of the league in a museum type setting.
On the Grey Cup car, fans can hear the motivational speeches of Grey Cup coaches as they prepare their teams for battle. Interactive touch screen displays allow fans to pull up the name plates of every championship team in the history of the trophy, or browse a fan photo montage. The rings of past champions are prominently displayed. The Grey Cup itself awaits visitors at the end of this car. Fans can have their picture taken with the trophy and have it receiver it by e-mail.
The history cars take fans from the beginning in 1909 and its eastern roots, to the inclusion of the west and right through to the present day. You can learn about the league during war time, the depression and about classic clashes like the Mud Bowl, the Fog Bowl and the Snow Bowl. (Why don’t they call them cups?). Did you know the price of a Grey Cup ticket in 1971 was $15.00?
There is another car (which I apparently wasn’t supposed to be in) that will cater to VIP’s and sponsors along the journey, complete with a bar. I did envision myself travelling to Toronto in November on the train. Oh what a party that would be as we picked up fans on our journey east!
Even as a major CFL fan, there were several stories I wasn’t aware of before touring the train, so there is definitely something for everyone on board.
In addition to the train itself, there is a festival type atmosphere at the event. There was a strong presence by the Lions who had current and former players signing autographs. There were interactive football type activities for the kids and live music as well.
One of the coolest ideas to come from this tour is the Fan Cup presented by Telus. Fans can sign up and have their name included on new trophy to be called the Fan Cup that will eventually reside in the Canadian Football Hall of Fame in Hamilton. Telus has come up with a penny press that turns your penny into a keepsake, while ensuring a piece of your penny will be used to create the new cup. The whole process takes a while, so be prepared to stand in line for a bit.
The train is a great way to celebrate the 100th Grey Cup Championship and the history behind it. In addition to the scheduled train stops the Grey Cup will also make several other appearances in communities all over the country, leading up to the big game in November. The cup itself will make a total of 100 appearances by the time the tour is done.
Get out and see it when it comes to your community and celebrate the storied 100 year history of the Canadian Football League!
It may be a bye week for the BC Lions, but this Saturday, August 11th there is a great football event happening at Sports & Stuff in Chilliwack. If you’re a big Lions fan it may well be worth your while to take a drive out to the Fraser Valley and check out the store’s annual Football Day.
Sports & Stuff has the biggest selection of BC Lions and CFL merchandise that I personally have ever seen in a sports store and I always stop in to find that shirt you’ve never seen, or that beer mug you’ve been longing for.
BC Lions players Arland Bruce, Khalif Mitchell and Tim Brown will be on hand to sign autographs and have photos taken and the store has rounded up great prizes, including a ton of Lions merchandise a trip to Las Vegas as well as a chance to see the BC Lions play the Edmonton Eskimos on September 22nd in Edmonton, flight, hotel and tickets included.
The event runs from 11:00am to 3:00pm with the players arriving at 1:00pm. There will be early bird prizes drawn at 12:45. Grand Prize draws will go at 3:15 and you must be present to win.
You’ll receive one entry for every $10.00 spent, and you’ll also get a chance to spin the wheel for a discount of between 10-25% off your purchases.
Here is a more complete list of the prizes up for grabs!
Prize List for Sports & Stuff Football Day, August 11th from 11:00am to 3:00pm.
- A trip to Las Vegas. (Airfare and accommodations)
- A trip to Edmonton to see the Lions play the Eskimos. (Includes tickets, airfare, accommodations and airport transportation).
- Autographed Travis Lulay jersey and helmet.
- Autographed Travis Lulay football
- Autographed Travis Lulay Grey Cup championship hat.
- Autographed Arland Bruce football
- Autographed Khalif Mitchell football
- Autographed Tim Brown football
- Autographed Geroy Simon framed photo
- BC Lions gift basket of assorted items
- BC Lions tickets
- Autographed Jason Garrison puck (Newest Canucks defenseman)
- Chilliwack Chiefs tickets and overnight stay at the Comfort Inn in Chilliwack.
When: Saturday, August 11th, 2012 – 11:00am to 3:00pm
Where: 45610 Luckakuck Way, Chilliwack, British Columbia V2R1A2
See you there! Let Rick and Wendy know that BCLionsDen.ca sent you!
Sports & Stuff is a local sports apparel and memorabilia store located in the Chilliwack Mall. They carry one of the largest selections of Lions and CFL merchandise in the province and on August 11th, they invite you to drive out and get great deals on gear, as well as mingle with BC Lions players. Confirmed to be in attendance so far are Khalif Mitchell and Arland Bruce.
You’ll also have the chance to win some great prizes, including:
- A trip to Las Vegas.
- A trip to Edmonton to see the Lions play the Eskimos.
- An autographed Travis Lulay jersey and helmet.
- Autographed footballs
- Framed photos and lots more.
Tell them BCLionsDen.ca sent you and get an additional discount off any purchases.
When: Saturday, August 11th, 2012 – 1:00pm to 3:00pm
Where: 45610 Luckakuck Way, Chilliwack, British Columbia V2R1A2
If you’re a real CFL fan, you’re probably starting to get a need for some football pretty quick. With the majority of the off-season behind us and all its major events done, the only thing left to do is to open training camps in two weeks and start the long journey to Toronto in November. For the BC Lions that means the defense of their Grey Cup title, and judging by the off-season they’ve had, they are in a great position to give it a solid shot.
We’ll get to talking about the football soon, but the here are a few thoughts and facts about the last couple of weeks in the Lions Den.
The Lions have continued to be very active in the community and the province. Through open houses, season ticket holder kickoffs, football camps and other various events the team has done a fantastic job of coming off the Grey Cup win at home. New ads on transit buses and Skytrain stations are professional and very eye catching. Much of the credit has to go to President Dennis Skulsky, George Chayka and of course owner David Braley for running a first class organization which is apparent whether you’re dealing with their ticket staff, players and even by their solid social media presence.
Things are pretty good in the Lions Den right now, and somewhere Bob Ackles is smiling. Let’s hope it all translates to more fans in the stands.
Season ticket holder kickoff:
One week after an open house at BC Place, the Lions invited their season ticket holders back for a kickoff event to the 2012 season. Fans picked up their season ticket holder packages and listened to speeches from Chayka, Skulsky and Coach Mike Benevides while several players were on hand to model the latest Lions merchandise. Fans had a chance to go on the field and get autographs from the players, and tour the Lions dressing room.
The event was well run, but it would be nice to see the event evolve to be a true state of the address of the team, with a more comprehensive Q&A session between season ticket holders and management/coaches, similar to what the CFL commissioner, Mark Cohon, does at Grey Cup each year.
Conference call recap:
This past week saw the Lions hold their annual media conference call with the media. While working stiff bloggers like me couldn’t take part, the always solid Andrew Bucholtz from Yahoo Sports’ 55Yardline blog had a nice recap here that is worth the read.
The Canucks have the Best Buy Club and now the Lions are introducing a new game day experience this year with the opening of the Orange Club at BC Place:
Club Orange is a newly renovated area located in the east endzone of the building on Level 300 (suite and club lounge level). It is a restaurant style lounge with a variety of seating options available.
A season ticket in this area includes tapas/light-fare food in the ticket price, available from walk-up action stations in the lounge. Passed hors d’oeuvres from servers will also be available. The menu options at the action stations will change from game to game but include options such as fresh pasta, sautéed prawns/chicken, carved items, grilled items, sliders, salads and more.
There is also a private bar in Club Orange. Enjoy a full wine list with international and local wines, as well as premium malt liquor options and local and international beer including Budweiser products (please note, alcoholic beverages are an additional charge to your table or directly at the bar). Various food and dessert stations will also be setup for your enjoyment.
Season ticket holders are currently being offered upgrades to Club Orange before the details on pricing and other options are released to the public. If you think Club Orange might be for you, contact the Lions at 604.589.ROAR
Save the date:
The Lions have several special nights planned for this season. Here is a schedule of the events planned for this season.
- June 29th – Celebration of Champions Night: Opening night and Grey Cup 2012 banner raising.
- July 6th – Wall of Fame Night: Nick Hebeler and Rick Klassen are inducted.
- July 20th – Brent Johnson night.
- August 19th – Celebrating the heart of a champion. Celebrating Wally Buono.
- October 6th – A salute to amateur football.
- November 3rd – In Remembrance – A salute to our veterans.
- There will be a BC Lions coin released this year to celebrate the 100th anniversary of the Grey Cup.
What next around here?
- Well we’ll have some preview blogs prior to training camp.
- An interview with BC Lions Video Coordinator Justin Coderre
- We’ll have tweets, pictures and blogs from training camp and Fan Fest June 7th to the 10th.
Blog ya later Lions fans! It’s almost time to roar again!
The BC Lions are set to launch their newly engineered Reebok jerseys on Wednesday, May 2nd at BC Place and a fan will be chosen to unveil the newest look in the team’s history.
In a great social media move, the Lions ran a contest on Twitter in which one lucky follower will be chosen to unveil the new jersey along with a few high profile BC Lions. Travis Lulay, Geroy Simon, Paul McCallum and Khalif Mitchell will be on hand to model the new threads.
The event will also be open to fans, who are invited to attend at Gate A off of Terry Fox Plaza at 8:00am sharp. The new jersey will also be available for purchase and the Lions players on hand will be signing autographs.
Jerseys will remain on sale at Gate A until 6:00pm on Wednesday and then will be available at the team store in Surrey until May 9th, as well as the online store at BCLions.com.
Not much is known about the new look but information reported so far indicate they won’t look too different from the current edition. Reebok and the league are marketing the jerseys as “re-engineered.” Both player and fan versions will see modifications.
“The on-field jerseys were developed to improve the player experience, while the new (fan) jerseys will bring the fans closer to the game,” said Stewart Clark, marketing director for Reebok Canada. “After a two year process and a close collaboration with the CFL and its teams, Reebok is proud to introduce the new re-engineered jersey.”
The CFL signed a five year agreement with Reebok in 2008. The company was recently replaced in the NFL by Nike, who signed a 5-year $35 million dollar deal with the league to be it’s official apparel supplier. Reebok had held the contract for the last decade.
If you find yourself out in the valley, don’t forget to check out our friend Rick at Sports & Stuff in Chilliwack who will have a large stock of jerseys as well when the become available. Rick has the best selection of Lions and CFL merchandise around.
Travis Lulay will be a BC Lion through the 2013 season, and perhaps longer than that, but right now the team and the CFL’s reigning most outstanding player are happy and comfortable going a year at a time. The team announced Tuesday that they had agreed to terms with their star quarterback.
While the move means great things on the field, off the field Lulay has proven to be just as valuable to the team and the province. His countless personal appearances this off-season, promoting the team, the Grey Cup, and various social and charitable causes have been very impressive.
Lulay sounded like a player who has set down roots.
“From my first days with the Lions I have felt both proud and blessed to have an opportunity to play the game I love in this amazing place I now call home,” said Lulay. “Winning a championship in front of a home crowd at BC Place was an amazing experience and I believe we have the makings of another very talented club in 2012. I am very grateful to our fans for their patience during this process and they can rest assured my focus is on bringing home another Grey Cup.”
As 55 Yard Line’s Andrew Bucholtz points out, the one year extension could benefit both sides down the line.
“Make no mistake, though: this still is a good deal for the Lions. Lulay had an amazing year last season, earning a league all-star nod, the CFL’s Most Outstanding Player award and the Grey Cup MVP award, and he persevered through some early adversity to lead his team to a championship. His CFL market value is sky-high at the moment, and there have been rumours of NFL interest as well. Plus, from an age perspective, the 28-year-old Lulay should still have plenty of great seasons left in the tank. Preventing him from entering free agency next summer is a big win for B.C.”
While what Bucholtz says is completely valid, personally I wouldn’t be too worried about Lulay leaving the Lions for another CFL club. He has become a big part of the community, and at his age could be a valuable marketing tool for years and the two sides seem to have a mutual respect and understanding. If he has another good year, say he wins another Grey Cup, the Lions will have another year to work out a longer term deal, Lulay willing. He doesn’t strike me as a guy who wants to test free agency, and I think something drastic would have to happen for him to do so. An NFL opportunity would be another story, but I just get the feeling that Lulay wants to play and realizes he can make a pretty good living doing so here in Canada.
Time will tell, but for now the Lions have their man…on the field and off it.
Apologies for the tardiness of this big news. We had the post ready to go last night, but our web host was down last night!
Just like a football team, fan blogs need to stay fresh and keep adding talent. With that in mind BCLionsDen.ca is happy to announce the signing of Monique Gendron, aka @Lilminimo, as our new video blogger. In keeping with our blog policy, terms of the deal were not released.
Monique is one of the Lions biggest fans and is a founding member of Section 229, a loud and dedicated fan group at BC Place stadium. BCLionsDen.ca owner Brian Wawryshyn knew that the blog had to make an effort to get her signed.
“Monique and her agent Jeff Green certainly bargained hard. We thought we had a deal last week, but had to fine tune a few things. We feel her talent and spirit will be a great addition to the site. She brings an originality, sense of humour and an undeniable passion for the BC Lions that are going to be very evident in her videos,” said Wawryshyn. “There were other video bloggers we considered, but in the end we got our first choice and we’re thrilled.”
Gendron spoke to reporters at a news conference to announce the signing on Sunday:
Asked when Gendron will start blogging for BCLionsDen.ca, Wawryshyn said, “Well as it says in her contract, whenever the hell she wants to.”
Follow Monique on Twitter @lilminimo and watch for her video blogs on Twitter, on our Facebook page and of course here on BCLionsden.ca
Lions fans were given some more good news yesterday when it was announced that Geroy Simon had signed a contract extension with the team through the 2013 season. As Lowell Ullrich pointed out, the event has pretty much become a yearly one in which Superman calls his own shots and who are we to are argue? Simon is of course on the verge of becoming the league’s all-time leader in receiving yards and with another two full seasons to come, all things willing, it will be a long time before anyone challenges the new mark he’s likely to set early in next year’s campaign.
Simon has indicated he has some coaching aspirations as well, but that he won’t pursue those goals until after his playing days are done so that he can continue to play at a high level. Simon will tell anyone who asks that he feels as good now as he has at any time during his career. That’s great news for BC Lions and CFL fans, but certainly bad news for the defenders that try and cover the man of steel.
Now if they can just get that guy throwing him the ball signed to a new deal…
The Lions have officially replaced defensive line coach Randy Melvin, who left for a job with the Tampa Bay Bucaneers. They will soon announce the hiring of Carl Hairston, who will begin work with the club next week with an impressive resume that includes a Super Bowl ring as a coach in St. Louis and 15 NFL seasons as a player.