October 29, 2018 8:37 pm
Updated: October 29, 2018 8:38 pm

CFL dropped the ball handling hit on Riders QB Zach Collaros: commissioner

Saskatchewan Roughriders quarterback Zach Collaros looks downfield for a receiver during first half CFL action at Mosaic Stadium in Regina on Saturday, Oct. 27, 2018.

Mark Taylor / The Canadian Press
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Commissioner Randy Ambrosie admitted Monday the CFL dropped the ball regarding how it handled defensive lineman Odell Willis’s helmet-to-helmet hit on quarterback Zach Collaros on Saturday.

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Willis delivered the hit on Collaros in the first quarter of the Saskatchewan Roughriders‘ 35-16 win over the B.C. Lions. There was no flag thrown on the play, and only after the Riders challenged was an unnecessary roughness penalty called.

READ MORE: Defence and special teams carry Roughriders past Lions

What’s more, Collaros, who has a history of concussions, was allowed to remain in the game despite twice having to squat down to compose himself. He left later for precautionary reasons and didn’t return.

The CFL admitted in a statement released over the weekend that Willis should’ve been flagged for the hit and the Riders shouldn’t have had to use a challenge. It also added its injury spotter should’ve not allowed Collaros to remain in the contest and Willis could face league discipline as a result of the incident.

READ MORE: Ottawa Redblacks sweep Tiger-Cats to clinch first place in CFL’s East Division

Ambrosie reiterated all of those points Monday, saying the league’s response to the hit “was clearly inadequate.”

“I am committed to removing reckless and dangerous play from our game,” he said. “The fact that we did not respond adequately is not acceptable to me.

“I have made that very clear to our personnel today. We are reviewing our processes, protocols and rules to ensure this chain of events is not repeated.”

© 2018 The Canadian Press

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