Realty One

Wednesday, November 30, 2016


It's been days since CFL Commissioner Jeffrey Orridge told reporters at his annual State of the League address at Grey Cup that "there's no conclusive evidence at this point" of a link between football and CTE (the degenerative brain disease caused by head trauma).

In response to a reporter's question Friday in Toronto, Orridge said that's the CFL's stance on the matter.

That incensed Saskatchewan Roughriders Hall of Famer Scott Schultz (2001-2009) who took to the airwaves on 620 CKRM's SportsCage to call out Orridge for his comments.

The former defensive tackle - who also spent time in the NFL with the Steelers and Chargers - said he'd never sue the CFL for the post-career symptoms he's currently suffering, but he would at least like an admission by the CFL.

"All of the guys of my ilk - that I respect - are the same way; we knew what we were in for," Schultz stated.  "I wouldn't change a thing.  But as a responsible parent, I'll tell you right now, I'm not letting my son play football the way things are currently, for a whole host of reasons."

I've gone on record saying I have no problems with Orridge's comment because it aligns with similar remarks by NHL Commissioner Gary Bettman.  Furthermore, an admission by the CFL could open the door for more lawsuits brought against the league, similar to the one presented by Arland Bruce III last spring.  Because of that suit Orridge offered a general "no comment" on the situation but when pressed, he remarked, "Last I heard, it's still a subject of debate in the medical and scientific community."

There could also be a lineup of ex-CFL'ers with their hand out simply because they're broke.

"I agree .. there are certain former football players who are down on their luck and looking to make a buck off of this.  Agreed.  It's very fortuitous for them," Schultz admitted.  "But that doesn't change the facts, Mr. Orridge.  There are links between the two.

"In 250 cases of donated brains, 200 found CTE!  There is a linkage between them! The NFL admits there's a link.  They've been forced to do this because of litigation but now they're doing all the things they can to be pro-active.

"Why does Orridge think in the CFL right now there's a Concussion Protocol when a guy gets smacked in the head or his head gets rattled off the turf?  Five years ago you'd go right back into the game.  They're scared of what's going to happen with concussions and head injuries and they're treating players with kid gloves.  It's C.Y.A. - Cover Your Ass.  That proves they're worried about linkage to head injuries."

To conclude the interview, I asked Schultz if this interview opportunity was satisfactory just to get his concerns off his chest.

"The only thing that would make me more happy is for Orridge to respectfully bow out or be removed from his position," Schultz concluded. " I think the guy, in all facets, hasn't been good for the CFL."


Anonymous said...

Hear ! Hear ! Mr. Chris Schultz.

Orridge gotta go !
Orridge gotta go !
Orridge gotta go !
Orridge gotta go !

Anonymous said...

Sorry but kind of like farting in the prairie wind by Shultz on this one. The Commmish is just spouting the party line laid down by the legal minds hired by the CFL brass due to the court matter.

Anonymous said...

He got canned by CBC so the CFL hired him.
People of Orridge's ilk always land on their feet.
He'll get gassed but with about a million dollar severance fee and then land a job on the board of directors for General Motors or something similar.

Victor Isted said...

I just wanted to add my 2 cents. First of all I have nothing but respect for Mr Schultz and his opinion and as a player. On the commissioner I think he hit the nail right on the head. Time for him to go.

On the concussion issue. Why are the players only sueing the CFL & NFL? Why aren't they sueing there parent for actually letting them play the game in the first place. Why aren't they sueing every team they played on & every league they played in. How about sueing every athletic trainer and doctor they had since they started playing. How about sueing every coach they ever had. How about sueing themselves since they knew what they were getting into and still decided to play. As stated by Mr Schultz.

Why I say this. You can't say when there issues actual started for sure. Was it the first hit to the head or the last hit to the head.

I'm not trying to make light of the issue. But when you see Armand Bruce fighting with traiming staff to get his helmet back so he can get back into the game you have to wonder how much of the responsibility has to rest on his own sholders. You see the results ever week on the CFL panel on TSN with Matt Dunigan and to many hits to the head.

In the end the players need to be helped. Sometimes even protected from themselves. So my question is were do you start to lay blame.

Anonymous said...

Amazing hoe everyone. especially the media, thinks they can run the cfl better

John Knight said...

Victor, you couldn't be more correct. Your post is right on

Anonymous said...

When all these former players (CFL and NFL) say they will never let their own children play football, this is bad news for the sport. There's also been at least 5 NFL players retire in their mid-20's this past year, citing their health as more important than the millions.

Anonymous said...

Hey Dummy, it's Scott Schultz.

Anonymous said...

Hey Victor when you play sports at a level of competition then your adrenaline takes over from time to time but when you mention he was fighting for his helmet to get back in the game after a his head hit...maybe get your head smacked like that and see how clear your thoughts and decision making are soon after, very easy to speak about it uninformed and on our side but I will take Cornish for instant at the awards show in B.C a couple years ago, remembered two of his front line doing his speech...was trying very hard to remember there names and ended up just saying thanks to his front five. Cornish is a smart individual by the way. Sure they play the game and should understand the situation but there should be protocols to stop them from playing under symptoms by medical staff. Collaros already showing signs, struggles in his interviews...looks like a deer in the head lights, really sad to see.

Anonymous said...

A great Canadian pastime, criticizing the CFL but not offering any real options.

Anonymous said...

Orridge should have just said no comment and moved on. The issue is his comments about the science being inconclusive were believed by no one, had he said no comment and moved on, this is a non story. Instead he opened his mouth and created a shitstorm

His biggest problems since coming into office have been his public comments, he needs someone to teach him how and what to say in front of the camera.

I'm no Dr, but I think the concussion-long term brain injuries link is real. Pretending that there is no link just makes Orridge seem like he's either naive or lying.

Anonymous said...

Everyone should read the book - League of Denial. It is more detailed than the Concussion movie and it shows that science has proven the link CTE. Rod you need to read it as it seems you don't think there is a link to head juries and CTE.
I agree with Scott not letting his son play football.

Football will have to change or in 10 years there will be no football. Players are bigger, faster and stronger and players are getting hurt more often.
Other sports have CTE issues as well and need to wake up before their sports are sued

Darcy said...

what has the cfl done tt protect players from head shoots if your not a QB, answer nothing, every game there are at least 2 or more headshots with no calls, want to stop headshots, need a flag worth more than 15 yards and the player ejected from the game, then the message will get to the players

Anonymous said...

Not a very good comment by Orridge...he should have a little more respect for the players of his league that make us fans love this league, pretty easy to open his mouth when he is in a suit and tie sitting in his office. Orridge go put the pads on and let's see you feel with a guy like Chick,Sewell,Willis, or Hughes hitting you full tilt...see how fast you talk about this next time.

Anonymous said...

Victor, John, and any one else who takes the health of these players seriously should check out a small but well written book called "Against Football: One Fan's Reluctant Manifesto", by Steve Almond. It will make you question much about this sport, and how/why the athletes come to where they are, concussion issues on of the many topics addressed within. The book didn't make me stop paying attention to football since reading it, but I cringed even more whenever ANY player got hit ridiculously hard and had a difficult time getting up. Check it out. Oh, and good for Scott Schultz and his comments - pretty bold move in my opinion.


Anonymous said...

Flag football is the way to go for the youngsters.

Anonymous said...

Tackle football will be a thing of the past in 20 years, same with contact hockey it's pretty much there now.

Anonymous said...

Orridge needs to sit down with former "all world football superstar player Jon Cornish" and have a long honest discussion to this CTE subject. He can't be that stupid dismissive with his opinion, most highly probable just garded towing the line to his job and the league... not good.

Anonymous said...

Hey Schultz, football is also hard on the knees. Mouthing off is also hard on your reputation. Just giving you a heads up so you don't sue someone.

w said...

Who's Orridge?