Gryphons hire Dennis McPhee as DC

GUELPH, Ont. – The University of Guelph’s Department of Athletics announced on Friday (February 15) that Dennis McPhee has been named Defensive Coordinator of the Gryphon football program.

Dennis McPhee arrives at Guelph with 16 years of CFL coaching experience in Hamilton
Dennis McPhee arrives at Guelph with 16 years of CFL coaching experience in Hamilton

McPhee, a Hamilton native, boasts 35 years of coaching experience, including 16 years in the professional ranks as a Defensive Line Coach with the CFL’s Hamilton Tiger-Cats. McPhee also has 19 years of coaching experience at the Canadian university level, having held head coaching roles on two separate occasions, leading the University of Waterloo’s football program for five seasons (2007-2011) after having served as head coach of the St. Francis Xavier X-Men for two seasons (2002-2003).

“Dennis McPhee is a well-respected coach at both the professional and university level whose reputation speaks for itself,” says Gryphon head coach Ryan Sheahan.

Dennis McPhee served as head coach of the Waterloo Warriors from 2007-2011
McPhee served as head coach of the Waterloo Warriors (2007-2011)

“Above all else, Dennis is a good man, a good mentor, and a caring person who always wants the best for his players. I’m thrilled to have him join our staff and support our mission to contend for a national championship.”

For McPhee, this marks his second stint as a defensive coach at the University of Guelph. From 1990-1993, McPhee served as the Gryphons linebackers coach, helping mold one of the greatest defensive units in program history, led by star linebackers Steve McKee and Mike O’Shea. In 1992, McPhee was part of the Gryphon coaching staff that led the Gryphons to what was then the second Yates Cup title in school history.

“It’s an honour and a privilege to be back,” says the 60-year-old Hamilton native.

McPhee served as Guelph's LB coach during their 1992 Yates Cup championship season
McPhee served as Guelph’s LB coach during their 1992 Yates Cup championship season

“I’m excited to once again be working with student-athletes where you really have a chance to make a difference in a young man’s life. There have been some wonderful things going on with the Gryphon football program in recent years and there’s no doubt that there are some talented players on the roster. We just have to make sure that the effort and the work ethic is where it needs to be.”

In his 16 years as a defensive coach in the professional ranks, McPhee put together a lengthy list of accomplishments, highlighted by a Grey Cup championship with Hamilton in 1999.

McPhee (right) with Canadian Football Hall of Famer Joe Montford (left)
McPhee (right) with Canadian Football Hall of Famer Joe Montford (left)

Canadian Football Hall of Famer and legendary Ticats defensive end Joe Montford was named the CFL’s Most Outstanding Defensive Player on three separate occasions (1998, 2000 and 2001) with coach McPhee overseeing the Hamilton defensive front throughout each of those years.

As a student-athlete, McPhee was a two-sport star at Saint Mary’s University in Halifax, competing at the varsity level for the Huskies in both football and hockey. Following his football career at SMU, where he was a five-year starter, McPhee attended training camp with the Toronto Argonauts in 1982 and later spent time on the Edmonton Eskimos practice roster. Dennis and his wife Joanne Evans, a former Female Athlete of the Year at Saint Mary’s, have three children (Macklin, Caelan and Catherine).


Dennis McPhee Coaching Bio:

2019: Guelph Gryphons (Defensive Coordinator)
2013-2018: Hamilton Tiger-Cats (Defensive Line Coach)
2012: Western Mustangs (Defensive Coordinator)
2007-2011: Waterloo Warriors (Head Coach)
2004-2006: Hamilton Tiger-Cats (Defensive Line Coach)
2002-2003: St. FX X-Men (Head Coach)
1995-2001: Hamilton Tiger-Cats (Defensive Line & Linebackers Coach)
1994: McMaster Marauders (Defensive Coordinator)
1990-1993: Guelph Gryphons (Linebackers Coach)
1989: St. FX X-Men (Defensive Backs Coach)
1984-1988: McMaster Marauders (Defensive Line Coach)

 

Source: Guelph Gryphons

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