DAVIS: Hopson and Terry worthy inductees to Riders’ Plaza of Honour

Jim Hopson wasn’t nearly as good an offensive lineman as John Terry.

Yet when it comes to the Saskatchewan Roughriders enshrining both men into their Plaza of Honour, Hopson is a shoo-in while Terry is one of those inductees who the fans might say, “Hmmm, I think I remember him.”

That’s not personal bias simply because I wrote a book with Hopson, who played nondescript guard for his hometown Roughriders from 1973-76 and later became the CFL team’s first non-volunteer, paid, full-time president and CEO. Hopson served in that capacity from 2005-15 as the community-owned franchise won two Grey Cups, appeared in two others, became the CFL’s wealthiest franchise and prepared to move into a brand-new stadium that the Roughriders helped finance.

Hopson’s exploits were well-documented in “Running the Riders: My Decade as CEO of Canada’s Team.” He hand-wrote it, handed me the pages so I could type them, fact-check and embellish (or edit) when necessary.

It’s a pretty good book and shows how Hopson changed the franchise’s mindset from “poor-us” to “we’re-the-best,” an attitude that translated onto the field and into the grandstands, right to the cash register. Of particular interest to his co-author, who was the Roughriders beat writer for the Regina Leader-Post during part of Hopson’s tenure, was the process of replacing general manager Roy Shivers and head coach Danny Barrett with Eric Tillman and Kent Austin, respectively, who subsequently led the Roughriders to the 2007 Grey Cup.

Terry is also a familiar subject, although he admittedly isn’t a well-known name in Rider history. A native of Greenwood, South Carolina, Terry was one of my favourite players because, like most offensive linemen, he was approachable, intelligent and available during the offseason for phone-call updates.

Terry played the offensive line’s most important position, left tackle, from 1996-2001 with the Roughriders, sandwiched between two stints with the Toronto Argonauts. A three-time Western all-star and twice a CFL all-star, Terry was with the Roughriders during a downturn in their fortunes, although they surprisingly made a Grey Cup appearance in 1997 and lost to the Doug Flutie-led Toronto Argonauts.

One of their most memorable road trips during Terry’s stay came in September, 2001, when their game against the Calgary Stampeders was delayed following the 9/11 terror attacks in the U.S. The Roughriders eschewed their flight arrangements in the aftermath of the hijackings and instead took buses to Calgary, where they were holed up in a luxury hotel for five days with a minimal amount of clothes and — because of the terror attack’s effect on businesses and banking — needed the CFL to help finance some of their expenses.

Like his fellow American teammates, Terry was insightful, emotional and worried about friends and family in the States, while trying to stay prepared for a game that initially was going to be played as scheduled until CFL Commissioner Michael Lysko decided to delay it to Monday, September 17 from Friday, September 14. Calgary won the game and went on to become Grey Cup champion while Saskatchewan missed the playoffs.

After retiring from football, Terry appeared in a television series about pro football players. He was a paid actor. Now he’s in the Roughriders’ Plaza of Honour, to be enshrined with Hopson during festivities Aug. 17 in Regina.

Maybe Terry would like to write a book, too.

Darrell Davis

Darrell Davis

Darrell Davis has reported on the Riders for more than 20 years and was inducted into the Canadian Football Hall of Fame media wing in 2006.
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Darrell Davis
About Darrell Davis (116 Articles)
Darrell Davis has reported on the Riders for more than 20 years and was inducted into the Canadian Football Hall of Fame media wing in 2006.

52 Comments on DAVIS: Hopson and Terry worthy inductees to Riders’ Plaza of Honour

  1. Mr Red // May 8, 2018 at 2:19 pm //

    Hopkins makes sense. Congratulations to him.

    I gotta tell you, I teared up listening to the heroic 9/11 story of bravery, staying in that terrible luxury hotel (on the leagues dime) and barely having enough clothes! Did he detail the bravery of having to phone the front desk to arrange laundry service? He had to go out for dinner that night in only his second favorite pair of pants, then after dinner returned belly full to his room facing the horrible task of taking his newly laundered clothes out of the plastic, scratching his hand on that awful metal coat hanger. There should be a statue!

    • C....UR...Soul // May 8, 2018 at 2:36 pm //

      Just think without the Riders to hate it appears you have no daily purpose….Isn’t that just a little scary red? Proof that the Riders truly own you in all ways..Your right there should be a statue!! Go Riders!!!

    • Greenland // May 8, 2018 at 2:51 pm //

      Man I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again. You have some serious issues. Get some help.

    • The name is Hopson!!!!

      • Bleeding Green // May 10, 2018 at 1:46 am //

        The Hopkins quip was on purpose to get a reaction. Just a lonely old man that loves to argue.

    • I strongly urge people who are tired of this fool, Mr.Red, to email 3Downnation and ask that he be banned again. Yes, again. A supposedly grown man can’t accept being banned with cause from a website and makes numerous attempts to circumvent measures put in place to block him. He has that big of a problem. So please everyone go to the “Contact Us” section and email the administrators asking that Mr.Red be banned.
      Be sure to mention the specific articles were he is commenting.
      Its for the good of everyone, including him.

  2. Habsnriders // May 8, 2018 at 3:07 pm //

    Two well deserving men . What Hobson did for the riders is unmeasurable .

    • Bleeding Green // May 10, 2018 at 1:48 am //

      I did some work in Hopson’s personal office on the corner of Albert and Dewdney before they moved. One of the nicest, down to earth guys I’ve ever met. Took a real interest in a young punk (myself) working in his office!

  3. riderontheisland // May 8, 2018 at 3:11 pm //

    People, please ignore this loser and focus on the articles. He likes the negative attention.

    • Mr Red // May 8, 2018 at 3:14 pm //

      come on, you must admit its kind of silly

      • Green=Money // May 8, 2018 at 5:47 pm //

        Obviously the apology to Toronto, Humboldt, and Narcisse in the other story was insincere. Wow

    • Bleeding Green // May 10, 2018 at 1:49 am //

      Exactly. Didn’t see this post until after I posted the same thing above.

  4. Lancaster/Reed // May 8, 2018 at 3:20 pm //

    Best thing Hopson did was tell the old boys club in the executive to piss off. That the Riders would become a true business and would no longer react to their every whim.

  5. MR. Green // May 8, 2018 at 3:29 pm //

    Guy, who cares where they stayed. Millions around the world were forced to stay where they did not want to be. People pulled together and supported each other, as the league supported it’s players. What’s silly and dumb is your rude pathetic comment around a tradgedy, picking on people who like many others on this planet were left scrambling. Brain dead selfish comment. I’d tell you to think about that logically, you have no filter, logic or sense, just hate. Go for a walk, smoke a joint, have a beer and get off your @$$. Maybe if you smoke weed you will “catch” a normal thought. Try something.

    • Mr Red // May 8, 2018 at 3:36 pm //

      Come on. Yes I’m fully aware of what happened that day, we all are. Planes were landed and people stranded without access to even the seediest of motels. People let near large airporst let people in their homes. It happened in Calgary and probably happened in Regina/Saskatoon too.
      However the riders busing to Calgary for a planned trip only to learn a game was postponed 3 days ranks pretty low on the 9/11 hardship list.

  6. MR. Green // May 8, 2018 at 3:35 pm //

    Well deserved to both. Jim is awesome. My family and I have known him many years. Jim was also my elementary School principal in the 80’s. Last time I ran into him was at a Boston Pizza in Moose Jaw. Can’t remember why I went to Moose Jaw that day, but it was nice to have lunch with him. His hiring was what turned us around. Classy man with a bug heart.

  7. MR. Green // May 8, 2018 at 3:35 pm //

    Well deserved to both. Jim is awesome. My family and I have known him many years. Jim was also my elementary School principal in the 80’s. Last time I ran into him was at a Boston Pizza in Moose Jaw. Can’t remember why I went to Moose Jaw that day, but it was nice to have lunch with him. His hiring was what turned us around. Classy man with a big heart.

  8. Red you a complete a$$hole.

  9. greenenvy? // May 8, 2018 at 4:18 pm //

    No denying it. Good choices. Well deserved.

  10. Scottsask // May 8, 2018 at 4:26 pm //

    Congrats to both, great comment Lancaster/Reed. Couldn’t agree more.

  11. Mr Red // May 8, 2018 at 6:21 pm //

    Must get 1 fact straight from this article.
    The riders are not the richest franchise.
    The Toronto Argonauts are worth $1.6 billion and the Calgary Stampeders are worth $750 million

  12. The Argos are worth 1.6 billion ? bahahahaha

    • Mr Red // May 8, 2018 at 8:26 pm //

      Thats what the company is worth

      • Lancaster/Reed // May 8, 2018 at 9:18 pm //

        Well red, since the Riders are a community owned team, that means all of sask are owners. Sasktel alone is worth over $4 billion. Puts the stamps $750k worth to shame.

  13. Mr Red // May 8, 2018 at 8:30 pm //

    The Saskatchewan roughriders
    Sept 13 2001 to Sept 17 2001
    Let us never forget

    • Green&Gold // May 8, 2018 at 8:39 pm //

      Holy guy. No filter whatsoever

    • True green // May 8, 2018 at 10:46 pm //

      Dude you have no class.
      And all the article said was “one of his most memeorable road trips”. It didn’t go in to say how hard done by they were, it’s just recounted memories of that trip. And It was one paragraph in the article.

      Putting the a$$ in class as usual.

      • ‘The Roughriders eschewed their flight arrangements in the aftermath of the hijackings and instead took buses to Calgary, where they were holed up in a luxury hotel for five days with a minimal amount of clothes and — because of the terror attack’s effect on businesses and banking — needed the CFL to help finance some of their expenses”. Sounds a little non-stoic to me

        • True green // May 9, 2018 at 12:02 am //

          I think you should look up stoic.

          He was recounting a memory. They gave up a flight and stayed in a luxury hotel. They are stating facts. Hardly trying to sound hard done by, by mentioning the quality of the hotel. He lack of clothes again was just a fact, a part of the memeory. No one is trying to look like a hero here… if they were this would have been recounted very differently. This is just your obsession running at its usual wild and frantic pace to spin something negative out of nothing.

          • My use of the word stoic fits perfect. First of all, they gave up flights, Had no clothes, holed up in a hotel. This sounds like someone complaining and pontificating to me.

  14. This is totally inappropriate. What about the Black participants in the great success story that is Rider Nation. Disgusting!!!!

    • Ibleedgreen1111 // May 9, 2018 at 1:08 am //

      You should do reread the story and look at the pictures of the 2 individuals that are getting entered.

      Better yet you should read up on the Plaza of Honor and see who has been inducted.

      Go Riders!
      Go CFL!!

    • Riders23 // May 9, 2018 at 4:32 am //

      Well, Reed is still likely the most honored Rider ever , and # 3 on the list would probably be Narco, so your Rider nation fails to honor blacks is total crap!!! Roy shivers would be in the Plaza by now but Roy is being Roy , once Roy stops being angry about being let go as GM, he will heal and then will be in the plaza. I talked about every year. Same as Omar Morgan something went down and Omar has his nose outta joint . Richie Hall will be in once he stops coaching etc etc . and if ya didn’t notice John Terry the olineman this year going in is black as well. So again your comment is so off base its insulting !!!

      • Are you kidding me??? Roy Shivers is honor worthy?
        That would prove my theory.
        The plaza of the common

    • Green&Gold // May 9, 2018 at 9:10 am //

      Racism at it’s best. You are a loser

  15. ADIDAS // May 9, 2018 at 4:27 am //

    Mr Red = 403 maggot.

  16. Bleeding Green // May 10, 2018 at 1:19 am //

    Red – almost 1/3 of the comments on another Rider thread. Give your head a shake. 2 very deserving men of this honor. Yet Red will find a way to make this post negative. I hope you get banned.

Comments are closed.