’ 07 loss haunts ex- Bombers

Berry, Simp­son still curs­ing over Cup de­feat to Rid­ers

SundayXtra - - TRENDS - BY ED TAIT

ED­MON­TON — In­ter­est­ing ditty told this week by Bren­dan Ta­man, the Saskatchewan Roughrid­ers GM... So there was Ta­man just pass­ing by Doug Berry when he heard the Roughrider of­fen­sive co-or­di­na­tor let loose a curse word while watch­ing TV.

“( Many ex­ple­tives),” I can’t be­lieve he missed that tackle,” Ta­man over­heard Berry yell at the tube.

“ You know what game he was watch­ing?” said Ta­man. “ The 2007 Grey Cup.”

Yes there are some rather dom­i­nant themes to the 98th Grey Cup game to­day in Ed­mon­ton, the biggest for the Roughrid­ers be­ing the chance to avenge last year’s loss to the Mon­treal Alou­ettes and take some sting off the 13th-man de­ba­cle.

But for some­one like Berry — new to the Rid­ers this year along with for­mer Bomber as­sis­tant Bob Dyce and oth­ers — the game rep­re­sents an op­por­tu­nity to wash away the bit­ter­ness that may still linger from los­ing the 2007 Grey Cup to Saskatchewan. Same goes for linebacker Bar­rin Simp­son, who lost the 2006 game as a mem­ber of the B. C. Lions, was a Bomber for their loss in 2007 and is back again with the Rid­ers.

“ I want it bad,” said Simp­son Satur­day af­ter the Rid­ers’ fi­nal walk-through prac­tice of the 2010 sea­son. “ We want it bad as a team and it’s def­i­nitely in our power to get it done and cel­e­brate af­ter the game.

“ We haven’t done any cel­e­brat­ing this week, the party is for ev­ery­body else. We’re here for busi­ness and try­ing to get this Grey Cup ring.”

Asked if wear­ing Rider green still feels weird af­ter wear­ing Lions and Bombers colours for so long, Simp­son grinned.

“ The only time it was dif­fer­ent was when I signed,” he said. “ It was like, ‘ Wow, you’re in green now.’ But it feels right. It feels good. Third team, third Grey Cup with a dif­fer­ent team. Hope­fully, when we fin­ish this game, the dif­fer­ence will be hav­ing a ring on my fin­ger.”

Just for the record, on Satur­day both Simp­son — bum an­kle — and vet­eran corner Omarr Mor­gan were green-lighted to play by the Rider staff.

“ I’m healthy. I’m good to go and that’s what it comes down to,” Simp­son said. “ When we line up ( to­day) you’ll see No. 2 out there along with the rest of our boys. We’re go­ing to get af­ter it.”

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