Summer football season in Sault Ste. Marie may seem like a few months off.
And it is.
But that doesn’t mean we can’t take a look ahead at it — and take one’s mind off the snow for just a bit.
Not that snow — or winter — can be classified in a negative category.
After all, if you live in Sault Ste. Marie — or Sudbury or North Bay for that matter — you should learn to live with snow and winter.
But ah yes, let’s talk a bit about summer football.
That is, preparations are ongoing for the 2017 Northern Football Conference season for the Sault Steelers.
Steeler management recently attended the NFC’s Annual General Meeting. And the AGM led to a still-tentative, regular-season schedule as well as some notable league news.
As of now, the regular season is slated to open on Saturday, May 27 when the Steelers would play host to the North Bay Bulldogs.
North Bay is returning to the NFC after a six-year absence and is one of two teams returning to the league, the Toronto Phantom Raiders being the other.
The NFC plan for the 2017 season includes 10 teams and two divisions.
The West Division will include the Sault, North Bay, Sudbury, Sarnia and Tri City. The East Division is shaping up as the aforementioned Phantom Raiders, Ottawa Invaders, GTA All Stars, Oakville Longhorns and Hamilton Steel City Patriots.
In other news from the AGM, Barry Rushon, a long-time figure in Sault Ste. Marie football circles, will return as league president. And Paul Caldbick — like Rushon, a former Steelers championship coach — will serve as league treasurer while returning as general manager of the Sault squad.
And the Steelers are planning to mark the 10th anniversary of the team’s 2007 national championship this season with a party-style game.