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Stimulus To CFL Expansion #2: Punt, Pass, And Kick

A Gatorade punt pass and kick sign on the field during competition  in the Special Olympics  February 8, 2006 in Honolulu, Hawaii.  (Photo by Al Messerschmidt/Getty Images)
Steve ThompsonAnalyst IIISeptember 23, 2009

In my previous article in this series, I mentioned that the CFL had to get more Canadians involved right across the country in order to stimulate interest so that potential investors would take note and consider applying for a franchise and build proper stadiums in non-CFL Canadian markets.

One way of doing this is to copy the NFL which has a yearly punt, pass, and kick competition that involves children from 8 to 13 years old.

Such a program is an excellent way of attracting fans of both sexes at an early age and involving them and their parents in a national competition that concludes during the playoffs and when finalists for the passing competition get to show their stuff on national television and get presented with awards during the game.

Currently there is no such national competition for the CFL across Canada.  Though each club is involved in many charitable events, only the B.C. Lions have a local punt, pass and kick competition.

This is surprising because when football in Canada is compared to hockey, the need to establish roots at an early age is critical for the CFL. 

In hockey, children can compete at an early age, usually in a non-contact way.

I would not recommend establishing tackle football leagues for young children at an early age where they could get hurt.  Usually children are introduced to contact football only in their high school years.

So to get children involved with football (other than touch-football leagues) at a much earlier age, in a non-violent way, a national Canadian punt, pass, and kick competition would be an ideal means of attracting young fans and their parents.

Since it is a non-contact competition, both sexes can compete and perhaps the CFL could get some its distinguished alumni involved as well.

For expansion purposes, the important thing is to get more Canadians involved in some positive way with the CFL, so that more cities will get hungry for a team of their own.

Punt, pass, and kick would be an excellent way of getting children and their parents in non-CFL Canadian cities involved with the league.  It's over to the Commissioner and the Board of Governors to set such a program up.

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