Anthony Calvillo, Jason Maas among five finalists for Montreal Alouettes’ head coaching job

Photo: Bob Butrym/3DownNation. All rights reserved.

The final CFL head coaching vacancy may be close to being filled as the Montreal Alouettes divulged the five men who have completed the first round of interviews with general manager Danny Maciocia and president Mario Cecchini.

Montreal Alouettes defensive coordinator Noel Thorpe, quarterbacks coach Anthony Calvillo, special teams coordinator and linebackers coach Byron Archambault, running backs coach and assistant head coach André Bolduc and former Saskatchewan Roughriders offensive coordinator Jason Maas were the five names the team released publicly on Thursday.

Of the five, only Maas has previous CFL head coaching experience, having led the Edmonton Elks from 2016-2019, guiding them to three division finals (one West, two East) during his four years as the team’s bench boss.

The Als also revealed that they reached out to Laval Rouge et Or head coach Glen Constantin to gauge his interest in leading the Alouettes. Constantin, who recently led the Rouge et Or to their 11th Vanier Cup victory since taking over the program in 2001, declined the opportunity to interview.

Montreal also reached out to Bob Dyce before he was named the third head coach in Ottawa Redblacks history last week.

Calvillo, a franchise legend as a player, guided the Alouettes during their most successful seasons from 2000-2013. During that span, the team appeared in eight Grey Cups and won three, with Calvillo as the team’s starting quarterback.

The 50-year-old is a three-time Most Outstanding Player, a one-time Grey Cup Most Valuable Player, a four-time CFL all-star and retired as the CFL’s all-time leader in passing yards, passing touchdowns and pass attempts. He was enshrined in the Canadian Football Hall of Fame in 2017.

Thorpe is in his second stint as Alouettes’ defensive coordinator and third overall with the team, having also held the title from 2013-2017 as well as being the team’s special teams coordinator from 2002-2007. The Vancouver native has also spent time in the CFL with Edmonton and Ottawa as a defensive coordinator.

Archambault just finished his first season as Montreal’s special teams coordinator, taking over the position when Jeff Reinebold stepped aside in May due to personal matters. The Montreal native spent two seasons in the CFL as a player with the Hamilton Tiger-Cats after being selected in the second round, 17th overall, in the 2015 CFL Draft.

Bolduc spent six years as a player in the CFL with three teams, his final four seasons campaigns coming as a member of the Alouettes. He transitioned into coaching following his retirement in 2002 and has been on the Alouettes coaching staff in various capacities since 2014.

Montreal expects to hold the final round of interviews soon and wants to have a new head coach named before Christmas.