Glen Suitor fires off at ‘petty’ team officials ‘spreading conspiracy theories’ about CFL finances

Photo courtesy: TSN

Glen Suitor has had enough of the rumours and hearsay.

The former CFL all-star and veteran TSN colour commentator was animated on The SportsCage, taking aim at those inside the league who he believes are undermining it’s credibility through pot-shots and unfounded gossip.

“It’s fodder for us, it’s fodder for talk radio. You can throw it on Twitter and get everybody fired up, but there is a bigger picture here,” Suitor told host Derek Taylor.

The rant was an impassioned response to an appearance by Suitor’s TSN colleague Matthew Scianitti on Edmonton radio in which the reporter said many teams were going to bend the rules when it came to the CFL’s internal direction to spend to the salary cap minimum.

“Certainly some teams are going to bend it a bit,” Scianitti said in regards to sentiment across the league. “I can tell you that there are personnel staff members across the league who are starting to crunch the numbers of other teams and sending me texts saying I don’t know how so-and-so is thinking that he can go ahead and get all this even under the salary cap ceiling.”

Suitor had harsh words for those team personnel voicing their private speculation and negativity to members of the media.

“In order to prosper into the future, this new business model has to be part of the conversation and has to be acted on, not just talked about. That will require trust like never before between the CFL Players’ Association and the league,” he said forcibly.

“What happened was the petty whining of some team official, representative, agent or whoever it was about another team’s finances and what that does is shatter the foundation of what is trying to be built.”

Some have questioned the ethics and legality of the CFL’s suggestion to teams to spend only to the salary cap floor and cut player salaries, with one reporter going so far as to call it an act of “blatant collusion.” Suitor believes those inside and outside the league voicing their complaints don’t fully grasp the stakes.

“Here’s the big picture, and I’m going to be plain about this, football in our country is trying to survive an unprecedented crisis. And I mean football in our country, not just the CFL but also every trickle down league and organization after the top,” he continued.

“I believe to my core that we will get up off the mat and we are going to play football in 2021. I believe that is going to happen, but we are right now trying to survive an unprecedented crisis.”

According to Suitor, CFL commissioner Randy Ambrosie is engaged in regular discussions with the CFLPA, which he describes as “excellent.” Amendments to the CBA will be needed before play can begin in 2021 and Suitor believes negative talk in the media could disrupt any progress.

“Coaches, players, all of us who love this game like we do, it’s time to unite because the game depends on it. Thousands of jobs, not just players and coaches, depend on it,” Suitor begged.

“Let’s do a long-term deal the players are happy with and the teams are happy with. This other stuff, this petty breaking down of the foundation of trust, is not helping. Right now, we have to survive this crisis together and keep this great game alive.”

Earlier in the appearance, Suitor had defended Riders’ GM Jeremy O’Day for his release of future Hall of Fame defensive end Charleston Hughes and criticized Hughes for some of his comments following the split.

His message to those spreading animosity in the league was simple and clear.

“Any team official or league representative that is starting to spread conspiracy theories, that has got to stop. Any player or agent that is taking shots on the way out at their former team, that has got to stop,” Suitor emphasized. “Let’s be professional.”