|Eskimos assistant head coach Kit Lathrop was the first on the scene of a May 9 ceiling collapse in the steam room at Commonwealth Stadium. (David Bloom/QMI Agency)
EDMONTON - The players on the gridiron aren’t the only heroes in the CFL.
Eskimos assistant head coach Kit Lathrop was acknowledged at a team luncheon with league commissioner Mark Cohon on Thursday — one day after trying to help a construction worker who was injured when the roof of the players steam room collapsed.
“He was literally pinned under the material of the ceiling,” Eskimos president Len Rhodes said. “Luckily, he’s in the hospital right now under observation and it looks like there will be a good news story to this.”
Prior to the arrival of emergency responders, who were on scene in minutes, Lathrop was the first one to rush to the man’s aid.
“He literally tried to put his shoulders under the weight of the material to lift it,” Rhodes said. “He wasn’t able to do so but he attended to the person first-hand.
“I want to say thank you so much, Kit, for what you did. You are a hero.”
ROSS CLOSE: The Eskimos are close to signing former UFL MVP Cory Ross.
The University of Nebraska running back became the first Cornhuskers player to make the top-10 in both rushing yards (2,743) and receptions (71).
The five-foot-six 201-pound Denver native played for the Baltimore Ravens in 2006 and ’07, before spending the 2010 season with the UFL’s Sacramento Mountain Lions.
“We’ve basically got a verbal agreement,” said Eskimos GM Eric Tillman, adding no contract has been signed. “He’s a very good player.
“Hugh (Charles) is going to be the lead back. Everybody’s going to come in and compete with him.”
The Eskimos are looking to replace 2011 CFL most outstanding Canadian Jerome Messam, who has signed with the Miami Dolphins.
INGLIS OUT: Eskimos long-snapper Taylor Inglis announced his retirement Thursday after seven seasons in the CFL.
The six-foot-three, 253-pound Edmonton Wildcats product won a Grey Cup ring with the Eskimos in his rookie season in 2005.
He spent the 2010 season with the Winnipeg Blue Bombers before returning to Edmonton to play his last season out with his home team.
“A great ambassador for our team, grew up in this area,” said Tillman. “He’s taken a job with the Edmonton International Airports, a great business opportunity for him.
“We thank him for his contributions to this club.”
Look for 2012 draft pick and Sherwood Park native Ryan King to be the Eskimos heir apparent long-snapper.