Calgary Stampeders defensive back Ciante Evans (0) and Stampeders linebacker Alex Singleton (49) try and stop Ottawa Redblacks wide receiver Brad Sinopoli (88) during the second half of the 106th Grey Cup in Edmonton, Alta. Sunday, Nov. 25, 2018. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Darryl Dyck

Icy Grey Cup leads to possible field improvements by CFL

The field conditions emerged as one of the main talking points in Calgary’s 27-16 victory over Ottawa

The weather at the Grey Cup seemed ideal for a late November day in Edmonton. You wouldn’t know it by the state of the field at Commonwealth Stadium.

The field conditions emerged as one of the main talking points in Calgary’s 27-16 victory over Ottawa in the CFL’s championship game on Sunday. Traction was challenging at best for players as the artificial turf surface became icy and slick.

On Monday, the CFL said it planned to meet in the off-season with turf manufacturers and stadium operations staff to see if improvements can be made.

“The teams performed well and the game certainly produced a worthy Grey Cup champion,” the league told The Canadian Press in an emailed statement. “But it was obvious the field was slippery. While the teams chose to practise indoors this week, the field was groomed on a regular basis. However, with temperatures fluctuating for days, moisture accumulated near the base of the turf and ultimately froze.

RELATED: Mitchell named MVP as Stampeders dump Redblacks 27-16 to win Grey Cup

“Weather and challenging playing conditions have long been a part of late-season football. But we do plan to sit down with manufacturers and stadium operations staff this off-season to explore what else could possibly be done in the future to improve the playing surface in such conditions.”

The temperature hovered near the freezing mark at kickoff with light winds. However, the playing surface got worse as the mercury dropped.

“It was treacherous,” said Stampeders head coach Dave Dickenson. “It was just about like a road right after a snowstorm.”

It didn’t seem to matter what kind of cleats the players used as slipping and sliding became the norm rather than the exception.

“It wasn’t pretty icy, it was very icy,” said Ottawa running back William Powell, who ran for a game-high 94 yards. ”But both teams had to play on it. Hopefully in the future we can make better conditions for the Grey Cup but that’s just how it was today.”

RELATED: Calgary QB earns second CFL most outstanding player award

The 56,000-seat stadium was refitted with new turf ahead of the 2015 Women’s World Cup soccer tournament. The turf has a life cycle of eight to 10 years.

Messages left with the stadium’s building supervisor and the turf maker and installer were not immediately returned.

The 2019 Grey Cup will be played at McMahon Stadium in Calgary.

———

Gregory Strong, The Canadian Press

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

Just Posted

Sylvan Lake students visit with Speaker of the Legislative Assembly

Speaker Nathan Cooper visited Steffie Woima Nov. 14 as part of his outreach program

WATCH: Washboard Union opens bull riding weekend in Sylvan Lake

Country artists Jason Benoit and Washboard Union played to a full audience Nov. 14

Alberta Justice Minister advocates UCP rural crime plan

Expanded property rights, more power to peace officers, demonetizing scrap mental part of UCP plan

Sylvan Lake adopts new fire and fireworks bylaws

The change in the bylaw is to reflect the new National Fire Code 2019-Alberta Edition

Sylvan Lake artist to perform at BRC cabaret

Dylan Gillett will take to the stage Friday evening after the bull riders have finished

Teen with cancer whose viral video urged Canadians to vote has died, uncle tweets

Maddison Yetman had been looking forward to voting in her first federal election since junior high school

Protesters say Alberta bill would make it harder to access some medical services

The bill would mean a health-care provider could not be sanctioned for refusing to provide a service due to morals

MacLean says “Coach’s Corner is no more” following Cherry’s dismissal from Hockey Night

Cherry had singled out new immigrants in for not honouring Canada’s veterans and fallen soldiers

Rebels ride 3-goal first period to 4-3 win over Brandon

Goaltender Byron Fancy with key saves in third period to save game

Supreme Court of Canada dismisses murder appeals in 2013 Calgary swarming death

Assmar Shlah and Franz Cabrera were convicted in 2016 of second-degree murder

One year on, most oil-and-gas bailout money has moved, federal government says

Sweden’s central bank says it has sold its Alberta-government issued bonds

Ski resorts selling mountain water is a risky move, critics say

Alberta allowed ski resort in Kananaskis Country to sell about 50 million litres to third party

Sportsnet looks at new options for Coach’s Corner time slot, post-Don Cherry

Spokesperson says Hall of Fame feature on tap this weekend after co-host’s firing

CN Rail confirms job cuts as weakening economy cuts into freight volumes

Railroad also said it was affected by a slowdown in the B.C.’s forestry sector

Most Read