Bring Back Tom Higgins

As Head of CFL Officiating.

Glen Johnson has plain and simply been a detriment to the CFL. With him came an over emphasis on calls being determined by a replay official. And when a ruling has to be made, because of the inconsistency, no one has a clue which way it will go.

And you have to hold your breadth when your team makes a great defensive play because it might be challenged for illegal contact on a receiver far away from the play.

In the meantime officiating on the field has gone completely downhill. No consistency on pass interference, obvious infractions are not called, yet ticky tack ones are.

A perfect example of all this was the Argos/Bombers game tonight. And you have a poor lady in Winnipeg out $1 million because of, to quote Marv Levy, some “over officious jerk.”

The referee was correct in the call during the kickoff return. Penalty is 100% because Llevi Noel made a dumb mistake. He clearly pushed Mike Miller from behind when there was no need. Can't reward stupidity just so the game looks good on the highlight reel and a fan wins the Grand Prize.

For what it's worth, believe the "infaction" took place well behind the runner. Would have never had a chance at tackling the returner.

Ive been a CFL fan since I was 7 years old - a long time ago - and will always be one, its kind of in my DNA. But the officiating has certainly become problematic since Glen Johnson took over.

He makes the rounds in the off-season with all kinds of self-righteous declarations, yet once the season starts things go from bad to worse.

Arash sums things up:

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That's the main reason I pick and choose the CFL games I watch. There always seems to be three teams on the field - your team, the opposing team, and the zebras!

You can never get too excited about a great play - it may well be called back! Bush!

The Bomber cuts in front of Argo to cause contact, not in any way related to trying to tackle the long-gone returner. And the "contact" was minimal; the Bomber almost dove to get in front.

The arm/hand appeared to apply no pressure and even if the Argo had not instinctively raised his arm there would have been a "block from behind", albeit caused by the Bomber.

From what TSN guys said, players are coached to do this;it should be a diving penalty rather than blocking form behind.

"Instinctively raised his arm"??? That's a stretch.

The way I see it, Llevi Noel consciously raised his arm as he is running toward Miller. Miller immediately falls down. There is nobody else to blame other than Noel for making it so easy for the officials to call a penalty.

Although I never agree with him, Jack Todd seems to agree with my suggestion. Though in my case I was just being my usual sarcastic self.

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It may be a sign of hell freezing over that I am defending an Argo (I hate all things Toronto, not the people but the teams, networks, etc), but I respectfully disagree. What I saw was that the Argo angled his way in front of the Bomber and if the arm hadn't gone up there would have been contact a split-second later as there was no way the Argo could stop or avoid him. VERY smart football by the Bomber but exposed a weakness in the CFL rules.

Post-play the officials should be able to review whether a penalty had anything to do with the "success" of the return (punt/kickoff/fumble/interception) and if not apply it to the next play (or kickoff after a touchdown); in fact, give the other team the choice of moving the ball back 10 yards (assuming a 10 yrd penalty) or leaving it where the return ended but making it 1st and 20 to make it more challenging for the offence.

End result after all the complaining is: blatant push-in-the-back penalty last night not being called.