BC Lions hire Ed Hervey as GM, Buono to stay on as coach for 2018

Buono will continue as vice-president of football operations

The B.C. Lions hope a major front-office change can turn around the CFL club’s sagging fortunes.

The Lions announced Thursday that former Edmonton Eskimos executive Ed Hervey will take over as the club’s general manager from Wally Buono, who has held the post since 2003. Buono will coach a final season in 2018 to help with the transition and will continue as vice-president of football operations.

The announcement comes after disappointing season that saw the Lions finish last in the CFL West Division at 7-11 with Buono in a dual coach/GM role. But Hervey said Buono’s continued involvement with the team was a selling point when considering the GM job.

“I don’t think I would have made the commitment to come here if he wasn’t committed to being the head coach,” Hervey said at his introductory press conference. “Number two, with Wally as vice-president he gives me someone to work with (and) bounce things off of. I’m still a young general manager, and his wealth of knowledge and experience … who better to have around?”

Hervey was general manager of the Edmonton Eskimos for three seasons from 2013 to 2016, building a Grey Cup-winning team in 2015. But he was criticized in Edmonton for restricting media access to Eskimos players, and when he was fired on April 7, 2017, Edmonton president Len Rhodes cited a “philosophy in the way we do business” as part of the reason.

Hervey denied obstructing media access while with Edmonton.

“The locker room has always been the coach’s decision and will always be the coach’s decision, and will be supported by the organization,” Hervey said.

Buono is the CFL’s all-time leader with 273 coaching wins and had served as the Lions GM since 2003.

After an encouraging 5-2 start in 2017, injuries and inconsistent play plagued the Lions the rest of the way as they spiralled to a 2-9 finish and missed the CFL playoffs for the first time since 1996.

“My time with the Lions has been memorable to say the least, but right now my sole focus is working with Ed to build a championship team in 2018,” Buono said in a statement. ”This past season was tremendously frustrating for all of us, but today’s announcement is the kind of change I believe our organization needs, our fans want to see and something we can build on moving forward.”

The Canadian Press

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

B.C. Green Party leader Sonia Furstenau outlines her party's climate action platform at Nanaimo's Vancouver Island Conference Centre earlier this month. (News Bulletin file photo)
Green leader Furstenau declared victor in her home riding on Vancouver Island

Cowichan Valley voters elect freshly minted party leader for her second term

John Horgan has been re-elected the MLA for Langford-Juan de Fuca. (File-Black Press)
Horgan trounces challengers to be re-elected in his Vancouver Island riding

MLA has represented constituency of Langford-Juan de Fuca and its predecessors since 2005

Firefighters and RCMP are on scene at a fire on Douglas Street. (Jocelyn Doll - Revelstoke Review)
PHOTOS: Firefighters battling blaze on Douglas Street

RCMP are also on scene and blocking off access to the street

COVID-19. (Image courtesy CDC)
Interior Health reports 18 COVID-19 cases, highest daily count since July

The total of COVID-19 cases in the region is now at 662

A Kelowna clinic decided to immunize their patients in a drive-thru flu clinic earlier this month. (Twila Amato - Black Press Media)
Interior Health anticipates increase in flu vaccinations this season

Some 300,000 doses of flu vaccine ready for distribution across Southern Interior

B.C. provincial health officer Dr. Bonnie Henry gives a daily briefing on COVID-19 cases at an almost empty B.C. Legislature press theatre in Victoria, B.C., on March 25, 2020. (Don Craig/B.C. government)
B.C. sees 223 new COVID-19 cases, now 2,009 active

Two new care home outbreaks in Surrey, Burnaby

Canada’s Chief Public Health Officer Theresa Tam responds to a question during a news conference Friday October 23, 2020 in Ottawa. Canada’s top physician says she fears the number of COVID-19 hospitalizations and deaths may increase in the coming weeks as the second wave continues to drive the death toll toward 10,000. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Adrian Wyld
Canada’s top doctor warns severe illness likely to rise, trailing spike in COVID-19 cases

Average daily deaths from virus reached 23 over the past seven days, up from six deaths six weeks ago

Voters are saying they felt safe voting in person despite the current pandemic. (Phil McLachlan - Capital News)
Central Okanagan voters talk about their pandemic election experience

Despite an election taking place during COVID-19, residents said they felt safe voting in person

Cole Collingwood casts his mock ballot at Vernon’s Mission Hill Elementary School ahead of the provincial election Oct. 24, 2020. (Brendan Shykora - Morning Star)
PHOTOS: Okanagan students cast mock election ballots

At Mission Hill Elementary, the election is a chance to learn about the democratic process

Thanks to efforts by a Kelowna shelter and Elections BC, anyone who wishes to can vote in the 2020 BC Provincial Election, even if they don’t have a fixed address. (THE CANADIAN PRESS/Darryl Dyck)
Kelowna group ensures people experiencing homelessness can vote

Shelter supervisor says voting ‘a fundamental right’ even for those without a fixed address

Join Black Press Media and Do Some Good

Pay it Forward program supports local businesses in their community giving

(Big White Ski Resort photo)
Big White receives 21 cm of snow in 24 hours

Resort’s snow base 41 cm deep, one month until opening day

The deer were allegedly shot within Princeton town limits, late at night. Black Press File Photo.
Armed man, in full camouflage, allegedly shoots deer in downtown Princeton

‘The list of charges goes on and on,’ said RCMP Sgt. Rob Hughes

Most Read