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Higgins named Alouettes head coach

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According to the Canadian Press, the Montreal Alouettes have named former Calgary Stampeders head coach Tom Higgins as their new head coach.

The selection of Higgins is an interesting one because Alouettes' general manager Jim Popp was not part of the selection process. Popp apparently wanted to remain on as the Alouettes' head coach and general manager, but was overruled by owner Bob Wetenhall. Alouettes' ownership is reporting Popp was not part of choosing a head coach is because Popp was a candidate.

Last season Popp fired Danny Hawkins and named himself the Alouettes head coach after Montreal started 2-3. The Alouettes finished at 8-10 and lost 19-16 to Hamilton in the Eastern Division semi-final.

The future of Popp in Montreal may now be in question if he does not continue to have a strong rapport with Wentenhall. In the last two decades, the Alouettes have had profound success on the football field and Popp has been given much of the credit for his sound managerial decisions.

A year ago at this time, Popp received interest from the Carolina Panthers, Philadelphia Eagles and Indianapolis Colts. It would not be overly surprising if the NFL happened to call again.

Higgins meanwhile coached the Stampeders from 2005-2007 and won the Annis Stukus Trophy for CFL coach of the year in 2005. For the last five years, he has been the CFL's Director of Officiating.

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