February 17, 2012 - Canadian Football League (CFL) - B.C. Lions
(Vancouver) The reigning CFL champion BC Lions will open their first full season at BC Place since 2009 with a Grey Cup rematch versus the Winnipeg Blue Bombers on Friday, June 29th (7:00 pm) as the CFL released its 2012 schedule this morning.
The Leos will begin their 59th season with back-to-back home tilts as the Hamilton Tiger-Cats come calling a week later on Friday, July 6th (7:00 pm).
The 2012 Lions home schedule includes a total of four Friday night tilts and four Saturday match-ups in September and October, two of which are afternoon affairs. Fans of the Lions will also enjoy a Sunday afternoon kickoff in August in the club's first full slate of games at the recently-renovated BC Place.
"Last season, we enjoyed the best of both worlds playing summer games outdoors at Empire Field before moving into BC Place in the fall. This year, our fans will get to enjoy the best BC Place has to offer throughout the entire season," said Lions president and CEO Dennis Skulsky.
The Lions take on the Edmonton Eskimos in a Western Final rematch on Friday, July 20th (7:00 pm) and host division rival Saskatchewan on August 19th (4:00 pm) for their only home date in August.
"When the schedule comes out each year you can't help but get very excited," said Lions head coach Mike Benevides. "Starting the season with two games at home and finishing with division rivals in the last three games will be great for the players and our fans."
In September, the Lions will take on East Division foes as Montreal makes the trip west on Saturday, September 8th (1:00 pm start) and Toronto travels to Vancouver on Saturday the 15th (4:00 pm).
"I'm very excited about hosting three afternoon games this year," added Skulsky. "Not only is it an opportunity for us to open the roof and take advantage of Canada's best sports and entertainment venue, it will also enable fans who are travelling in from the Interior and Vancouver Island to see more games."
In October, the Lions host Calgary on Saturday the 6th (7:00 pm) and Edmonton on Friday the 19th (7:00 pm). The club wraps up the regular season schedule with a Saturday night tilt versus Saskatchewan on November 3rd (7:00 pm).
BC Lions 2012 season tickets are now on sale, call 604.589.ROAR for details or visit bclions.com.