Elks extend veteran defensive coordinator Noel Thorpe through 2022

Photo courtesy: Edmonton Elks

The Edmonton Elks have inked an extension with long-time CFL coach Noel Thorpe, keeping their defensive coordinator, assistant head coach, and defensive backs coach with the team until 2022.

Thorpe’s new deal was made official Friday morning, as the Elks continue to gear up for their 2021 season opener Saturday, August 7 against the Ottawa RedBlacks.

“Noel brings a wealth of experience and a track record of success as a CFL defensive coordinator to the Elks,” said general manager and vice president of football operations Brock Sunderland. “We’re happy to have him add another year to his contract so that he is with us through the 2022 season.”

A native of Vancouver, B.C., Thorpe most recently joined the Elks in January of 2020 under then-head coach Scott Milanovich.

Thorpe previously served in multiple capacities — assistant head coach, special teams coordinator and defensive backs coach — over a three-year span in Edmonton between 2008 and 2010.

“I’m grateful for this extension and want to thank both Brock and Jaime for this opportunity in a city that my family and I now consider home,” said Thorpe.

“I have the utmost respect for this organization, the community, and the people in this building that truly make being an Edmonton Elk special.”

The veteran coach has spent nearly a decade as a CFL defensive coordinator, after holding the same title with the Montreal Alouettes (2013-2017) and Ottawa Redblacks (2018-2019).

2021 will be Thorpe’s 18th season in the CFL after initially breaking into the league as a special teams coordinator with Montreal in 2002 when the Als won the Grey Cup in Edmonton.

Prior to the CFL, Thorpe coached for five seasons at the University of British Columbia (1996-2000), winning a Vanier Cup in 1997, and Simon Fraser University (2001).