The phrase Mexican wave has iconic connotations for UK based sports fans. It recalls the 1986 football (soccer) world cup played in Mexico. It’s not often 3 of the home nations qualify, but they did in this year.
For many on this side of the pond though there are two abiding memories. The hand of god goal and the Mexican Wave. Little did we know at the time that ‘the Wave’ was already a thing in North American sports.
Now, with constant internet access and global streaming, things are different. Now, if interested, we can keep up with a lot of things happening in the North American Sports leagues.
All of which is a convoluted way of getting to the point of the ‘Mexican Wave’ potentially coming to the CFL. This has nothing to do with the fan wave. This is about a potential influx of players from a new source.
The Mexican Connection
This weekend, scouts and representatives from the CFL are going to Mexico City to evaluate and recruit players. Those players will come from professional and amateur ranks. The event is being held by the
Liga de Futbol Americano Profesional in conjunction with the CFL
So the CFL and the Mexican pro league are hosting a combine on January 13 for leading pros and university seniors who hope to play in the CFL. A draft will follow on January 14.
51 athletes have been invited to a combine with a draft to follow. College and Liga de Futbol Americano players have been invited. According to Dan Barnes on twitter this will break down as 12 receivers, 10 defensive linemen, seven DBs, six LBs, five offensive linemen, four kickers, three RBs, three QBs and one fullback.
Why is this happening
If you are anything like me you will no next to nothing about these players. You may be left wondering just what the CFL is up to.
It seems like there are more questions than answers about the details of this experiment.
Could it be the AAF effect? CFL team building has already been impacted by this. Some players opted for the AAF over the CFL. Further, the CFL has seen a swathe of talent released to be signed by NFL teams recently.
You can argue that the latter happens every year. This year it feels particularly pronounced. Could this be because a lot of the talent the NFL would have looked at has gone the the AAF and so the NFL is mining deepr into CFL rosters?
This year is a CBA year for the league and players. We could take a cynical view. The league could be showing players there are wider talent pools to pick from. That there are replacement players in waiting out there.
Or we could be more optimistic. Is this the beginning of CFL 2.0? It would be great to see the league expand its footprint. Just not at the expense of its current players.
As ever it will be fascinating watching it all unfold.
Banner image from cfl.ca