Chilliwack’s Matt McConnell a CFL free agent after being cut loose by BC Lions

The hard-hitting defensive back was trying to make the Leos roster despite not playing since 2017

Seen here taking down a Vancouver Island Raider during the 2013 BC Football Conference season, Chilliwack’s Matt McConnell (No. 20 in brown) tried to make the roster of the Canadian Football League’s BC Lions, but was cut on Monday, July 26, 2021. (Black Press file photo)

Seen here taking down a Vancouver Island Raider during the 2013 BC Football Conference season, Chilliwack’s Matt McConnell (No. 20 in brown) tried to make the roster of the Canadian Football League’s BC Lions, but was cut on Monday, July 26, 2021. (Black Press file photo)

Matt McConnell may yet surface on the roster of a Canadian Football League team, but his dreams of playing pro football took a hit Monday July 26 when he was released by the BC Lions.

The Chilliwack product was trying to catch on at safety, but faced long odds.

McConnell came into training camp in Kamloops having not played football in nearly four years. The former Chilliwack Giant who went on to star with the BC Football Conference’s Okanagan Sun was suspended for an anti-doping violation while playing U-Sports football at Saint Mary’s University.

His last game was in November of 2017. The two-year ban sidelined him in 2018 and 2019 and COVID wiped out 2020.

McConnell had attended prospects camps previously with the Lions, who were intrigued by his size (six-foot-three and 200 pounds) and physicality.

But he didn’t do enough in camp to stand out and is now a free agent.

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