Hot-heads irk Andrus

TERRY KOSHAN, SUN MEDIA

, Last Updated: 2:02 PM ET

Adriano Belli's temper has Argonauts head coach Bart Andrus seeing red.

A controlled, but clearly angry, Andrus said after a 46-36 loss yesterday to the Saskatchewan Roughriders that if Belli can't get in line, he can look for another job.

"If he wants to be a WWE wrestler, then he can go do that, but he is not going to do on my football team," Andrus said as he gave his chewing gum an intense workover.

"I don't get upset very often, but it upsets me when guys act like they did. He is either going to conform or he is not going to be here."

When told of Andrus' WWE comparison, Belli refused comment.

But the 6-foot-5, 295-pound Toronto native, who has been ejected from games in each of the past two seasons, agreed that he has to get a grip on his emotions.

"It's a fine line in football," Belli said. "I'm going to keep getting after the quarterback, but (Andrus) is absolutely right. I have to keep my composure."

Belli, called the "heart and soul" of the Argos defensive line by Andrus during training camp, got under his coach's skin in the first quarter when he head-butted the Roughriders' Matt O'Meara and received a 15-yard penalty for unnecessary roughness, a sequence that effectively extinguished a 10-0 Argos lead.

By the end of the first half, Belli had taken four penalties for 44 yards.

Belli, afterward, was nursing a badly bruised lower left leg,, but he would not identify the culprit who stepped on it.

For someone who has preached discipline and professionalism, Andrus hasn't yet got through the hard skulls of all of his players. Receiver Arland Bruce made a mockery of the game with a silly homage to Michael Jackson after a touchdown last week and then there were yesterday's penalty shenanigans.

But Andrus thinks his words are finding receptive ears.

"(Overall), I think they think I am pretty serious,'' he said.

"I feel pretty strongly they are getting the message."

TERRY.KOSHAN@SUNMEDIA.CA


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