Posts Tagged ‘Montreal Alouettes’

The BC Lions have acquired quarterback Vernon Adams Jr. in a trade with the Montreal Alouettes, the Lions announced Wednesday.

The Alouettes received a 2023 first-round pick in return for Adams.

Adams previously landed on the six-game injured list due to elbow tendinitis, but is now healthy. He has thrown for 294 yards with one touchdown to two interceptions over five appearances this season.

The 29-year-old has accumulated 43 touchdown passes and 26 picks since entering the CFL in 2016. His best work came in 2019 when he notched 3,942 passing yards, 24 passing scores, and an additional 12 rushing touchdowns.

The Lions have been in need of a quarterback since losing Nathan Rourke to a Lisfranc sprain earlier this month. However, the club is hopeful he’ll make a late-season return after he recovers from surgery.

Rourke was in the midst of an impressive campaign prior to his injury. He tallied 3,281 passing yards and 25 touchdowns to 10 interceptions in his first season as the Lions’ starting passer.

Despite losing Rourke, the Lions remain in a good position with an 8-2 record. They rank second in the West division behind the 10-1 Winnipeg Blue Bombers.

Once again, the CFL has an ownership issue with the Montreal Alouettes to deal with.

Minority owner Gary Stern announced Monday he’s stepping away from the club’s day-to-day operations as well as his position on the CFL board of governors.

“Today, I am forced to share with you my current reality; I can no longer be responsible for the day-to-day operations of the Montreal Alouettes,” Stern wrote in an open letter to Alouettes fans. “This was a very tough decision for me and my family, but it is a final decision.

“I love this team. I love Montreal and our fans. As a lifelong sports fan, my role with the Alouettes was a dream come true. I loved every minute of it.”

Neither the CFL nor Alouettes immediately commented about Stern’s letter.

Stern and his business partner/father-in-law, Sid Spiegel, purchased the Alouettes in January 2020 from the CFL, but Spiegel never saw the franchise play.

The CFL cancelled the ’20 season due to the COVID-19 pandemic and Spiegel died in July 2020. His age wasn’t divulged but Spiegel was listed as 89 when he and Stern purchased the Alouettes.

“My wife Julie and I still mourn the loss, just over a year ago, of her father Sid Spiegel, who was my lifelong partner in business and in our shared dream of owning the Alouettes,” Stern wrote. “He was also my close partner in life.

“His death has effectively shelved the amazing plans we had for the Alouettes. We were ready and wanted to invest long-term in the future of the Alouettes. Due to COVID-19 cancelling CFL play, Sid, who was the 75 per cent majority owner, sadly never got a chance to see his team play. I will always regret that.”

Stern also served as the Alouettes’ CEO.

“Today, decisions related to team financing and operations rest with Sid’s estate,” Stern wrote. “The close partnership Sid and I had, which included our shared love of sports and our ability to grow our team the way we have invested and grown our other joint businesses for decades, no longer exists.

“I wish nothing but the best for our team, our fans and our community. I remain one of the Alouettes’ and the CFL’s biggest fans. But I will be cheering from the sidelines as I return to my role as a private citizen and step back. Thank you to everyone in Montreal. I will always cherish the memories we have made.”

American businessman Robert Wetenhall owned the Alouettes from 1997 until 2018 before the CFL took over operating the franchise while it searched for new ownership.

For much of Wetenhall’s tenure, the Alouettes were a CFL powerhouse.

From 1999 to 2012, they finished atop the East Division 10 times and advanced to the Grey Cup on eight occasions, winning three. But Montreal’s last Grey Cup win during Wetenhall’s ownership was in 2010 and the franchise missed the CFL playoffs the last four year of his tenure, amassing a 21-51 overall record over that span.

And there were reports the Alouettes lost $12 million in Wetenhall’s final season as the owner.

Wetenhall passed away in September 2021. He was 86.

Wetenhall and Stern were polar opposites as owners. While Wetenhall chose to remain behind the scenes, Stern took to social media to actively become the face of the franchise, going so far as to boldly predict victories for his team.

The ’22 season has been a roller-coaster affair for Montreal (4-6), which is second in the East Division. The team fired head coach Khari Jones after opening the season 1-3, with GM Danny Maciocia taking over as coach on an interim basis.

Montreal remains the only CFL team to have defeated the Grey Cup-champion Winnipeg Blue Bombers this season. But last week the club suspended fullback Christophe Normand indefinitely as he faces two charges of luring a child under 18, including one count of luring a child under 16, or who the accused believed was under 16 at the time of the offence.

Montreal hosts the Ottawa Redblacks (2-8) on Friday night. On Saturday, the Alouettes drew a season-high 21,014 fans to Molson Stadium for their come-from-behind 29-28 victory over the Hamilton Tiger-Cats.

The Montreal Alouettes handed the Winnipeg Blue Bombers their first loss of the season with a tight 20-17 overtime victory Thursday.

Marc Liegghio bounced a 37-yard field-goal attempt off the upright in overtime, sealing the Bombers’ loss. It was Liegghio’s second straight miss after he failed to convert a potential 32-yard game-winner in the final seconds of regulation.

The reigning Grey Cup champions came into the contest with a perfect 9-0 record and were looking for their first 10-0 start since 1960. Dating back to last postseason, the Bombers had won 11 consecutive games before Thursday’s defeat.

Montreal’s Trevor Harris completed 18-of-27 passes for 213 yards with no touchdowns or interceptions. Both of the Alouettes’ touchdowns were punched in by Dominique Davis.

The Bombers outgained the Alouettes 369 to 283 in yardage and outrushed their foes 118-70. Winnipeg running back Brady Oliveira accumulated 84 rushing yards while quarterback Zach Collaros threw for 251 yards with one touchdown.

The 9-1 Bombers remain on top of the West division despite the loss. Montreal now moves to 3-6, still behind the 4-3 Toronto Argonauts in the East division.

Winnipeg had defeated Montreal on the road the week prior 35-20. The Bombers will enjoy a bye before resuming their schedule with a matchup against the Calgary Stampeders on Aug. 25.

Montreal Alouettes’ owner Gary Stern has developed a reputation for making bold declarations on Twitter and this week was no exception as he expressed his belief that his team will defeat the Winnipeg Blue Bombers on Thursday.

Game against Winnipeg coming up fast . No one gives us a chance I sincerely believe , we are at home , we have the talent , coaches installed great systems , we will win this game . @MiltStegallTSN @MattDuniganTSN @DavisSanchez don’t write this team off .

Stern tagged a number of CFL on TSN panelists in his tweet, which was likely a reference to Milt Stegall’s guarantee that the Ottawa Redblacks would beat the Alouettes in Week 7. Montreal ended up winning the game 40-33, causing Stegall to eat crow on local radio.

When a fan of the Blue Bombers reminded Stern that Winnipeg will take full advantage of any mistakes the Alouettes make on Thursday, the owner expressed his respect for the reigning Grey Cup champions while proudly defending his team.

No question , they a great team , no question, we going to have to play almost perfect football . But that’s all doable . Look for an alouette victory !!

The Alouettes are coming off a 24-17 loss to the Hamilton Tiger-Cats that dropped them to 2-5 on the season and a tie for second place in the East Division. They remain only two points behind the Toronto Argonauts (3-3) for first place in the standings, though the Boatmen have a game in hand.

Winnipeg is coming off a 35-28 victory over the Calgary Stampeders in which they played near-perfect football. The club is off to their first 8-0 start since 1960 and have won 16 consecutive meaningful regular-season games dating back to last season.

One thing working to Montreal’s advantage is that the Blue Bombers are coming off a short week. Winnipeg will have to play at Percival Molson Stadium on only four days of rest and their ninth consecutive week without a bye.

If the Alouettes pull off the upset over Winnipeg, Stern will look like a genius for making his bold prediction. If not, Stern will have to ask Stegall for the best way to prepare fresh crow.

The Montreal Alouettes fired head coach Khari Jones and defensive coordinator Barron Miles, the team announced Wednesday.

“This kind of decision is always difficult to make, but we felt that we needed to make it early in the season while there is still time,” general manager Danny Maciocia said in a statement. The Alouettes are off to a 1-3 start.

Maciocia will replace Jones as head coach until the end of the season, while longtime CFL assistant coach Noel Thorpe will take over for Miles as defensive coordinator and defensive backs coach.

The 55-year-old Maciocia, who joined Montreal as GM in 2020, has a lot of coaching experience. He was Edmonton’s head coach from 2005-08, posting a 33-38-1 record and helping the team win the Grey Cup in 2005. He also won the Grey Cup as offensive coordinator in Edmonton in 2003.

Maciocia coached the Universite de Montreal Carabins from 2011-19 before joining the Alouettes.

Montreal lost 41-20 to the Saskatchewan Roughriders on Saturday. The Alouettes have allowed 104 points in 2022, the third-most in the league behind the Hamilton Tiger-Cats (118) and the Edmonton Elks (140).

The Montreal Alouettes are entering the 2022 season with big expectations in the eyes of their owner and a failure to meet them could result in major organizational changes.

In an interview with the Montreal Gazette this week, Alouettes owner Gary Stern told long-time beat reporter Herb Zurkowsky that this will be a make-or-break season for his franchise.

“This year will tell if we’re just talk or real — and I believe we’re real,” Stern said. “If it doesn’t come together, I have a lot of questions. We owe it to the fans to put a team together that’s entertaining and wins. If the team wins and is entertaining, I don’t see why they won’t come out. If they don’t … you have to look at your own internal organization.”

“This season will determine what the CFL and Als are about. If not, by midseason, you’ll see me take action, although I’m not sure what that means.”

Stern and his late business partner Sid Spiegel purchased the Alouettes in January of 2020 under the corporate entity S and S Sportsco. Siegel passed away in July of 2021 having never seen his franchise play and Stern has yet to reap financial benefits after the 2020 season was cancelled and the 2021 campaign was shortened.

The team averaged just over 13,000 in the stands at Percival Molson Stadium last year while finishing with a 7-7 record, numbers that weren’t good enough on either front to see a return on investment for the Als owner.

“I’m a big man and I’m not stupid,” Stern told the Gazette. “I knew what I was getting into. Am I putting in way more work than I thought? Yes. Way more money? Yes. I admit I could have handled some things differently. It’s nobody’s fault. Last year, I don’t know how anybody could have made money; we knew we weren’t. I can’t blame people for not coming out.”

“The fans are passionate and love it; there’s just not enough of them. It’s up to ownership and the team to give them what they need. Then if they don’t come, you go as a business person and say I think we have a problem.”

The Alouettes will need to reach new heights on the field if they expect the stands to be filled and that presses a bullseye firmly onto the back of head coach Khari Jones. While team president Mario Cecchini and general manager Danny Maciocia arrived on the scene shortly after Stern’s purchase, Jones was a hire from the previous administration suddenly thrust into the top job to begin the 2019 season.

While he’s led the Alouettes to back-to-back playoff appearances, criticism of his team’s discipline plagued Jones last season and there have been rumours of a rift between him and Maciocia, who could be eyeing a return to the sideline.

While Stern won’t say where the axe will come down if the team underperforms — and later promised not to meddle on Twitter — the expectations are clear. Jones will need to field a winning team that’s exciting enough to put butts in seats or changes will be made.

The Montreal Alouettes selected Syracuse linebacker Tyrell Richards with the first overall pick in the 2022 CFL Draft.

Montreal acquired the pick by trading the fourth overall selection and the rights to offensive lineman Carter O’Donnell to the Edmonton Elks.

“We are extremely happy to have moved up for tonight’s draft,” general manager Danny Maciocia said. “We will select a high-quality player without having to pay the big price.”

The native of Brampton, Ontario, ranked third on the CFL’s final scouting bureau list, behind wide receiver John Metchie and linebacker Jesse Luketa. Both Metchie (Houston Texans) and Luketa (Arizona Cardinals) were taken in the 2022 NFL Draft last weekend.

The 6-foot-3, 232-pound defender racked up 24 tackles, 3.5 tackles for loss, and two sacks over eight games during the 2020 season. Richards finished his Syracuse career with 54 tackles (9.5 for a loss) and six sacks in 31 games.

Richards spent last year training and coaching his former high school after considering several options following his transfer from Syracuse.

Despite not playing a game in 2021, Richards impressed evaluators with his testing numbers at the CFL combine in March. He posted a 37-inch vertical jump, 19 reps on the bench press, and ran the 40-yard dash in 4.60 seconds.

The Alouettes doubled down on Syracuse defenders on Tuesday, also selecting defensive lineman Kingsley Jonathan with the first pick in the CFL Global Draft earlier in the day.

The Montreal Alouettes have unveiled new helmets, overhauling the look that was introduced in February 2019 featuring their new logo.

The logo has been moved from the top of the helmet to the side of the helmet and given a bold white outline. The top of the helmet now features a thick red stripe outlined in white.

The helmets will be worn for the first time on Saturday, May 28 in Hamilton against the Tiger-Cats. Alouettes fans will see them for the first time at home when Montreal hosts the Ottawa Redblacks on Friday, June 3 at Percival-Molson Memorial Stadium.

The Edmonton Elks traded quarterback Trevor Harris to the Montreal Alouettes, the team announced Sunday.

Edmonton received defensive end Antonio Simmons in exchange.

Harris, 35, fills a need under center for Montreal, who recently placed starter Vernon Adams Jr. on the six-game injured list with a shoulder ailment.

“Trevor is a veteran who knows the league well and what it takes to win,” said Alouettes general manager Danny Maciocia, according to CFL.ca. “We are pleased to have been able to complete this transaction. We are confident that Trevor will work well with our quarterbacks.

“We thank Antonio for his services and wish him well.”

The veteran signal-caller gets a fresh start after being benched in favor of Taylor Cornelius. Harris didn’t dress for the Elks’ Week 11 loss to the Winnipeg Blue Bombers after Dakota Prukop was tabbed as the backup.

Edmonton coach Jamie Elizondo said he turned to his team’s younger passers in order to find a “spark” for his club, per The Canadian Press.

Harris joins his fourth CFL club in nine seasons after also spending time with Toronto and Ottawa.

The two-time Grey Cup-winning passer racked up 1,568 yards and six touchdowns while completing 70% of his passes through six contests.

Simmons, a second-year player, tallied 52 tackles, five sacks, and a forced fumble during his Montreal tenure.

The Montreal Alouettes announced on Tuesday that Head Coach Khari Jones has tested positive for COVID-19 and will be in isolation from the rest of the team for a minimum of ten days, after which his situation will be re-evaluated.

Since receiving this diagnostic, Jones has remained in preventive isolation at home and is feeling well. He is asymptomatic and remains in constant contact with the team doctors.

Jones received the diagnosis late on Sunday, following the tests that the entire team passed on Saturday. He has followed social distancing guidelines and has received both doses of the COVID-19 vaccine in the past months.

During his absence, Assistant Head Coach and Running Back Coach André Bolduc will coach the team on Saturday, September 18, against the BC Lions. Jones will work virtually with Bolduc and the other members of the Alouettes coaching staff.

Following this news, players and team personnel were all tested once more on Monday and no other positive tests were detected.

Since the beginning of training camp, players along with team personnel are tested on a regular basis and must follow a league protocol, which was approuved by public health. These measures are monitored closely by the CFL.

The Alouettes will share further updates in the upcoming days.