Alouettes GM Kavis Reed: ‘Just OK is not enough’

The Montreal Alouettes fired head coach Jacques Chapdelaine and defensive co-ordinator/assistant head coach Noel Thorpe on Wednesday.

The team said general manager Kavis Reed will serve as head coach until the end of the season.

“This decision was taken over the course of a few weeks,” Reed said at a morning availability. “We had a meeting yesterday. There’s never a right time.”

Quarterbacks coach Anthony Calvillo will take over offensive co-ordinator duties while defensive line coach Greg Quick will handle the defence.

The Alouettes are 3-8, have lost four games in a row, and sit third in the weak CFL East Division.

Reed said a new head coach would be in place for the 2018 campaign.

“Regardless of what happens, the franchise will have a head coach and it won’t be me,” he said.

The moves came a day after team co-owner Andrew Wetenhall warned there may be changes if the club does not start winning games and make the playoffs for the first time in three years.

Chapdelaine was promoted to interim head coach when Jim Popp was removed last September with the team mired in last place at 3-9. He took them to a 4-2 record over the final six games, but it was not enough to secure a playoff spot.

The interim tag on his job title was removed after the season, and Reed was handed the general manager’s job when Popp was fired.

Reed called Chapdelaine “a phenomenal individual,” but would not discuss the reasons on why the changes were made.

Chapdelaine was the team’s fourth head coach since Marc Trestman’s five-year stint ended after the 2012 season. Neither Chapdelaine, Dan Hawkins, Tom Higgins or Popp could produce a consistent winner.

Thorpe was with the Alouettes on and off since 2002. Defence has been the team’s main strength since he took over as co-ordinator in 2013.

“Everything’s relative,” Reed said. “If it’s just OK, we’re not going to be able to have the kind of team we want. Just OK is not enough. We felt our defence was good but never one you would call elite.”

– CP