Lions defensive lineman Khalif Mitchell has been fined an undisclosed amount by the CFL for unacceptable twitter comments on Wednesday morning.
Mitchell apologized publicly after practice on Wednesday, saying he didn’t realize the terms he’d written were offensive.
The Lions decided Wednesday afternoon that Mitchell will not play Friday against the Eskimos, despite original plans to have him in the starting lineup.
Lions President Dennis Skulsky released the following statement:
“On behalf of the BC Lions Football Club, I am announcing today that Khalif Mitchell will not be in the lineup for Friday’s game versus the Edmonton Eskimos. While Khalif has missed the previous three games due to injury and was slated to return this week, a joint decision has been made between VP of football operations Wally Buono, head coach Mike Benevides and I to remove him from the starting lineup.
“This decision is a response to Khalif’s inappropriate comments made on his Twitter feed this morning and despite his public expression of remorse, we believe this is the best course of action for our organization at this time.
“Let me state very clearly on behalf of our entire organization that Khalif’s message was completely inappropriate and we apologize to anyone who was offended by it. The BC Lions Football Club, our players, coaches and staff hold ourselves to the highest standard and we are proud to represent our culturally diverse community.
“Moving forward, we will seek to better educate Khalif and all of our players while reinforcing the importance to our entire organization of understanding and respecting all cultures.”
Skulsky and head coach Mike Benevides both joined TEAM1040 on Wednesday, while Wally Buono spoke after practice. Hear those comments here, along with Khalif’s apology.
The CFL’s Social Media Policy is as follows:
“If a player, team employee or league employee uses social media (which includes retweeting or reposting someone else’s comment(s) to their own social media account) in a manner that may bring the CFL into disrepute, including posts that condone harassment, discrimination or violence, are obscene or sexually explicit, or divulge proprietary information or disparage the league, teams, officials, players, employees or fans, they will be subject to discipline from the Commissioner’s Office. ”