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Alex’s CFL Tuesday Takes – Riders Make Fast Change, Was it Enough?

Published: Tuesday, Oct 24th 2023, 2:10pm

By Alex Dormuth (@RealAlexD)


The Saskatchewan Roughriders 2023 season ended on Saturday afternoon with yet another loss (their 7th straight to end the year… AGAIN), 29-26 to the Toronto Argonauts. Changes had to be made and on Monday, we were informed that General Manager Jeremy O’Day was signed to an extension, but Head Coach Craig Dickenson was going to have his contract expire. 


We all knew Coach Dickey was going to have his contract expire and not renewed, but was that the only change that was needed? Should O’Day have been cut loose too?


According to many fans, the Riders should have moved on from all 3 of Craig Reynolds, Jeremy O’Day & Craig Dickenson. I was also in favour of that (not to the point where I was vigilant about it), but I also knew that the Saskatchewan Roughriders are an “Old Boys Club” and Reynolds would stay. I also figured and accepted that O’Day would be kept around as well. I don’t mind O’Day staying as I really do like a big portion of the talent he’s brought in and it’s only fair that O’Day is able to actually choose his next head coach. That really wasn’t the case with the Dickenson hire.


But to many, it wasn’t enough. And ultimately, I have to agree. At the root of it all, this organization needed a complete culture change. With Reynolds and O’Day still running things, we did not get that. 


At the same time, Craig Reynolds NEEDED to act fast and kudos to him for doing so. Invoices are coming out to season ticket holders this week and if you are Reynolds, you have to spin things to fans to get them to fork over thousands of dollars again. But I’ve already seen many, many comments from long time ticket holders that have said they won’t renew their tickets. And that to me, is the most telling thing. It wasn’t enough change.


This HAS to work out for the Riders and especially Craig Reynolds. Attendance has dwindled under his watch and if it continues to fall and the team doesn’t turn it around into a contender in 2024, he should be gone as well. He has now hitched his wagon to O’Day and if we see another brutal season, they both will need to be punted. They need to get the right person in charge as head coach. The only question now is who will it be?


I expected there to be only one change and that’s what we got. Time will tell if that was the only change that needed to be made, but as for right now… it wasn’t enough. At least not for many longtime season ticket holders.


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