Suspended front office executive John Murphy expected to rejoin Argonauts: report

Photo courtesy: Bob Butrym

Former vice president of player personnel John Murphy is expected to return to the Toronto Argonauts’ front office next season, according to a new report from Sportsnet’s Arash Madani.

Murphy is often credited as one of the architects of the Argos’ Grey Cup-winning roster but has been out of the CFL since December 2021, when he was suspended indefinitely by the league for allegedly taking part in a post-game altercation following the East Final. He was later terminated by the Argonauts after an internal review.

Multiple videos surfaced on social media following Toronto’s playoff loss to the Hamilton Tiger-Cats at BMO Field allegedly capturing an altercation between Murphy and a Ticats fan. The pair appeared to be physically jostling at a stadium barricade while security tried to prevent the men from exchanging blows.

Accompanying audio appeared to show Murphy using derogatory language during the incident, though neither the CFL nor MLSE publicly commented on those allegations. In later Twitter posts, Murphy has admitted to making “a terrible choice and decision to use language that is unacceptable” while professing his intention to “assist in making a positive impact” for the LGBTQ+ community going forward.

The altercation in question appeared to begin after the Ticats fan witnessed the front office executive yelling at another Black and Gold supporter who had crossed the barricade. Their heated exchange was one of several incidents as tempers boiled over in the aftermath of the game, resulting in a suspension for linebacker Chris Edwards after he climbed into the stands to confront members of the Hamilton faithful and the implementation of a new fan code of conduct.

Murphy was originally hired by Toronto in 2019 and was elevated to vice president of player personnel after former general manager Jim Popp was fired. He has previously worked for the Saskatchewan Roughriders, Calgary Stampeders and Winnipeg Blue Bombers in football personnel roles.

No official announcement has been made regarding Murphy’s reinstatement by the CFL. He is expected to fill the void left by senior advisor Jim Barker, who is reportedly returning to the TSN panel.