Popp Out, Pinball In – all change in Toronto

It’s a case of all change in Toronto. That’s because GM Jim Popp has been relived of his duties and replaced by Michael ‘Pinball’ Clemons.

Popp was hired by the Toronto Argonauts in 2017. He signed a three-year contract which ran out at the end of the 2019 season.

The high point was a 9-9 team that won the 2017 Grey Cup. However since then things have not gone well for the Boatmen. A 4-14 season in 2018 has been followed by going 2-12 so far this year.

A dispiriting display in a 55-8 defeat to the BC Lions this week appears to have been the final straw.

The ‘New’ Man in Toronto

The New man in charge was announced earlier today. This is a new role for Clemons but that doesn’t mean he hasn’t been in and around the Argos in lots of ways.

Clemons spent 12 seasons with the Argos as a running back. As we have featured before ‘Mr Argos’ had a legendary career. Clemons recorded 25,438 combined yards with the Argos, a CFL record, while winning three Grey Cup championships as a player.

Clemons has been the head coach of the Argos twice. Over that span he had a 67-54-1 record and won a Grey Cup in 2004. He was also the Argos team president from November 2001 to September 2002 and chief executive officer (December 2007 to November 2008) before being appointed vice chair of the team in May 2009, a role he held until this appointment.

A clear focus in all the statements coming out so far around this is about a change in culture. Fans of the Double Blue will watch this one unfold with interest.

Banner Image: New Toronto GM Michael Clemons. image from

Article written by:

Chris Lawton joined the team in 2017 and has been writing about the CFL ever since. He originally started following the NFL with the 'first wave' of fans when it was shown on Channel 4 in the 1980's. He has been a keen supporter of the Miami Dolphins since 1983. Chris first encountered the CFL in 2016 and instantly fell in love with the Canadian game. He has been writing about the CFL from the inception of Ninety-Nine Yards. You can find him on twitter as @CFLfanUK

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

%d bloggers like this: