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Friday, August 21, 2015

ALOUETTES SACK HIGGINS

MONTREAL (CP) - Tom Higgins has been fired as head coach of the Montreal Alouettes and general manager Jim Popp will take over the job for the fourth time in his career.

A brief statement released Friday evening from team owner Bob Wetenhall gave no reason for the change, which came a day after the Alouettes beat the B.C. Lions 23-13 for only their second win in Vancouver since 2000.

"General Manager Jim Popp will take over the duties of head coach at this time,'' Wetenhall said. "Our management and I have full confidence in Jim, as do our players.

"We have made this change as we believe it is in the best interest of our team, and especially our fans. We all wish to express to Tom our affection and respect, as well as our appreciation for the contributions he has made to the franchise.''

Higgins, a CFL veteran who had previous head coaching stints in Calgary and Edmonton, took over the Alouettes in 2014, when the team rebounded from a 1-7 start to make the playoffs with a 9-9 record.

The club is 3-5 this season, mostly due to an anaemic offence and some costly errors at key moments of games. The Alouettes also lost both starting quarterback Jonathan Crompton and backup Dan LeFevour to injuries in the opening game of the season and have had to break in rookie pivot Rakeem Cato.

It was Wetenhall who hired Higgins and it appears it was Wetenhall who fired him. Popp wanted the job, but the owner preferred that he concentrate on his GM duties. Popp has been GM since the CFL returned to Montreal in 1996 after a 10-year hiatus.

Popp stepped in for Rod Rust for the final game of the 2001 campaign, then replaced an ailing Don Matthews for four games in 2006. He also took over from Dan Hawkins four games into the 2013 campaign.

He coached the entire 2007 season, going 8-10 in what he called a rebuilding year.

Popp's career regular-season record is 16-20-0, with a 1-4 mark in playoff games.

He is to meet with the media on Saturday morning.

27 comments:

Anonymous said...

They don’t mess around in the Allouettes organization do they?

How many HC’s have they had since moving to Montreal from Baltimore.

Other than Trestman, has any other coach survived working there for more than 3 consecutive years?

Anonymous said...

It sounds like Bob needs to put on his big girl panties and realize it can not always be his way . This is too bizrre even foe Montreal

Anonymous said...

So bizarre - first time the team wins at GM Place in Vancouver in 15 years (with a rookie QB) and the guy who coached them gets the boot? Tom was never Popp's guy, so must have been something going on behind the scenes.

Anonymous said...

So Gary Lawless didn't have "sources" in Montreal to report this?

Anonymous said...

Hmmm interesting they let their coach go after a win and hear we are with one of the worst starts in franchise history.Not to mention only 2 wins going back to last year and we do absolutely nothing!!But everything is good in Riderville as the media and coaches have made every excuse possible.

Anonymous said...

Gotta feel for Higgins 3-5 with a 3rd string qb. If he was in Regina the local media would have pegged for coach of the year. I guess different expectations in Montreal.

Anonymous said...

That's how it is in the free enterprise world. Not our Roughriders though, we've got a spineless BOD.

Anonymous said...

Not sure Brendan Taman could step in and coach. Old Popp wants just one more shot at coaching before he retires (or is retired). Oldhabits die hard.

Anonymous said...

Montreal has become the new loony tunes of football!!

GangGreen said...

Bring Higgins to Regina. He'll take us to the top!!

Anonymous said...

Losing condoned by Saskatchewan Roughriders CFL franchise management with no accountable remediation in sight. 2015! High time this system that has produced only four Grey Cup titles in a one hundred plus year history is abolished as evident by the pathetic record to date.

Anonymous said...

OSKEE WEE WEE,
OSKEE WAA WAA,
HOLY MAKINAW !!!!
Saskatchewan Roughrifers laughing stock of the CFL.

Go Cats Go ! Go Cats Go ! Go Cats Go !

Mr. Oskee Wee Wee

Anonymous said...

Better than the gimmicks that CC is trying to pull.

Mind you if CC knew how to coach he would not have to resort to gimmicks.

Anonymous said...

I'd take 3-5 about now.

Anonymous said...

Even more bizarre is why they ever hired Higgins in the first place. He's a terrible coach.

Anonymous said...

Gang Green you should quit taking that Medicine your on , it is really starting to affect your way of thinking .

Anonymous said...

How it is in the free enterprise world? Huh? Spent many years in that world dealing with 1,000s of businesses and learned that it is not as monolithic as often perceived. Success comes in many packages including different management styles. Some would fire people to exact fear and some patiently groom people. They are all different. No magic formula. Go Riders!

Anonymous said...

No the Montreal and Sk situations are not the same. How do I know. Actually I don't and neither does anyone else.

Anonymous said...

This is a real head scratcher in a number of ways. The guy has done a good job for them over their transition period. Got them to the playoffs the last year in his first season. This year with a 3rd string QB he has them two game under .500 and likely headed to at least 9-9 or better if he gets a veteran QB back. If the Riders had a 3-5 record we would be euphoric. Instead we are 0-7 likely heading to an even worse record and the club hasn't done a single thing with the management/coaching etc, which is very suspect. The fact that Montreal wasn't happy with their 3-5 record and chose to be pro-active and took some action is in start contrast to the Riders organization. It casts a spotlight and very critical eye on the Riders directors and their vision for this club.

Anonymous said...

To me it appears a move not to displace Higgen's but rather to give Popp a last chance to coach before retiring. When you have a single owner, he can interfere anyway he wants and there is no one to complain. More interesting will be to see how the team fairs after this change. Better or worse?
One last thing. To the Anonymous posters who always bring up the fact that the Riders only have 4 Grey Cups, give it up. You are not providing any incite or new information. I notice that you don't ever indicate which team you support. Why? Because I am sure we could find something stupid to talk about with your team too. So just piss off.

Anonymous said...

Chamblin has a free pass because he won a Grey Cup. Back in the day Higgins won one too but that doesn't count.

Anonymous said...

Four and five not good enough........gone.

Oh for, Coulda, woulda, shoulda, oh well it's a good football team to be winless. Ref and penalties and injuries. Would like to see how another club performs after losing their first and second string qb.

A tale of two franchises and how they deal with adversity.

Anonymous said...

Montreal Alouettes ownership doesn't condone a losing record. That's the difference between a bunch of buffoons running (B of D) a professional sports franchise with blind mismanaged vision. Sickening the way Sk upper management is silent with current on field direction 0-7 and its continuance.

Anonymous said...

Would like to see how another club performs after losing their first and second string qb.


Well Montreal is 3-5, and 3-4 with their 3rd string QB (with a QB who was on the Riders neg list and they dropped before this training camp because he didn’t show up to a camp down south and kept Sunseri around instead)

Anonymous said...

Hey Oskie. Last CUP win was .........???
Your Team was the laughing stock for an entire decade let alone just one year..... Short memory eh???????

Anonymous said...

Higgins is hot garbage. Always has been, always will be. The only head scratcher is the idea that people think this guy is a head coach.

Anonymous said...

too many championships to count. It's the roughriders who are the embarrassing laughing stock of the cfl, always have been, your fanbase just too gullible and stupid to realize it.