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Friday, April 7, 2017

ESKIMOS FIRE ED HERVEY

EDMONTON - Winning wasn't enough for Ed Hervey to remain with the Edmonton Eskimos.

Hervey was fired as the club's vice-president of football operations and general manager on Friday just over a year after leading Edmonton to a Grey Cup title. Hervey was in the final year of his deal but president/CEO Len Rhodes said he decided - with the board of directors' blessing - to terminate Hervey after the two sides had reached an impasse in contract negotiations.

"Two major reasons drove this decision,'' Rhodes told reporters during a news conference in Edmonton. "First, both parties could not agree to contract extension terms.

"Secondly, there are differences in philosophy over the way we do business. During the course of recent negotiations for a possible contract extension, it became clear that we would be unable to meet Ed's expectations.''

Paul Jones, Edmonton's veteran executive director of player personnel, will serve as interim GM. Rhodes said while his search for Hervey's successor begins immediately, he wouldn't provide a timeline regarding when he'd like a new general manager in place.

Rhodes said Maas, heading into his second season as Eskimos head coach, will remain in that post regardless of who's hired as GM.

"Jason Mass is our head coach, there is no doubt about that,'' he said. "A new GM is not coming in to fix something that's not broken.''

Hervey's departure prompted an interesting response from Eskimos receiver Nate Coehoorn.

"Crazy news out of Eskimo land. I wonder if giving pay cuts to a lot of veteran players had anything to do with it,'' he tweeted before deleting his post.

Rhodes said philosophical differences regarding team access contributed to his decision to fire Hervey.

"The resistance to provide access became increasingly an difficult issue over the past year,'' Rhodes said. "It became a barrier to what we feel is required to grow our organization in terms of success in a marketplace that's increasingly competitive.

"We are a major brand in this community. We can't be held back by our own barriers. When you talk about access, that's the major gap we had.''

Last season, the CFL fined Edmonton $20,000 and Maas $15,000 after Maas and starter Mike Reilly refused to wear live microphones during a game against the Montreal Alouettes. The live microphones were part of a league-wide move to provide fans with access to the interactions between coaches and quarterbacks.

In his ruling, commissioner Jeffrey Orridge said Maas's failure to wear the mic "was a direct contravention of a directive for this league's board of governors, a motion supported by all nine clubs.''

Maas and Reilly wore live microphones in Edmonton's regular-season finale Nov. 6 against Toronto. But Reilly didn't play in the 41-17 home victory while Maas pretty much stood silent after relegating play-calling duties to his offensive assistants.

Media access has also been a hot-button topic since 2014 when the community-owned Eskimos abruptly closed their locker-room to reporters. The club still makes its players available on the field after practice but since '14 has only opened up the locker-room following home games.

Edmonton posted a 40-32 record over four seasons under Hervey, reaching the playoffs three times. In 2015, Edmonton captured the Grey Cup.

"Yes we did win a Grey Cup but it's not enough,'' Rhodes said. "We've got to approach this differently.

"After winning the Grey Cup we didn't fill the stands. Fan access, media access, season seat-holder access, sponsorship access and showcasing our athletes are all important areas allowing us to grow our fanbase and ultimately the success of the Edmonton Eskimos football club.''

Hervey, 43, had served as Edmonton's GM since December 2012 and added the vice-president of football operations job title in 2015.

The six-foot-two, 195-pound Hervey joined the Eskimos as a receiver in 1999 after spending time in the NFL with the Dallas Cowboys, Denver Broncos and Oakland Raiders. He was taken in the fifth round, 166th overall, in the '95 NFL draft by Dallas following his collegiate career at USC.

He appeared in 118 career games with Edmonton, registering 476 catches for 6,715 yards and 43 TDs over eight seasons. He won two Grey Cups as a player (2003, '05) and in '06 received the David Boone Memorial Award his contributions to the community.

Hervey retired March 20, 2007 and served as a scout with Edmonton before being named the club's GM on Dec. 10, 2012. He added a third Grey Cup title in 2015 when the Eskimos beat the Ottawa Redblacks 26-20 in Winnipeg.

Overall, Edmonton posted a 40-32 record under Hervey, reaching the CFL playoffs in three of his four seasons at the helm.

Last year, Hervey received a bachelor of arts degree in multidisciplinary studies from the University of Nevada, Las Vegas, fulfilling a promise he'd made to his mother to earn a college degree.

(Canadian Press)

25 comments:

Anonymous said...

WOW. does this mean Jones is leaving for more money?

Morgan said...

The Eskimos are in big big trouble...

Anonymous said...

Time for Jones to move in, make a deal and snatch our future star Franklin!

Anonymous said...

Very very surprised by this development. Thought Hervey was THE MAN in Eskimoville. Must be an interesting story behind it.

Bart in Regina

Anonymous said...

Someone else made the comment that there has to be a story behind this, because teams are close to starting the season.

It will be interesting to see what happens.....

Anonymous said...

No surprise there, other than the Shmoes not giving their lame duck GM a few more years to completely wreak the team.

Anonymous said...

Yeah, Bart in Regina......Hopefully, the story is Jones is gonna pack up his bags and return to Edmonton......

Larry said...

Esks are not going to make any quick trades based on Hervey being fired....give up on the Franklin deal this year.
Barker or Taman fit the bill and are qualified.

Anonymous said...

Didn't fill seats?? Edmonton averaged around 31,000 per game, just below the Riders for 2nd best attendance in the league. League average was around 24,600. Like BC and Toronto the problem is too big a stadium, and the Oilers will always be top draw in Edmonton. I think there are other issues here.

Anonymous said...

Look for Mr. O'Day to become the Eskimo's new GM. You read it here first!

Anonymous said...

Ed Harvey dimissal bush league! Len Rhodes the goof should have been the guy out the door! Highly probable he wants a good yes man. Edmonton Eskimos are always in the mix as a legit contender to the Grey Cup every year with their on field product. A team product courtesy of Ed Hervey and his assembled staff. Bad move on the Edmonton organization so close to the upcoming season. Len Rhodes_ a one finger salute to you!

Go Eskimos

Anonymous said...

Sounds like it is about media access (i.e. not wearing mics) and Rhodes caving under pressure from the league?
LF

CM said...

Hervey was a decent GM. He got Reilly and built around him quickly. Im sure he lands somewhere.

Anonymous said...

Qualified for what, exactly?

Anonymous said...

Rider fans have to be very happy that Len Rhoads is running things up in Edmonton. Just think .. if he had been on the ball he would have resolved the Hervey contract decision a few months ago and then chances are that Popp and Trestman would be running the show in Edmonton - imagine a Mike Reilly - Marc Trestman offense - Yikes!

Anonymous said...

Mr Murphy you mean.

Anonymous said...

Esks are no longer the dynasty and leaders in the CFL. That title goes to the Riders now.

3RD and 1 said...

It is being said that Ed Hervey was out of control. He listened to no one. He felt he was on an island all by himself.
He proved that when he told TSN that his QB and coach were not going to be mic'd up during a game.
He had to be fired. It's just horrible timing. This should have been done at the end of last year.

Anonymous said...

TSN has to be happy! Perhaps now the baloney with the Eskimos refusing to mic up their coach will just be a sad footnote on arrogance and stupidity.

Anonymous said...

Hervey certainly wasnt well liked in the community. Probably him and Len Rhodes the president butted heads. The Esks used to be good about supplying tickets and trips to commonwealth stadium and promotional itmes in the communiyt. That ended under Hervey. Rhodes is the consummate community guy, so I can see a clash. Wouldnt doubt that Oday is in line for this. But again, Barker and Taman are both available. I also believe that letting Jones go along with taking his whole staff, kinda saw the beggining of the end for Hervey.

@mrt_man said...

What the heck? That's some fairly odd timing.

Anonymous said...

Philosophical differences. The Esk's are moving in a different direction. Interpret as you like and will.

Anonymous said...

Rhodes gave two reasons;

1 - Hervey was in the last year of his contact and negotiating a extension has reached an impasse.

2 - The Team administration wanted the team more available to the fans/press/season ticket holders/sponsors.

Rhodes said it is about more than winning, etc.

Anonymous said...

Thank goodness, that guy was a real detriment to the CFL

Anonymous said...

Hmm Salary cap audits were returned from the league last week to the teams for them to request a review.