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It’s the best time of the year for football fans. 

South of the border, NFL teams are jockeying for playoff spots and NCAA teams are jockeying for invitations to the best bowl games. 

Meanwhile, the 54th Vanier Cup is in Quebec City on Nov. 24. The 106th Grey Cup is Nov. 25 in Edmonton. 

On this edition of Podcast, John Valentine, a professor at Edmonton’s MacEwan University, offers his thoughts to host Bob Mackin about the state of the CFL versus the NFL. Valentine spoke at the North American Society of the Sociology of Sport convention in Vancouver in early November. 

Also, hear from retired B.C. Lions’ centre Angus Reid about his new book, Thank You Coach: Learning How to Live, By Being Taught How to Play. Reid, a member of the Lions’ 2006 and 2011 Grey Cup-winning squads, talks about the football and life lessons he learned from offensive line coach Dan Dorazio and head coach Wally Buono, who retired this month as the winningest coach in CFL history. 

Both Valentine and Reid weigh-in on the future of football, a storied game facing waning interest in Canada’s major markets amid shifting demographics and ongoing concern over concussions. 

“It’s the greatest team sport because it has the most people participating for one common goal, where everybody is bringing what they can to the table,” Reid said. “We need this sport. It’s a great teaching tool, but we do always have to make sure we are improving it and making sure we are doing everything we can to make it as safe as possible.”

Plus Pacific Rim and Pacific Northwest headlines and commentaries. 

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