16. Canadian Clubs: 20th century Canadian football
Ever since 1880, the American game had been played eleven-a-side. Burnside suggested Canada fielded twelve. Perhaps teams of eleven would have made it too laughingly obvious that he was not far short of suggesting a wholesale imitation of the game that was going down a storm in the States.
And just as Ontario and Quebec looked to be settling their differences, a new division emerged between the eastern clubs and the newer ones emerging in the west.
Not even when the Grey Cup was instigated in 1909 was there anything remotely resembling a standard code of Canadian football.
Eventually most American innovations, including the forward pass, found their way north, but there was never a wholesale importation of the American code, meaning that several quirks of history remain in the CFL.