I’m not sure when it’ll happen. It could be this season. Most likely next. But I’ll be celebrating when the Edmonton Elks begin to start winning on a regular basis. These past two seasons have been tough on long time football fans in the Alberta Capital.
There used to be outright hatred between the Green and Gold and division rivals such as the Calgary Stampeders, the Saskatchewan Roughriders and even the Winnipeg Blue Bombers, now it feels like some of Edmonton’s rivals might actually feel sorry the Elks.
After decades of riding high, Edmonton is now experiencing the lowest of lows that many other CFL Franchises have gone through in league history.
So What’s it Going to Take to Turn Things Around?
That seems to be the universal question surrounding the Elks these days. Elks President Victor Cui is working his tail off, building bridges and creating relationships within the community. On the football side, head coach Chris Jones and assistant general manager Geroy Simon, are continuing to move chess pieces around the board-trying to bring in the right personnel while balancing the National/International ratios. I personally don’t think the Elks are cursed after the name change. The issues go back a few years before that when previous management regimes seem to have lost the handle on what made this proud franchise great.
Prediction: Winning Will Change Everything
I was talking to long time season ticket holder and fan Vern Glowitski. He flat out said that, “Winning will do more for marketing and putting fans in seats than anything.” I absolutely agree with him. Unfortunately that makes the current job for Cui and his team a bit more difficult at this time. They’ve been working hard on establishing the number one thing needed this season: Trust.
Add a few more wins to the trust that’s being reestablished in corners across the Edmonton and Northern Alberta, and the Green and Gold will be flying high again. I apologize if I come across as some kind of cheerleader, because I’m not. I’m just a fan. And, I get as frustrated as anyone when I see blown coverage, missed tackles, an overthrown ball at a critical moment or even a questionable personnel move. And to see Commonwealth Stadium as empty as it has been this season can be disheartening.
But this won’t last forever. The Elks have exciting young players such as Tre Ford, Taylor Cornelius and Kevin Brown. And veterans like Kenny Lawler, Jake Ceresna, Derel Walker and Jon Ryan are easy to cheer for. The tailgate parties are great idea, and so is reaching out to so many groups in the community. The Elks are doing the right things, it’s not a matter of “if” but ‘when’.
What Would You Do if You Were General Manager, Coach or President of the Elks?
Please don’t say change the name back, because that ship has sailed. If you had a say in what the Elks need to do to turn the franchise around, please respond with your comments in the space below. Keep it clean, this is a family show.