CFL responds to CFLPA investigating sanctions against players under ‘serious allegations’

The CFL Players’ Association says it is investigating league sanctions against players who have recently been the subject of “serious allegations.”

A statement issued by the CFLPA on Wednesday said its role as the players’ union is to “protect the due process rights of all CFLPA members.

“In that capacity, we are investigating CFL actions against players who have been identified in these cases.”

The statement did not specify which cases the CFLPA was investigating, but the league has recently said it will not register a contract for released players Teague Sherman and Jerome Messam after they were charged with criminal offences.

Ottawa police charged Sherman, a former Redblacks defensive back, with two counts of sexual assault on July 18. Messam, a running back, was released by the Saskatchewan Roughriders after being charged with voyeurism by Calgary police on July 30.

In both cases, the player was essentially barred by the league from signing with another team. Neither of the alleged offences have been proven in court.

“Our concern is that the CFL office has subjectively and on a case-by-case basis imposed sanctions against these players – citing league policies that may be contradictory to the collective bargaining agreement,” the union said.

CFL commissioner Randy Ambrosie said he was aware of the CFLPA’s statement in his own statement.

“On behalf of the CFL, I can tell you that we take our policy on violence against women and our commitment to safe communities very seriously,” Ambrosie said.

“We look at each situation on a case by case basis using the best and most reliable information available to us. Beyond that, we cannot comment further on individual cases that are before the courts. We have discussed these matters with the CFLPA and will continue to do so in the future because we believe in an open and constructive dialogue with its leaders.”



43 Comments on CFL responds to CFLPA investigating sanctions against players under ‘serious allegations’

  1. Pop Gun Offence // August 8, 2018 at 5:37 pm //

    Yet, they are ok with Johnny Football playing. I guess there is a fiscal caveat for just how far the league will go to decry violence towards women.

    • Dave Smith // August 8, 2018 at 6:17 pm //

      Johnny admitted his actions, did everything asked of him, and was never convicted of any crime. But of a difference. Don’t believe these guys should be considered guilty without due process

  2. Would you lose your job if the police charged you with a crime? or would your employer wait until you are convicted? You are supposed to be innocent until proven guilty.
    We only know the charges but we don’t know what their defense is, they could be innocent.

    • Harvey Weinstein hasn’t been convicted yet, but still lost his production company. Kevin Spacey hasn’t been charged, but lost his show. Roseanne wasn’t even accused of a crime, and got her show cancelled.

      Innocent until proven guilty is the standard used when the state may take away someone’s freedom. It isn’t necessarily the standard for an employer to continue employing someone, particularly where the business is high profile and extremely sensitive to image issues. (like entertainment and pro sports).

      the CFLPA should spend more of their time on player safety and CTE, and less time tilting at this particular windmill.

    • Most pro contracts have morality clauses as well

    • brian johnson // August 8, 2018 at 6:26 pm //

      And there could be None consent.
      You are caught robbing a bank!! Haven’t gone to court as your appearance date is not set so your not guilt for the moment. What would the NHL, NFL,CFL do. REVIEW facts with their lawyers and project the final out come!!
      As a positive league, leading as an example you would get rid of them ASAP.
      Johnny did his case in court and paid his dues to society. Totally different cases.
      Bought players mentioned could do jail time. If they win, maybe reinstated at that time. Very SIMPLE!

    • People continually conflate the issues of employment and criminal charges. They are fundamentally not the same. An employer should never wait for the outcome of criminal charges before investigating potential misconduct by an employee.

      Police/Crown charge individuals based on the likelihood of conviction on the “reasonable doubt” standard. An employer has just cause to impose discipline/terminate an employee should their misconduct be proven on the “balance of probabilities” standard, which is lower and different. If the misconduct is more likely to have occurred than not, then there is just cause for discipline. The assessment of discipline, in a unionized setting, has specific considerations but in cases like these where the misconduct is offensive to the general public and damages the reputation of the employer, termination is usually defensible.

      NONE of that employment analysis has anything to do with criminal charges. Nothing at all.

    • Diehardticat // August 8, 2018 at 9:58 pm //

      You think your policy is reality or just a nice slogan? As a teacher, your policy does not apply to my profession nor should it to public figures

  3. Riding the Horse // August 8, 2018 at 5:54 pm //

    We know it’s the riders being looked into. They have cut a few under these circumstances. Big lawsuits coming. Likely a huge distraction for Chris Jones.
    We know Calgary is clean

    • Who is “we” cheesewheel ? You and the voices in your head ?

    • thats a good joke lol calgary is the dirtiest

    • Ridersrule // August 8, 2018 at 8:34 pm //

      Your comments are solely based on the flavour of the month . Had the riders not cut messam you would have been all over the riders and since they cut him you think they are wrong . You are silly petty man . I’m going guess you are single and have never had a serious gf or bf , just trying to remain pc here.

    • Bleeding Green // August 8, 2018 at 10:04 pm //

      Hahahaha you’re such a dipshit.

    • Bleeding Green // August 8, 2018 at 10:59 pm //

      When they finally find Bo’s crack, Calgary won’t be so clean.

    • Take a look at what Quint had to say in the post above yours…and then you just might have an idea as to how inferior your own brainless pronouncement on this issue is–perhaps this might make you reflect just a little the next time you think you should inflict yourself on the general public.

      • Bleeding Green // August 8, 2018 at 11:47 pm //

        Heathers knows whats up. Unfortunately, it’s a lost cause. Just another opportunity for this sociopath to take his pot shots at the Riders, and turn this into a Rider thread. “inflict yourself on the general public.” Spot on.

  4. D_Winnipeg // August 8, 2018 at 5:57 pm //

    Well said, The Paw. A different threshold should and does exist for notable athletes, entertainers, and politicians, just to name a few.

  5. Tension between the CFL and the CFLPA, could not comeat a worse time. This will only harm the CBA negotiations that will soon start.

    • Manyhandles lift the horses tail and stick your head up it’s butt so we don’t have to listen to you!!!

    • Bomb Away // August 8, 2018 at 11:07 pm //

      What would be wrong with suspending the player until the issue is settled in court. Guilty.. you’re toast, innocent you’re back on the team. The Crown usually has a case it feels it can win so there is some substance to the charge. Not doing anything when charges are laid is not an option but what happened to Messam is an over-reach. Civil rights are supposed to protect one.

      • Bleeding Green // August 8, 2018 at 11:50 pm //

        Unfortunately, in many cases, the allegation (even if completely baseless) is enough to tarnish someone and ruin their career opportunities. Suppose Jerome Messam is found not guilty after a trial or whatever transpires, I would bet he is done in the CFL. If he is indeed innocent as he claims, that’s extremely unfortunate. One of the best Canadian backs to suit up.

  6. Yet Trump still holds his job.

    Randy Ambrosie is a toothless leader. Who picks these guys?

    • Toothless based on what?

    • Bleeding Green // August 8, 2018 at 11:55 pm //

      Don’t bring the stupidity of the American electorate into these threads. That shouldn’t even apply here. When you have the money, you can bully your way in and out of any position. Exhibit A: Jeffery Epstein.

  7. Dave Smith // August 8, 2018 at 6:19 pm //

    Johnny admitted his actions, did everything asked of him, and was never convicted of any crime. But of a difference. Don’t believe these guys should be considered guilty without due process

    • brian johnson // August 8, 2018 at 6:32 pm //

      CFL has never once said these guys are guilty.
      No one has. Accusers ask police to lay chargers.
      Police review events and make charges IF there is a good probability of conviction.

  8. Didn’t Johnny forcibly abduct his girlfriend and beat her untill she was deaf in one ear? Ambrosie is willfully blind. When he publicly said that he was pulling for him to be approved by approved to join the league, he lost credibility and my respect.

    • The difference is JM was cleared of his case for assault. Openly acknowledges he made mistakes. A franchise in the CFL asked if he could be signed and he was granted a second chance. The two former players listed are in court and should be off any roster in till its resolved.

  9. Komodo Dragon // August 8, 2018 at 6:56 pm //

    So many Judges on here. No wonder the younger male generation is so Fu**ed up. Growing up with Social media has melted your brains.
    Just wait until some woman dosent like you and makes serious allegations towards you. Simply because she knows that if she accuses you of a serious act you will lose everything as youve known it.
    Sure some guys are as guilty as sins. What about the ones that are not guilty.

  10. Don’t leave the house // August 8, 2018 at 10:02 pm //

    In today’s day and age it doesn’t even need a criminal charge laid by police to ruin someone, all it takes is an allegation with absolutely zero proof or evidence and trial by social media and you’re finished. The pendulum may swing back one day but it will take years and many innocent people will be hurt along the way. The guilty ones deserve it, the innocent ones don’t.

    If you’re smart you won’t leave your house or open your mouth to anyone. All it takes is for someone to change their mind after the fact or flat out fabricate.

    Like I said, the guilty ones deserve it, the innocent do not and one day the lack of proof or evidence will come back to bite organizations who have ruined people, likely by litigation and financial penalties of some sort.

    Put your helmets on.

    • Truth

    • Tiger man // August 10, 2018 at 8:12 am //

      Leagues have investigative teams that check into these allegations before they make such decisions. They can be sued if they wrongfully dismiss someone.

      Meantime, these players know they are public figures and targets for those unscrupulous. They need to be aware and smarter about their off field activities.

      No one should be more diligent about your safety and security than you.

  11. Very well said paw. Now spread your wisdom to horsey

  12. Rider4 life // August 9, 2018 at 12:15 am //

    Horses ass with messam it happened in Calgary not Regina as he was playing for Calgary why you blame jones as we never new nothing about this till it come out . Your such a goddam loser it’s got nothing to do with jones or the riders you goddam weasel got hibernate in your bedroom.

    • Riding the Horse // August 9, 2018 at 12:55 am //

      It happened in Calgary??? How is that fact relevant to this story??
      I think you are missing the point Rider4 life

      We’re the Stamps and the Stamps stand tall

      • Ridersrule // August 9, 2018 at 1:13 am //

        We’re the stamps? So huff did take you on as the little special needs boy , good for you . Did they give you a little jersey with mr red stitched on the back ?

        • Riding the Horse // August 9, 2018 at 1:56 am //

          We’re the 7-0 Stamps and we stand tall.
          It just kiiiiills you, doesn’t it?

    • He should’ve never been allowed to play on either team since the investigation started.

  13. Pop Gun Offence // August 9, 2018 at 12:37 am //

    I am not disputing that the court of public opinion has become executioner far too quickly. However, once charges are laid, it is no longer the court of public opinion, and the CFL has the responsibility to separate themselves from those charged. If the trials find them not guilty, I don’t believe they should have grounds to continue to ban then from contracts. The case of Johnny Manziel however is different. Yes, he complied to court orders, but there is very little dispute that he did in fact engage in physical violence towards a woman, a message the CFL has been quick to decry. If he was a Teague Sherman type name, I don’t believe they would allow him to be signed based on prior history. Howeve, because he does put bums in seats, I think Johnny Football has been given a much more lenient deal by the CFL. I think it undermines this whole position, which is not something to applaud. Can people learn from their mistakes and take responsibility and become better people? Absolutely! But I think the CFL will have to look at their consistency and be clear about that message with all players, not just the ones with a recognizable jersey.

  14. Area 51 = Asshat8

  15. If they are suspected felons then boot them out…what’s the problem? Oh yeah, I forgot, the way things are going there may not be enough players to form a league.

  16. Tiger man // August 9, 2018 at 1:28 pm //

    Osuna was suspended by MLB before his trial. They did their own checking and handed down a very large suspension. They must have found something serious. And, as good as this pitcher is, the Jays wanted to part ways.

    The CFL makkets to families and children. They can’t have these people front and centre on their TV broadcasts with these charges pending.

    It’s a bad image, and bad for business.

  17. Edward Leslie // August 9, 2018 at 3:31 pm //

    I’m sure that we can all agree that the NFL is a very scummy league with a scummy history.
    The CFL has unfortunately copied some bad NFL ideas like timeouts, challenges, over emphasis on combines, closed practices and employing massive coaching staffs. We don’t need to become a league full of criminals too.
    In the past these rogue scumbags usually were Americans. It’s disappointing that good Canadian players like Messam and Sherman have gone off the rails and disgraced themselves, their teams and the CFL.
    I say BAN THEM.

Comments are closed.