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(pictured, Corey Chamblin, Head Coach of the Saskatchewan Roughriders at a media scrum during the events of the 2013 Grey Cup in Regina)
This is fitting during this month of Black History.
Yesterday, Corey Chamblin won the Coach of the Year Award for his work during the 2013 season with the Riders, who capped off an incredible year with a 43-23 win over the Hamilton Tiger-Cats.
Corey Chamblin is the second black head coach to win the Grey Cup, the first being Mike “Pinball” Clemmons of the Toronto Argonauts in 2004.  Two years later, Tony Dungy would be the field boss for the Indianapolis Colts as they’d win the Super Bowl, the first black head coach to have such a championship season in the NFL.
Black players have been common place in the CFL for decades.  Black Quarterbacks were seen often on CFL teams during the 1970s, years before they’d become common in the NFL.  CFL teams with a higher percentage of black players often outperformed other teams, and helped their teams gain the most on-field success.
That’s not to say the CFL was devoid of racism.  It was there, as legendary player Cookie Gilchrist, the only player to refuse induction into the Canadian Football Hall of Fame, cited racism and exploitation by team management.
Here in Saskatchewan, Corey Chamblin will be remembered for decades to come.  As will players Darian Durant, Geroy Simon, Taj Smith, Diamond Ferrie, Tyron Brackenridge, and Korey Sheets.  They were members of a team that did it all in front of their home crowd.  Their play and the fact they hoisted the Grey Cup will sit beside the like of the ‘66, ‘89 and ‘07 Roughriders.
And it all begins with the second black head coach to win a Grey Cup, Corey Chamblin.

(pictured, Corey Chamblin, Head Coach of the Saskatchewan Roughriders at a media scrum during the events of the 2013 Grey Cup in Regina)
This is fitting during this month of Black History.
Yesterday, Corey Chamblin won the Coach of the Year Award for his work during the 2013 season with the Riders, who capped off an incredible year with a 43-23 win over the Hamilton Tiger-Cats.
Corey Chamblin is the second black head coach to win the Grey Cup, the first being Mike “Pinball” Clemmons of the Toronto Argonauts in 2004. Two years later, Tony Dungy would be the field boss for the Indianapolis Colts as they’d win the Super Bowl, the first black head coach to have such a championship season in the NFL.
Black players have been common place in the CFL for decades. Black Quarterbacks were seen often on CFL teams during the 1970s, years before they’d become common in the NFL. CFL teams with a higher percentage of black players often outperformed other teams, and helped their teams gain the most on-field success.
That’s not to say the CFL was devoid of racism. It was there, as legendary player Cookie Gilchrist, the only player to refuse induction into the Canadian Football Hall of Fame, cited racism and exploitation by team management.
Here in Saskatchewan, Corey Chamblin will be remembered for decades to come. As will players Darian Durant, Geroy Simon, Taj Smith, Diamond Ferrie, Tyron Brackenridge, and Korey Sheets. They were members of a team that did it all in front of their home crowd. Their play and the fact they hoisted the Grey Cup will sit beside the like of the ‘66, ‘89 and ‘07 Roughriders.
And it all begins with the second black head coach to win a Grey Cup, Corey Chamblin.

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