The coach reportedly had some unkind words for his players at the half in their last effort, calling into question their character and effort, perhaps the two greatest sins that a professional football player can be accused of in pursuit of their profession.
For the Toronto Argonauts, words probably do hurt, but so it seems is the way they are conducting themselves in this 2011 CFL campaign, an error prone, enthusiasm deprived squad that is watching their season pass them by from the basement suite of the CFL east.
The Argos seek to try and turn around some of that negative vibe this weekend and if they can't get pumped up for their competition, then yes Mr. Barker, your team is lacking character and lapsing in effort.
The Argos head down the road to Hamilton, a rivalry game that in most seasons would be the feature attraction of the Labour Day weekend. But in a CFL that sometimes can mess up a good thing, the famed summer ending showdown will come a few weeks early this year, as the CFL has readjusted its Labour Day scheduling for this year only we're told (and if they have any idea of how to market their league it had best be for one year only).
The TiCats have had moderate success thus far, some impressive victories racked up during the first six weeks, tempered by a few non performances where the dark days of seasons past seem to haunt their efforts.
Still, there's nothing like a visit from Toronto to get the folks in Hamilton ready for some football, and Saturday evening's kick off to a CFL week seven ending double header should provide some fascinating side stories to the traditional smash mouth of an Argos-Cats matchup.
Add into the mix the debut of a new defensive co-ordinator, as Orlondo Steinauer seeks to do what the recently departed Chip Garber couldn't, motivate a lacklustre Toronto Defensive squad on to a more physical and successful effort through all four quarters of football.
It's not the Labour Day classic, but with the Argos desperate to get back into the win column and the Cats looking to emphasize that this season won't be like some of the past, it could be a pretty interesting sixty minutes of football.
Game Time 7:00 PM ET (4 PM PT)
Toronto Star-- Labour Day classic comes early this year
Toronto Sun-- Williams can't wait to get hands on Boyd
Hamilton Spectator-- It's not Labour Day - but it should be a classic
Globe and Mail-- Steinauer to make debut as Argos defensive co-ordinator versus Ticats
National Post-- Tiger-Cats looking to maximize 'ugency'
Canada.com-- Ticats determined to scuttle Boatmen
Quick Snaps Hamilton Tiger Cats
Quick Snaps Toronto Argonauts
Toronto 32 at Hamilton 37
Toronto Sun-- The Usual suspect for Argos
Toronto Star-- New defence fails the test as Argos sunk by Ticats 37-32
Globe and Mail-- Tiger-Cats slip past Argos
National Post-- Tiger-Cats outlast Argos in wild shootout
Hamilton Spectator-- Cats prevail to win a nailbiter
Canada.com-- Ticats win Battle of Ontario classic