Every year each sports outlet has the same repetitive list of memorable Grey Cup moments. The Mud Bowl, the Fog Bowl, the Trip, the Catch, the Kick, etc, each item referring to either some meteorological event or a play. Here are 10 other Grey Cup moments, in chronological order, that are memorable because they weren’t football plays.
1. The 36th Grey Cup (1948) – The Grand National Drunk
Calgary 12 – Ottawa 7 at Varsity Stadium in Toronto
Ask any Easterner what they are thankful to Calgary for and 99 out of 100 will say, “Not a good goddamn thing!” What many fans don’t realize is that it was Calgary that started the “Grand National Drunk” in 1948. Two train loads of Calgarians (and horses?) made the trip to Toronto with the team. The inebriated fans spilled out into Union station and true mayhem ensued.
The traditional pancake breakfast was started on the steps of Toronto City Hall.
Impromptu parades and parties sprang up all over the city.
$1 tickets were being scalped for $25.
From the Globe and Mail. Nov. 29th, 1948:
“The football game for the Grey Cup was contested officially in the stadium and was continued unofficially in the hotel lobby. At 5:01 p.m. the goalposts were borne triumphantly through the front doors and were erected against the railings of the mezzanine.
“At 5:02 p.m. two platoons of bellboys circumspectly removed the potted palms, flower vases and anything that weighed less than three thousand pounds.
“The gaudily caparisoned Calgary supporters were boisterous and noisy but well-behaved and courteously declined to ride their horses into the elevators. Any minor untoward incidents were occasioned by youthful local yahoos who suffered from the delusion that the consumption of two pints of ale and the acquisition of a pseudo-western twang entitled them to ride the range astride any convenient chesterfield.”
2. The 59th Grey Cup (1971) – Prime Minister Cries, Abdandon’s Team.
Calgary 14 – Toronto 11 at Empire Stadium in Vancouver
The title pretty much says it all. The Prime Minister of Canada, in 1971 watched the Argos lose, then cried about it. Now he cheers for the Stamps because he’ll never be a loser again.
3. The 63rd Grey Cup (1975) Nadia Stooshnoff: The Grey Cup Streaker.
Edmonton 9 – Montreal 8 at McMahon Stadium in Calgary
“Show your tits!” has never been taken so literally. Nadia, you’re a saint.
Total game focus. No one pays her any attention.
4. The 65th Grey Cup (1977) – The FIRST Fan March
Montreal 41 – Edmonton 6 at Olympic Stadium in Montreal
65 is famous for being the “Ice Bowl” and setting an attendance record (68,318). What it is less famous for is how fans got to the game. Montreal was in the middle of one of its frequent transit strikes and the Metro was shut down. Locals guided a hoard of tourists on a march from downtown Montreal to the Big-O. All they were missing was the Cup itself.
5. The 79th Grey Cup (1991) – Matt Dunigan Tests Broken Collar Bone in Hotel Conference Room.
Toronto 36 – Calgary 21 at Winnipeg Stadium in Winnipeg
79 is famous for the Hollywood atmosphere brought by the Argonauts and their owners who were paying a then NFL/CFL record salary to Rocket Ismail. The game is most remembered for the Rocket’s Grey Cup record 87 yard kickoff return for a touchdown. Sounds impressive right? Well, spoken of less is the fact that Matt Dunigan played the entire game with a broken collar bone. Fahk! The night before the game the Doc froze his shoulder and he was asked to throw several passes across a Winnipeg hotel conference room. Satisfied with his abilities the Argonauts put him on the field.
In the single ballsiest display of football manhood in Grey Cup history, Dunigan played the first half, had his shoulder refrozen at half time and THEN WON. He threw two touchdowns, with a broken collar bone. Quit whining about your hangover.
6. The 82nd Grey Cup (1994) – Wrong MVP
BC 26 – Baltimore 23 at BC Place Vancouver
82 is most known for the being the year BC kept the Cup in Canada from the invading Baltimore Stallions. In his finest moment, CFL broadcaster Steve Armitage awarded MVP to Lui Passaglia whom had just won the game on the last play with his clutch field goal. Problem was the sports writers, presumably to beat the traffic, had voted the MVP one play earlier and awarded it to Karl Anthony of Baltimore making him the first (and only) losing player in Grey Cup history to win the award. Armitage had to later track down Passaglia and retract the truck that came with it. Luckily for Lui however, a local car dealership donated the use of another for a year in lieu of the vehicle Armitage was taking back.
Haha how’s that for a reward?
“You just won MVP for winning the Grey Cup against the dastardly Americans! Here’s your truck. Oh, wait, just kidding! You can use this one for a year though, just don’t drive it over 12k or it’s $0.15/km.”
7. The 85th Grey Cup (1997) Idiot Kicker Loses Cup in Bar
Toronto 47 – Saskatchewan 23 at Commonwealth Stadium in Edmonton.
The tale of the Grey Cup kidnapping in 1969 is frequently told but less known is the time former Toronto kicker Mike Vanderjagt lost the Cup after winning it in November 1997. Mike decided to use his personal time with the trophy by taking it to a bar in his hometown of Oakville, ON. After who knows how many beers, he was getting ready to go home and went to the men’s room to drain the main vein. Upon his exit the Cup had been absconded with. Story goes a university student was offering $100 for a night with the Grey Cup and after going home that evening was greeted with exactly that in her living room.
How could someone be so careless with a national treasure? Don’t worry he’s hated elsewhere too.
8. The 99th Grey Cup (2011) – Geezer Fight
BC 34 – Winnipeg 23 at BC Place in Vancouver
This will never get old. It ranks right up there with the 13th man in Grey Cup lore and was a classic Grey Cup moment the second it was captured on a cell phone. From the National Post:
“Throughout the proceedings prior to me being on stage he’s mouthing obscene statements to me,” said Kapp. “I’m into his bleeping game now, cussing and swearing.
“I took the flowers that were on our table and used it as an olive branch. I offered the olive branch and I got clubbed on the side of my head. What I did to him was nothing. I defended myself. He hit me with a goddam hammer.
“I’m not going to let it pass. What do you want me to do, turn the other cheek? The reaction I had was my reaction. I don’t want to fight. I’m sorry; that’s how anybody would respond,” he said.
Mosca said over the weekend he was surprised that Kapp still held a grudge over an incident which took place nearly 50 years ago.
“When I saw him, the kind of mood he was in, I wasn’t sure what to expect. I thought I’d be friendly. I said ‘How are you doing?’ He says ‘go (bleep) yourself,” Mosca told the Hamilton Spectator.
“I said ‘Do you have an axe to grind, to?’ He said go (expletive) yourself’ again. I reacted with my cane and then he punched me and I went down. Then he kicked me.’’
Ohhh please, please, please put these two back in a room (or ring) together.
“Cram it up your ass.”
9. The 100th Grey Cup (2012) – Mayor Rob Ford Falls Down Taking his own Snap
Toronto 35 – Calgary 22 at Rogers Centre on Toronto
Rob Ford started falling in November, 2012 and hasn’t stopped since. After being filmed falling at the 100th Grey Cup he would be videoed smoking crack, deny smoking crack, admit to smoking crack, admit to purchasing illegal narcotics and admit to drinking and driving.
The Argos and the CFL both asked him to stay away from this year’s Eastern Final but he showed up anyway. Apparently no one ever realized that asking/telling Rob Ford not to do something practically ensures that he will. Here’s hoping the 101st Grey Cup has its party crashed.
10. The 100th Grey Cup (2012) – Fans Carry the Cup to the Game for the First Time.
Toronto 35 – Calgary 22 at Rogers Centre on Toronto
The Vince Lombardi Trophy? It’s OK. The NBA whatever trophy? Uh? The Stanley Cup? It’s too revered with many fearful of touching it lest they contract a sports curse. The Grey Cup is inclusive and brings fans together. The CFL embraced its fans like no other professional sports league and had them march Lord Grey’s Cup through the streets of Toronto to Rogers Centre. Thousands of CFLers of all stripes took over the downtown core and declared what it meant to be Canadian.
Those lucky enough to be chosen to carry the Cup will forever remember the steps they took with Canada’s silver chalice as the CFL cemented its place in their hearts.
Can’t wait to see you all in Regina you scurvy dogs!
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