Marc Trestman is still recovering from two major setbacks – being let go as Toronto Argos head coach and double hip replacement surgery – but it sounds like he’s well on his way back.
“I’m five weeks out… feeling great – moving around, so it’s been a good month,” Trestman said recently on CKRM The SportsCage.
Trestman was relieved of bench boss duties following a last-place finish in 2018.
“We were truly a 4-14 team, I loved our coaches, I loved our players, I thought everybody stayed together throughout the season. I look at it as one of my better coaching jobs actually, in terms of just keeping a team together, working hard, our daily life was good. Guys were fun to coach and be around,” Trestman said.
“Owners make a decision, general managers make a decision, presidents make a decision and I own our record. In my mind, personally, it was one of my better coaching jobs. I’m sorry it didn’t work out.”
Trestman was notified by Argos president Bill Manning at 2 a.m. on Nov. 3 that he had been fired as head coach while still on the team bus after losing to the Ottawa Redblacks in the last regular season game. But Trestman “really didn’t want to” comment on the way he received the news.
“People have to make decisions: they do it the way they want to do it. I don’t control that. What I controlled, I was able to coach that team for 180-something days. I consider the season a success in many ways,” Trestman said.
According to 3DownNation’s Justin Dunk, Trestman was the highest-paid coach in the CFL, earning over $600,000, far greater than the $275,000 to $400,000 typical for the position. His three-year contract still had a season to run and coaching contracts are fully guaranteed so Trestman is likely to receive full value for 2019.
But the high price tag might have been a factor in the decision to get rid of Trestman due to the new football operations cap set at just under $2.59 million for the next two seasons.
“I’ve never been one to stand on a pedestal. That’s a business decision. Coaches should make as much money as they can and players should make as much money as they can. It’s a hard game. The league has to make certain decisions,” Trestman said.
“I just don’t have the expertise to make comments about something I don’t really understand. I just think that coaches should be able to negotiate and be able to get paid what they feel they should get paid or ownership feels they should get paid and not be capped by that. But I don’t know the specifics or the business plan in place to think that that’s going to benefit the league.”