Saskatchewan Roughriders President & CEO Craig Reynolds updated the media on the team’s General Manager search on Thursday morning at Mosaic Stadium. The full video of the news conference is available at the Riders’ official website www.riderville.com.
Here are some notes from Reynolds’ comments:
– The shortlist will likely consist of four applicants and current interim GM Jeremy O’Day is expected to be one of them. Ideally Reynolds would like to announce the hiring by mid-December.
– The Riders are using a search firm to help conduct the process. They’ve targeted some candidates and have already interviewed some of them.
– Rumours of potential candidates are to be taken for what they are, and won’t deter the process. Reynolds says they’ve received permission from teams to speak with some candidates while other teams have refused permission.
– The successful candidate will possess strong negotiation skills, personel savvy and the ability to make tough decisions.
– Reynolds says he is not critquing Jeremy O’Day’s performance as interim GM at this point. He said O’Day bares some responsiblity for the 3-15 season of 2015 but the same is true for the 2013 championship campaign. Jeremy will have the opportunity to explain all of that in the formal interview.
– The Roughriders are open to a Head Coach/GM combo since both positions are currently vacant with the club, however it’s a special/unique individual who’s able to do that.
– Prior CFL experience is very important. The Riders have received interest from applicants in both Canada and the USA however if you’re American, it’s imperative that you have working knowledge of the CFL game. The majority of the applicants have CFL experience.
– Reynolds says this is a critical hire, regardless of the fact the team is moving into a new stadium in 2017. The GM sets the vision and the culture of the organization.
– Reynolds says ultimately this hiring is his decision, and he owns it. He is prepared for the criticism which will inevitably follow.
– Reynolds expects to be a very busy man during Grey Cup Week in Winnipeg, but prefers not to hold any formal interviews that week.
– The Rider President said it’s not as critical to hire a “big name” as the team’s next GM, but would rather hire the right guy.
– Should Jeremy O’Day not be named General Manager, the team hopes to retain his services. Reynolds says they think very highly of O’Day, plus he still has term left on his contract.