Ticats accuse Bombers of spying

The Hamilton Tiger-Cats are accusing the Blue Bombers, coached by Mike Kelly (above), of...

The Hamilton Tiger-Cats are accusing the Blue Bombers, coached by Mike Kelly (above), of “unethical” tactics in advance of their game in Hamilton, Saturday. (MARCEL CRETAIN/Sun Media)

PAUL FRIESEN, SUN MEDIA

, Last Updated: 1:28 AM ET

The Hamilton Tiger-Cats are accusing the Blue Bombers of “unethical” tactics in advance of their game in Hamilton, Saturday.

The Ticats say they caught someone spying on their practice on behalf of the Bombers yesterday, and had him thrown out.

Hamilton brass confiscated the man’s notes, revoked his press box pass for Saturday’s game and registered a complaint with the CFL.

“We have been informed of the incident and are looking into it,” CFL spokesman Jamie Dykstra told the Sun last night.

SportsNet reported that Ticats scout Danny McManus first noticed the “spy,” recognizing him as someone who’d seen in the Hamilton press box, dressed in Bomber garb, for the team’s home opener against Toronto.

The Hamilton Spectator identified him as Ron Trentini.

“It’s very unethical,” Ticats GM Bob O’Billovich told SportsNet. “It’s ridiculous for someone to do something like that. It’s a lack of integrity.”

Another report, in the Globe and Mail, says Trentini had dozens of pages of notes containing drawings of plays and formations used by the Ticats.

DOES SOME SCOUTING

Bomber director of football operations Ross Hodgkinson told the Sun that Trentini does some scouting for Winnipeg in the Toronto area, but that he was overzealous and took it upon himself to make some notes.

“I guess he thought (it was OK) because it was an open practice ... I guess that’s not deemed appropriate. This is why coaches would like closed practices.”

Hodgkinson says as soon as the Bombers found out, they apologized to the Ticats.

The Bombers have a strict policy covering video at their own practices, banning the use of video cameras in the stands, even forbidding TV crews from filming for large periods of time.

But it’s unclear what rules there are, if any, governing the taking of notes at an opposing team’s practice.

In the past, there have been controversies surrounding video, most recently an accusation against the Montreal Alouettes, then coached by Don Matthews, for trying to record signals from an opposing team’s bench during a game.

The CFL came out against such tactics, although a formal rule wasn’t put in place.


Videos

Photos