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2012 CFL season

2012 CFL season
Regular season
Duration June 29, 2012 – November 3, 2012
Start date November 11, 2012
East Champions Toronto Argonauts2012-11-18
West Champions Calgary Stampeders2012-11-18
100th Grey Cup
Date November 25, 2012
Site Rogers Centre, Toronto
Champions Toronto Argonauts
2011  CFL seasons  2013

The 2012 CFL season was the 59th season of modern Canadian professional football. Officially, it was the 55th season for the Canadian Football League. The pre-season began on June 13, 2012 and the regular season started on June 29, 2012.[1] Rogers Centre in Toronto hosted the 100th Grey Cup on November 25, with the hometown Toronto Argonauts defeating the Calgary Stampeders 35-22.

CFL news in 2012

Salary cap

According to the new collective bargaining agreement, the 2012 salary cap will be set at $4,350,000. As per the agreement, the cap is fixed and will not vary with league revenue performance. The minimum team salary will be set at $4,000,000 with individual minimum salaries set at $44,000.[2]

Season schedule

The 2012 season schedule was released on February 18, 2012, with the regular season opening on June 29 at Ivor Wynne Stadium in Hamilton, Ontario.[3] This marked the first time Hamilton has opened the year since 2009. Additionally, the league returned to division match-ups in the final week of the regular season, which was also last seen in 2009. Following an interruption in the Labour Day Classic in 2011 between the Toronto Argonauts and Hamilton Tiger-Cats, the two teams resumed their historic series in 2012. There were 15 double headers this year, with four on Fridays, eight on Saturdays, one on Sundays, and two (the traditional Labour Day and Thanksgiving contests) on Mondays.

The BC Lions opened their regular season schedule at the newly refurbished BC Place Stadium and spent their first full season there after splitting time between that stadium and Empire Field in 2011. The Winnipeg Blue Bombers spent the first four weeks of the regular season on the road as their home opener at the brand new Investors Group Field was to take place in week 5; however, construction delays pushed back the opening of the new stadium to 2013, forcing the Blue Bombers to continue playing at Canad Inns Stadium during the season.[4][5] The Tiger-Cats played—and won—their final regular season home game at Ivor Wynne Stadium on October 27 as the stadium will be demolished following the 2012 season.[6] Unlike the previous two seasons, there was no game played in Moncton, New Brunswick as part of the Touchdown Atlantic promotion, due to the league wanting to focus on plans for the 100th Grey Cup festival.[7]

Bye weeks

This year's bye weeks occurred in the sixth and seventh weeks of the season, earlier than the usual eighth and ninth week setup that has been in place since 2007. This was likely done to accommodate the 2012 Summer Olympics, and the television coverage they demanded, which took place over these two weeks.[8]

Uniform changes

According to an email, Reebok and the CFL were in the process of designing new home and away uniforms for each of the eight teams for 2012.[9] On April 11, 2012, it was officially announced that all eight teams would be playing in re-engineered jerseys that feature increased elasticity, improved resiliency and moisture wicking technology.[10] East Division teams released their jersey designs on May 1, while West Division teams unveiled their new jerseys on May 2.[11]

Rule changes

On April 18, 2012 the CFL announced that they had unanimously approved a rule change that will see all scoring plays subject to video review. All touchdowns would be reviewed by the referees, without a team having to use its challenge flag. Due to a surprising number of incidents related to players helmets falling off during play in the 2011 CFL season, the league decided to change its rules to address this issue. Now if a ball carrier's helmet comes off the play will be blown dead immediately. If a non-ball carrier's helmet comes off that player can no longer participate in the play. If he does, the player's team will be penalized 10 yards for illegal participation. If a player hits an opposing player who isn't participating because he lost his helmet, the offending player's team will be penalized 15 yards for unnecessary roughness.[12]

100th Grey Cup

Toronto was the site of the 100th Grey Cup as it was also host of the very first game and host of the 50th Grey Cup as well. As part of the celebration, the Grey Cup festival stretched over nine days as opposed to the usual three.[13] The Government of Canada will also contribute $5 million towards the event in celebration of a Canadian tradition.[14]

Records and milestones

  • On June 29, while playing against the Winnipeg Blue Bombers and with the former record holder Milt Stegall in attendance, Geroy Simon became the all-time CFL career reception yards leader, surpassing the previous mark of 15,153 yards.[15]
  • On September 3, Chris Williams surpassed Henry Williams for most kick return touchdowns in a single season with his sixth (five punt returns, one missed field goal return). In the same game, he also set a new record for most consecutive games with a return touchdown with three.[16]
  • On October 12, Andrew Harris set a new single-season record for yards from scrimmage by a Canadian, surpassing Terry Evanshen's mark of 1,662 yards set in 1967. Harris finished with 1,830 yards, becoming the second non-import to lead the league in yards from scrimmage.[17][18]
  • On November 1, Chad Owens passed Michael Clemons for most combined yards in a season with a 29-yard kickoff return. Owens finished the season with 3,863 all-purpose yards while also becoming the first professional football player to record three 3,000-yard seasons. Owens also became the first player to lead the league in both receiving yards (1,328) and total kick return yards (2,510).[19][20]
  • On November 2, Jon Cornish surpassed Normie Kwong for most rushing yards in a season by a Canadian, finishing with 1,457 rushing yards. Cornish also finished first in rushing, which was the first time that a non-import led the league in rushing since Orville Lee in 1988.[19][21]
  • On November 2, J. C. Sherritt recorded his 130th tackle, passing Calvin Tiggle's mark of 129 for most tackles in a single season.[19][22]


Coaching changes

The 2012 off-season saw significant changes in key personal across the league. After winning the 99th Grey Cup, the then head coach of the BC Lions, Wally Buono, resigned from being the head coach so he could focus on his duties as general manager. The Lions promoted Mike Benevides, who was the defensive coordinator for four seasons, to head coach. After an 8-10 season, the Hamilton Tiger-Cats fired head coach Marcel Bellefeuille and hired George Cortez who has had extensive coaching experience with many different CFL teams. Following a very disappointing 2011 season, the Saskatchewan Roughriders hired Corey Chamblin as their new head coach. Finally, the Toronto Argonauts hired Scott Milanovich who had been the offensive coordinator of the Montreal Alouettes for four seasons, to replace Jim Barker who, like Wally Buono, resigned from being the head coach to focus on being general manager.

Regular season


Teams play eighteen regular season games, playing two of the three divisional opponents three times, the other four times, and teams from the opposing division twice. Teams are awarded two points for a win and one point for a tie. The top three teams in each division qualify for the playoffs, with the first place team gaining a bye to the divisional finals. A fourth place team in one division may qualify ahead of the third place team in the other division (the "Crossover"), if they earn more points in the season.[1] Such was the case in the 2012 season; Edmonton (the fourth-place team in the West) had more points than Winnipeg (the third-place team in the East).

If two or more teams in the same division are equal in points, the following tiebreakers apply: [2]

  • a) Most wins in all games
  • b) Head to head winning percentage (matches won divided by all matches played)
  • c) Head to head points difference
  • d) Head to head points ratio
  • e–g) Tiebreakers b–d applied sequentially to all divisional games
  • h–i) Tiebreakers c–d applied sequentially to all league games
  • j) Coin toss


  • 1. If two clubs remain tied after other club(s) are eliminated during any step, tie breakers reverts to step a).
  • 2. Tiebreakers do not apply to the Crossover. To cross over a team must have more points than the third place team.


Note: GP = Games Played, W = Wins, L = Losses, T = Ties, PF = Points For, PA = Points Against, Pts = Points

Teams in bold are in playoff positions.
X – clinched playoff berth
Y – clinched first place and bye to division final

West Division
Team GP W L T PF PA Pts
Y-BC Lions 18 13 5 0 481 354 26 Details
X-Calgary Stampeders 18 12 6 0 534 431 24 Details
X-Saskatchewan Roughriders 18 8 10 0 457 409 16 Details
X-Edmonton Eskimos 18 7 11 0 422 450 14 Details
East Division
Team GP W L T PF PA Pts
Y-Montreal Alouettes 18 11 7 0 478 489 22 Details
X-Toronto Argonauts 18 9 9 0 445 491 18 Details
Winnipeg Blue Bombers 18 6 12 0 376 531 12 Details
Hamilton Tiger-Cats 18 6 12 0 538 576 12 Details

CFL playoffs

Main article: 100th Grey Cup

The Toronto Argonauts won their 16th Grey Cup championship on home turf at the Rogers Centre by defeating the Calgary Stampeders. Argonauts' running back Chad Kackert was named the MVP, while Argonauts' defensive end, Ricky Foley was named the Grey Cup's Most Valuable Canadian.

Playoff bracket

  November 11:
Division Semi-Finals
    November 18:
Division Finals
    November 25:
100th Grey Cup
Rogers CentreToronto
  East     E2  Toronto Argonauts 27  
  W4  Edmonton Eskimos 26     E1  Montreal Alouettes 20    
  E2  Toronto Argonauts 42         E2  Toronto Argonauts 35
      W2  Calgary Stampeders 22
  West     W2  Calgary Stampeders 34    
  W3  Saskatchewan Roughriders 30     W1  BC Lions 29  
  W2  Calgary Stampeders 36  

CFL Leaders

Award winners

CFL Player of the Week

Week Offensive Player of the Week Defensive Player of the Week Special Teams Player of the Week Outstanding Canadian
One Darian Durant J. C. Sherritt Grant Shaw Jon Cornish
Two Brandon Whitaker Adam Bighill Larry Taylor Andrew Harris
Three Anthony Calvillo Jerald Brown Chris Williams Shea Emry
Four Henry Burris Joe Burnett Justin Palardy Andy Fantuz
Five Henry Burris J. C. Sherritt Daryl Townsend Andrew Harris
Six Brandon Whitaker Adam Bighill Sean Whyte James Yurichuk
Seven Jon Cornish J. C. Sherritt Larry Taylor Jon Cornish
Eight Joey Elliott Alex Hall Chris Williams Cauchy Muamba
Nine S. J. Green Charleston Hughes Chris Williams Jon Cornish
Ten Chad Owens Ahmad Carroll Chris Williams Jon Cornish
Eleven Chad Kackert Jason Vega Demond Washington Jon Cornish
Twelve Travis Lulay Brock Campbell Tim Brown Shawn Gore
Thirteen Chad Simpson Adam Bighill Trent Guy Henoc Muamba
Fourteen Henry Burris Adam Bighill Trent Guy Jon Cornish
Fifteen Joey Elliott Chris Thompson Sandro DeAngelis Andrew Harris
Sixteen Hugh Charles Shea Emry Grant Shaw Shea Emry
Seventeen Jamel Richardson Keon Raymond Weston Dressler Jon Cornish
Eighteen Ricky Ray Anwar Stewart Tim Brown Andre Durie
Nineteen Henry Burris J. C. Sherritt Swayze Waters Henoc Muamba
Twenty Drew Tate Keon Raymond Chad Owens Jon Cornish
Twenty-one Chad Owens Marcus Ball Paul McCallum Jon Cornish


CFL Player of the Month

Month Offensive Player of the Month Defensive Player of the Month Special Teams Player of the Month Outstanding Canadian
July Henry Burris J. C. Sherritt Chris Williams Andrew Harris
August Anthony Calvillo J. C. Sherritt Chris Williams Jon Cornish
September Travis Lulay J. C. Sherritt Luca Congi Jon Cornish
October Fred Stamps Adam Bighill Rene Paredes Jon Cornish


2012 CFL All-Stars



Special teams

2012 CFL Western All-Stars



Special teams

2012 CFL Eastern All-Stars



Special teams

2012 CFLPA All-Stars



Special teams

2012 Gibson's Finest CFL Awards


  1. ^ "2012 CFL schedule". Retrieved 2012-09-15. 
  2. ^ "New CFL-CFLPA CBA at a glance". Retrieved 2011-09-02. 
  3. ^ "2012 CFL Schedule is here". 2012-02-18. Retrieved 2012-09-15. 
  4. ^ Canada. "Construction delays set back Blue Bombers stadium debut". Retrieved 2012-09-15. 
  5. ^ Lawless, Gary. "First game in new stadium could be as early as Sept. 9: Bombers". Winnipeg Free Press. Retrieved 2012-09-15. 
  6. ^ The Canadian Press (2011-08-31). "Officials scrap renos, will rebuild Ivor Wynne Stadium". Retrieved 2012-09-15. 
  7. ^ Feb 16, 2012 1:10 PM AT (2012-02-16). "CFL sacks plans for 2012 game in Moncton". Retrieved 2012-09-15. 
  8. ^ "2012 Schedule: Wants and Needs". 2012-02-18. Retrieved 2012-09-15. 
  9. ^ "CFL will re-design jerseys for 2012 season". 2010-02-12. Retrieved 2012-09-15. 
  10. ^ "Coming Soon: Re-Engineered Jerseys For 2012". Retrieved 2012-09-15. 
  11. ^ "Reengineered jerseys to be unveiled May 1-2". Retrieved 2012-09-15. 
  12. ^ "Rule Changes". Retrieved 2012-09-15. 
  13. ^ Invitation to Our Nation to celebrate in Toronto in 2012
  14. ^ "Political football". Retrieved 2012-09-15. 
  15. ^ Catching History: Simon breaks receiving yards record
  16. ^ Boatmen battle back for Labour Day victory over Ticats
  17. ^ Harris runs his way into CFL record books
  18. ^ Roarin' Orange: Lions come alive to down 'Cats
  19. ^ a b c Major milestones headline final week of regular season
  20. ^ Owens sets new CFL record for combined yardage
  21. ^ Cornish runs his way into Canadian history
  22. ^ Esks' Sherritt tackles his way into the record book
  23. ^ "CFLapedia". 
  24. ^ "Gibson's Finest CFL Players of the Week". Canadian Football League. Retrieved 2012-09-20. 
  25. ^ "Gibson's Finest CFL Players of the Month". Canadian Football League. Retrieved 2012-09-20. 
Preceded by
2011 CFL season
CFL seasons Succeeded by
2013 CFL season