He owns virtually every rushing record for the Saskatchewan Roughriders, and on Wednesday, Canadian Football League (CFL) legend George Reed reached another milestone.
At 80 years young, Birthday Boy & legend George Reed stopped in at #Riders practice. He told the team he’s proud of the guys & feels like they’re a close knit team. When things go awry & guys do their own thing he cusses them out, but he says he hasn’t done that this year. #cfl pic.twitter.com/VucQNObKma— Claire Hanna (@clahanna) October 2, 2019
The running back is considered one of the greatest players to step on the CFL field, and to celebrate his 80th birthday, it’s no surprise Reed wanted to spend it where it felt most at home; with the Riders.
Reed spoke to the team following practice and Head Coach Craig Dickenson said it was an honour to have him there, “to have him come and just watch practice and be with us today was really neat.,"
The Riders are currently second in the West Division, with a record of 9-4. Reed has been watching, and told Dickenson, “he’s proud of the guys, and enjoyed watching them play together,"
A true champion of our game on and off the field. Please join me in wishing a very happy 80th to our beloved No. 34! https://t.co/Jjyckd1zS4— Randy Ambrosie (@RandyAmbrosie) October 2, 2019
"He felt like we were a close knit team. He says when things start going awry and guys start doing their own things he gets upset and he says ‘you might hear me cussing you out’ he says but I haven’t had to do that this year,” Dickenson said.
Dickenson says he’ll visit with the 80-year-old on his birthday, and joked that Reed looks better than he does.
“He’s royalty here and we’re very honoured that he came and spoke with us today,”
Reed played from 1963-1975 and still owns the CFL individual record for rushing attempts (3,243). He also had the most 1000-yard seasons in a career, reaching the mark 11 seasons, another CFL record. Most of the current Riders know the CFL Hall of Famer, whose number 34, was retired at the end of his career. For those who didn’t know the legends history, Dickenson quipped, “if you’re not sure, there’s a big statue of him out front. When you get a statue made of you, you know you’ve done some good things.”
“As good as he was at football, he’s an even better person,” Dickenson said.