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Grey Cup still Canada's No. 1 TV show
[Ontario Edition]
Toronto Star - Toronto, Ont.
Date: Nov 25, 2001
Start Page: 05
Section: SPORTS
Abstract (Document Summary)

When the CBC brings Canadians the kickoff of today's 89th Grey Cup, it will do so with an arsenal of 16 cameras, 10 videotape machines for replays and a host of computerized gizmos.

It certainly didn't look that way when Toronto's CBLT paid the princely sum of $7,500 in 1952 to televise the Grey Cup game. It was seen only in Toronto, mainly because with only a few hundred thousand TV sets in the country the economics didn't add up. The first national telecast didn't take place until 1957 and even then the CBC had to subcontract ABC to carry the game to the Maritimes.

Almost instantly, the game became a valuable TV property. [Johnny Esaw] set his sights on football when CTV started up in 1961 and grabbed the Grey Cup for 1962, paying $220,000. Outrage ensued because a lot of Canadians couldn't get CTV at the time. The issue was even raised in Parliament. After much debate, the game was shown on both networks, with CBC reluctantly giving air time to CTV advertisers.

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