Stingers make multiple staff changes heading into new year

staff changes
Brad Collinson will take over as head coach of the football team. Archive photo by Alex Hutchins.

Two former student-athletes hired for coaching positions

There are new faces on the Concordia Stingers coaching staff this season, as the organization had a busy summer making staff changes.

The Stingers’s adventurous search for a football head coach came to an end this summer. Last January, head coach Mickey Donovan left the team to join the Montreal Alouettes of the Canadian Football League (CFL) as a special teams coordinator. His brother Pat took over as interim head coach, but left in May to join his brother with the Alouettes, as the director of football operations.

This left the football team without a coach in late-May, but after Pat’s departure, it was quickly announced that former Stinger Brad Collinson would take over as head coach. Athletics director D’Arcy Ryan said he knew about Collinson’s history as a coach, and had included him as a candidate when Mickey left in January, so it wasn’t a hard decision.

“When the time came [to find a new head coach], it was an easy phone call to make to discuss the position with him over a cup of coffee,” Ryan said.

Collinson played for the Stingers as an offensive lineman from 2000 to 2002, and captained the team. He played one season with the Alouettes in 2003 before going back to Concordia as a part-time assistant coach in 2004, and stayed on staff with the Stingers until 2010.

“We always want to be competitive,” Ryan added on what he expects from Collinson. “But he’s inheriting someone’s team and didn’t have time to recruit, so we’re looking for a culture change.”

staff changes
The women’s soccer team will have a new coach for the first time in 16 years. Archive photo by Alex Hutchins.

The Stingers also hired another former player to lead the women’s rugby team. Jocelyn Barrieau last played for the Stingers in 2011, and has been the skills coach for men’s team since 2013. She coached the Dawson Blues women’s rugby team to four championships from 2007 to 2011. As head coach, she says she wants to focus on her athletes’ academics.

“The first goal is to ensure a 100 per cent graduation rate,” she told the Stingers’s website after she was hired in July.

Finally, Jorge Sanchez has left his position as head coach of the women’s soccer team after 16 years. Instead of getting a direct replacement for Sanchez, Greg Sutton, who’s been the men’s head coach since 2013, will be in control of both teams. Ryan said the idea to have Sutton as master coach came up about a year ago, and after candidates for the women’s coaching position dropped out, the Stingers approached Sutton to take control of both teams.

Not only does Ryan want Sutton to develop players, but also management. “We’re looking for Sutton to really grow his staff and develop assistant coaches,” Ryan said.

Main photo by Alex Hutchins. 

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