When told in the wake of the loss that he’d won the Most Valuable Canadian in the 105th Grey Cup, running back Jerome Messam thought it would be best to not go accept his award.
“Basically just numb,” says Messam, who contributed two touchdowns in a losing cause. “For us to lose the way we did two years in a row, it’s a really sickening feeling. I really didn’t want to go out there and say something I didn’t mean or say something in the heat of the moment that put myself in a bad spot.
“I just feel blessed and thankful for them to be able to give me that recognition throughout the game. But it doesn’t really mean much without the Grey Cup.”
While there was a lot of focus on the Argos’ two long, tide-turning touchdowns, Messam prefers to look at the big picture.
“It’s a 60-minute football game, there’s a lot of other things that went down for us to be in that position,” says Messam. “There were a lot of plays that happened that was a series of unfortunate events for us. “
Photo by Mark Shannon
Heading into the Western Final, Messam had to fight to keep his starting job. He answered and delivered a strong post-season performance that included three touchdowns.
“I’ve got a lot of juice left,” says the eight-year veteran. “I’m very good with motivation. When people start to doubt me or naysayers telling me I can’t do something, I’m the first one to jump up and say I can and I want to prove it to them. People that have watched me throughout my career, as a Stampeder, they know regardless, I’m giving it my all in the regular season but when it comes to playoff time, every playoff game I’ve played here I’ve done my best and pulled my weight.”
Messam would love for nothing more than keep playing in the Red and White.
“I’m just optimistic. I still have a lot of football left in me,” says the 32-year-old. “I want to be here with this team next year and hopefully we can get it done. If they offer me a contract, I’ll be here.”