Rooke off to T.O.

DAN TOTH -- Calgary Sun

, Last Updated: 9:00 AM ET

Stampeders president Ron Rooke is heading to Toronto today to lobby the CFL to "make it right."

Rooke expects to meet with CFL commissioner Tom Wright and VP of football operations Ed Chalupka to officially file a protest, hoping to overturn Friday night's controversial loss to the B.C. Lions.

"I had conversations today with Mr. Chalupka and Tom Wright regarding the missed call," Rooke said. "I'm flying out (this) morning with the protest letter and the cheque and the videotape and we'll take it from there."

Replays of the Stamps-Lions finish show Calgary executing an onside open-field kick on the final play of the game, with Sulecio Sanford apparently scoring the winning touchdown. But the officiating crew, headed by ref Jake Ireland, called Sanford for no-yards, wiping out the TD and giving the Lions a 19-17 win.

The Stamps' protest, should the club succeed in having the outcome overturned, would be precedent setting. Although changing the final score wouldn't affect the upcoming playoffs -- the Lions will finish first in the West and the Stamps last, out of post-season contention for the third straight year -- the 4-13 Calgary squad could use the moral victory.

"Once we saw the tape, our players knew, everybody on the sidelines knew," Rooke said."(Secondary coach) Mike Roach was standing right there and once we saw the tape ... they have a chance to make it right."

In addition to protesting the missed call, Rooke and the Stamps are continuing to investigate claims one official directed a racial slur toward receiver Nik Lewis.

"We're really not commenting on the Nik Lewis thing," Rooke said.

"We have to do some more investigation into that. We don't know who said it, so until we find out exactly which official said it, then we'll proceed."

CFL director of officiating George Black on Saturday said he would not have an opportunity to review game film of the controversial call until late today or early tomorrow.

Yesterday's TSN broadcast of the Edmonton-Winnipeg game made mention of the controversy during the pre-game show, including footage of the missed call.

"What I took away from the pre-game show was, they showed the game tape and then they came back and (host) Dave Randorf said they'd spoken to George Black and he hadn't seen it yet but, 'We know he's watching so now we know he's seen it.' "

Neither the CFL, Black nor Ireland returned calls yesterday.


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