Pinball to refs: Mind Als' creativity

PERRY LEFKO -- Toronto Sun

, Last Updated: 8:22 AM ET

Argonauts head coach Pinball Clemons won't dare call his Montreal counterpart Don Matthews a cheater, but he did call him out yesterday. Well, he kind of did.

Clemons offered an interesting adjective for the Als and their tendency in the past to throw off the Argos by barking out Toronto's snap count to throw off its timing. It's an illegal practice.

When asked if this is unique to Matthews, Clemons said with a laugh: "I'm not calling him a cheater."

When asked if creative is a better description, Clemons laughed and said: "You can call it what you want. It's not cheating doing something illegal. It's being creative."

The Argos travel to Montreal to play the Als tomorrow at Olympic Stadium in a game which will have important ramifications for first place in the East Division.

The game is expected to draw a sellout crowd of about 60,000, whose collective noise can make it virtually impossible for the Argos to hear the cadence of their quarterback.

It doesn't help matters if Alouettes defensive players are barking out the count.

While refusing to call out Matthews, Clemons said he would talk to the officials before the game to notify them of the Als' verbal misdemeanours in the past. But Clemons also said the officials have a tough job.

"They do what they can, but if they can't hear it, they can't hear it," Clemons said. "We try to put the onus on ourselves rather than on them. We try to simplify the way we do things and a lot of times we go without a snap count to try to alleviate that."


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