TEAM CANADA COACHING BIOS
Former Head Coach, Western Mustangs (1984-2006)
Larry Haylor is the winningest coach in Canadian university football history with a career record of 178 wins, 47 losses and 4 ties. It is a mark many Canadian Interuniversity Sport (CIS) football coaches believe will never be equalled again.
In 22 seasons as head coach, Haylor won two Vanier Cups (national university title), 8 Yates Cups (Ontario university provincial title) in 13 appearances and every season finished with a record of .500 or better. Haylor is a six-time OUA Coach of the Year.
A seven-time OUA coach of the year and a two-time recipient of the Frank Tindall Trophy as CIS coach of the year (1990, 1998), Haylor started his career at Western in 1984, and during his tenure, the Mustangs reached five national finals, claiming the Vanier Cup in 1989 and 1994, and played in 13 OUA title games.
Four Mustangs captured the Hec Crighton Trophy as CIS football player of the year during Haylor’s illustrious coaching career, including Andy Fantuz in 2005, Tim Tindale in 1991 and 1993, and Blake Marshall in 1986. Two of his pupils were CIS defensive MVPs, one was named the top lineman in the nation, and two more claimed CIS rookie-of-the-year honours.
Haylor is an active contributor and one of the original architects for the National Coaching Certification Program (NCCP) and was instrumental in developing Football Canada’s Long-Term Athlete Development program.
Haylor has also been a keen advocate in internationalizing the sport of football, taking his Mustangs teams overseas to play Japan in the 90s.
In 2007, he had the Larry Haylor Recruitment Scholarship Fund created in his honour, with over to $250,000 committed from a number of donors. Haylor remains in his role as a professor at Western.
A native of Prince Albert, Sask., Haylor lives in London with his wife Judy and has sons Matt and Jordan and daughter Jennifer.
Calgary Dinos (CIS)
Blake Nill was appointed the fifth head coach in Dinos history on Feb. 23, 2006.An alumnus of the University of Calgary, Nill played football for the Dinos from 1980 through 1982 before turning professional with Montreal in 1983. He was selected 19th overall in the CFL draft that same season, and he played in the CFL from 1983-88 with Montreal, Hamilton and Winnipeg.
A native of Hanna, Alberta, Nill has 25 years of football experience as an athlete and as a coach.Nill joined the Dinos after coaching at Saint Mary’s University in Halifax, Nova Scotia. While coaching the Saint Mary’s Huskies, he posted a regular season record of 49 wins and 15 losses (77%) and post-season record of 12 wins and five losses (71%). During that time the Huskies were Vanier Cup Champions in 2001 and 2002 and were finalists on two other occasions. He coached the Huskies to a record six consecutive Atlantic University Sport Championships (1999-2004).
Nill won the Frank Tindall Trophy as Canadian Interuniversity Sport Coach of the Year in 1999 and was a finalist in 2000, 2001, and 2003.He is actively involved in the Canadian University Football Coaches Association (CUFCA), serving as President for several seasons. Blake was instrumental in the implementation of the interlocking schedule between the Atlantic University Sport and the Quebec conferences.
Nill started his coaching career in August 1992 as the Defensive Coordinator for St. Francis Xavier, a position he held until joining Saint Mary’s in February 1998. From April 1990 through July 1992 Nill served as a youth care worker in Montreal and Calgary, with the Shawbridge Youth Centre and the Alberta Solicitor General, respectively.
Also, Nill served as a guest coach with the Calgary Stampeders in 1997 and 1998, the Ottawa Renegades in 2002 and 2003, and the Edmonton Eskimos in 2007. In addition he served as a member of the coaching staff for the Canadian Under-19 team at the Global World Football Challenge held in conjunction with Super Bowl XLI in Florida in January 2007 and coached the linebackers for Team Canada’s entry at the IFAF World Junior Football Championships in Canton, Ohio in July 2009.
Blake and his wife, Maura, have two children: Taylor – a receiver for the Dinos – and Bryce.
Greg Marshall is one of the brightest minds in Canadian football with a winning track record at both the professional and amateur level.
Currently the head coach with the Western Mustangs football team which competes in Canadian Interuniversity Sport and Ontario University Athletics conferences, Marshall has won national titles as both a player and a coach. He is in his fourth season as head coach at Western.
As a player with the Mustangs from 1978-1981, Marshall won the Hec Crighton trophy as the nation’s top player in 1980, helping the Mustangs to three straight Yates Cup OUA titles as a gritty fullback. He also was named the OUA’s most valuable player in 1980, and won both the Dalt White Trophy as Yates Cup MVP and Bow Maury L. Van Vliet Trophy as the Bowl MVP in 1981. He is a two-time OUA all-star and two-time All-Canadian selection . He was drafted by the Edmonton Eskimos of the Canadian Football League (CFL), earning a Grey Cup ring in 1982. But his professional career was cut short by a devastating knee injury.
As a coach in the CIS, Marshall has amassed a 78-28-2 record with the Mustangs and McMaster Marauders over 10 years, winning six Yates Cups in the process and reaching the Vanier Cup in 2008 with Western. He began his collegiate coaching days serving as the assistant coach to Larry Haylor at Western in 1984, and he was promoted to offensive coordinator in 1992, a position he held until 1996.
At the professional level, Marshall was named as the 2004 Canadian Football League coach of the year. Hired on by the Hamilton Tiger-Cats of the CFL on Dec. 12, 2003, Marshall was the first Canadian-born head coach in the history of their organization and the first-ever coach to make the jump directly from the Canadian university football ranks to become a head coach in the CFL. The rookie head coach had a record of 9-8-1 in 2004, earning the team its first playoff berth in three years.
Marshall served as the offensive line coach for the Global Junior team in 2007 and was be the offensive line coach for Team Canada’s entry at the U.S.A. vs. the World game as part of Super Bowl week in Florida. He lives in London, Ont., with his wife Joan and sons Donnie, Brian and Tommy.
Special Teams Coordinator and RBs
Brian Towriss has been a coach with the Saskatchewan Huskies’ football program for 29 seasons, starting as an assistant coach under Val Schneider in 1980 before taking over the team as head coach in 1984. He spent four seasons as a defensive lineman for the Huskies from 1974-77 and was named a conference all-star in 1974.
The Moose Jaw, Sask., native has led Saskatchewan to three Vanier Cup titles, 11 Hardy Cup titles (Canada West conference champion) and nine Vanier Cup appearances. He is a seven-time Canada West coach of the year and once was named CIS coach of the year. To date, his regular season record stands at 125-74-1 and playoff record at 30-13 (entering 2010 season).
Towriss joined an elite group in 2007 when he was handed Saskatchewan’s highest honour by the Government of Saskatchewan, the Order of Merit, which recognizes citizens who have made a significant contribution to the province and its citizens.
Jeff Cummins began his coaching career at Acadia on defence and will bring an aggressive style that won 2005 and 2006 conference championships.
Cummins captured his second Atlantic University Sport (AUS) football championship in a row in 2006 with a 32-24 win over the Saint Mary's Huskies. In 2005, the Axemen were crowned AUS champions with a 69-6 win over St. Francis Xavier and that same season, Cummins was named the AUS coach of the year for the second straight season.
As head coach of the Axemen for the last six seasons, Cummins has accumulated 27 wins and 28 losses including post-season games He also served as Team Canada’s defensive line coach for the 2009 IFAF World Championship in Canton, Ohio.
As a defensive end and tackle, Cummins played in the Canadian Football League on various teams including Las Vegas, Ottawa, Toronto and finishing on the 1999 Grey Cup Champions Hamilton Tiger Cats. He graduated from the University of Oregon in 1992.
A native of Torrance, California, Jeff has made Wolfville, Nova Scotia, home with his wife Karen, son Joshua and daughter Sydney.
Saint Mary’s Huskies
QBs and Receivers
Steve Sumarah is the head coach, offensive coordinator and quarterbacks coach at Saint Mary’s University in Halifax, Nova Scotia. He has been coaching in the Atlantic University Sport conference for the past 17 years. He has been the Head Coach at Saint Mary’s University for the last four seasons (2006-2009), compiling a regular season record of 24 - 7, with three AUS championships, one Uteck Bowl championship and three AUS coach of the year awards.
In 2009, he became the third Saint Mary's football coach to receive the Frank Tindall Award for the CIS football coach of the year, guiding the Huskies to capture the AUS title for the third year in a row.
Sumarah was also the offensive coordinator for two Vanier Cup championships and four appearances.
Along with coaching at Saint Mary’s, Sumarah has also coached at St. Francis Xavier and at five CFL camps.
Sumarah is from Halifax and is the first Huskies’ head coach from Nova Scotia. He lives with his partner Amanda and daughter Brooke and her two children Ryan and Brianna.
Pat Tracey is a defensive wizard, having helped the Queen’s Gaels to an impressive 63-36 (.636%) record over his 10 years with Queen’s. Last year, he guided the Gaels defence to a Vanier Cup championship, finishing with the top defence in the OUA. This year, he enters his 11th season with Queen’s and his 10th as Defensive Coordinator.
Prior to his arrival at Queen’s in 2000, he had an impressive 14-year run as an assistant coach at the University of Guelph, winning the Yates Cup in 1992 and 1996. As a player, he was a defensive back for the Gryphons for five years where he won the 1984 Vanier Cup, team captain in 1986 and was named to the 1980’s “Team of the Decade” setting a school record for most games played in a career (51).
Tracey also served under CFL legend Ron Lancaster as a Special Teams Coordinator with the Hamilton Tiger-Cats in 1998. That year, the Tiger-Cats were Eastern Conference Champions and Grey Cup finalists. He has played a key role at the annual CIS East-West Bowl, coordinating the defence for team-east in 2004 and the special teams units in 05, 07 and 08.
He also has significant experience coaching up-and-coming CIS athletes having coordinated the special teams units for the U-19 gold-medal-winning Team Canada at the 2007 NFL Global Football Championships and captured four consecutive medals at the Canadian U-17 Canada Cups as Defensive Coordinator for Team Ontario – East.