Riders head coach Craig Dickenson wants immediate ejections for dangerous tackles

Photo courtesy: Justin Dunk

Riders head coach Craig Dickenson is becoming a media stud.

Saskatchewan’s bench boss has been open and honest since taking over the role in the prairies. Dickenson let the people know how he really felt about the lengthy weight for a final ruling on Simoni Lawrence’s two-game suspension for his head shot on Zach Collaros.

“I actually thought it took just the right amount of time,” Dickenson said with a laugh.

Over a month after the incident occurred an arbitrator rendered a verdict. Lawrence had his appeal hearing Tuesday, July 9, which lasted nearly 12 hours according to Hamilton’s outspoken defender. He filed a grievance for the two-game ban given out by commissioner Randy Ambrosie for the dangerous tackle Week 1, which took place June 13.

“I think that was a just decision, I’m glad the arbitrator upheld it. I think that’ll be a strong message for other players to make sure and play within the rules and don’t take those shots on guys,” Dickenson said.

“I think probably in hindsight they wish they had ejected him, but it’s hard, football a lot of things happen in a short amount of time and a lot of bang-bang plays and I think they just didn’t se it quite as clearly when they reviewed it.”

Even though Lawrence won’t play against the Riders in Week 8, Thursday, August 1, Dickenson feels an immediate ejection during the game would be more impactful for deterring hits to the head.

“It’d been nice to see him ejected from the game, that would’ve really helped because now they’re short a guy. But now that they know he’s being suspended, they’ll have another player up that’s probably younger and probably a guy they’re looking to play eventually anyways,” Dickenson said.

“I don’t think it hurts Hamilton all that much, it certainly will hurt Simoni and I know he feels bad about it. I think it’ll send a message to other players. But whether it hurts Hamilton a lot? Nah. They’ll be strong regardless.”