Uproar in the Offseason

Twitter Fracas Calls for Football Head Coach to Resign

Photo Amanda Laprade

With the season coming to an abrupt end at the hands on the Laval Rouge et Or this past Saturday, several Concordia Stingers football coaches and players are publically rebelling against long-time head coach Gerry McGrath.

According to the Twitter feed of TSN 990 radio host Moe Khan, a coaching change may be on the horizon for the football program as early as this afternoon.

Khan, who follows the team on a regular basis and commentates Stingers games on the radio station, revealed toe first signs of discontent at around 2 p.m. on Monday.

“I just received word the exodus will begin with the #Stingers. There is a lot of toxic air right now surrounding the football team.”

More tweets began to crop up on Khan’s feed throughout the afternoon, as several anonymous sources informed him of the disturbances on the team.

“There are deep issues pertaining to the #Stingers. Some people have decided to move on,” he wrote. “McGrath has burnt too many bridges with the #CEGEP teams. Coaches are sending the kids elsewhere.

“This is becoming something big,” he later tweeted. “Another call I received from a player said ‘if McGrath is back, I quit.’”

Another source allegedly wrote in, telling Khan, “No one can deal with McGrath anymore [and] it’s time for a change.”

While the Stingers season began with hopes winning a championship, the team was mired in a long-standing quarterback controversy and was followed by consistently inconsistent play on both sides of the ball. This eventually lead to a disappointing 4-5 record followed by an easy ousting at the hands of Laval.

Despite the reports, defensive coordinator Phil Roberts minimized the issue, stating other factors could have lead to the player’s frustration.

“The one coach I’m assuming that [Khan’s] talking about [in his tweets] is dealing with some family related stuff,” Roberts said. “That’s why this particular coach is potentially resigning.

“Every year coaches leave,” he added, explaining he’d spoken with another five of the coaches who anticipate to remain on staff next season. “You’re working a job that doesn’t pay all that much but forces you to spend so much time away from your family.”

Roberts also said that, while he’s shocked about the controversy that’s sprung up, he understands where some dissenting players might be coming from.

“When you lose, obviously changes have to be made, within the staff, within our method of coaching-the way we do things,” he said. “We have to take all of that into account.”

While he said he has no idea who Khan’s Stinger sources are, he guessed “upset players” were likely the ones calling in.

“When you lose, young kids say things they may regret for a long time,” he said. “[McGrath] is a huge family guy and he’s there for the kids, big-time—he’ll do anything for them.”

When asked about the reports, some of the football players, who wished to remain anonymous, had some pointed comments on the subject.

“I can’t confirm anything; we’ll just have to see what the future holds,” said one player. “Overall, [the controversy] is not good for the program. People will think we’re a joke. I really don’t like it.”

“Everything has been speculation up until this point,” said another. “We have a team meeting tomorrow and this will most likely come up. […] No one is happy after going 4-5 in the regular season and then getting eliminated by a score of 33-7.”

Coach McGrath and assistant offensive coordinator Bryan Chiu were unavailable for comment by press time.