|Riders Coach & GM Chris Jones speaks with reporters on Friday at the U of S|
And it doesn't look like the former Oklahoma Sooners star will be coming any time soon.
St. John, a native of Ajax, Ont., who was selected first overall by Saskatchewan in last month's CFL draft, has reportedly asked to be traded by the Riders as the two sides have hit a snag in contract talks.
Chris Jones, the Riders head coach/GM, refused to discuss St. John's situation Friday.
"We're not talking about St. John,'' he said. "We're talking about the people that are here.''
Saskatchewan reportedly offered St. John a two-year deal that would pay him $52,000 in his first season and $53,000 in 2017. That was after Jonathan Hardaway, St. John's agent, is said to have asked for a three-year deal totalling $400,000. That would make him the highest-paid CFL draft pick in history.
Last year centre Alex Mateas - who went first overall last year to Ottawa - and guard Sukh Chungh - who was drafted second by Winnipeg - reportedly signed deals that included base salaries of approximately $80,000 along with bonuses. The Roughriders are said to have initially offered St. John a contract in the same neighbourhood as last year's top picks.
The six-foot-six, 300 pound St. John spent two seasons with the Sooners.
"We're not worried about that," Rider quarterback Darian Durant said when asked about the squabble. "That's the business side of things. Each and every guy in that locker room has been through the business side of football. That's not our concern.
"We have to make sure we're ready to play. We have a preseason game in eight days so our focus is getting better each and everyday in practice. If he wants to be here, he'll be here."
(With files from Canadian Press)