Ravens Coaches

C.B. (Tiny) Hermann - 1945

Tiny Herman, 1939

The Ravens' first head coach, C.B. (Tiny) Hermann, began the tradition of Carleton University football coaching excellence. Tiny, a former Ottawa Rough Riders star, pushed the new Ravens football team to its limits. Tiny was known for his tough-love method of coaching, once forcing players to practice five hours a night for an entire week after various infractions by team members. Tiny was a well-respected member of the Rough Riders and the larger Ottawa community, playing in the 1936, 1939 and 1940 Grey Cup games, winning league scoring title in 1937 and serving as an officer in both the RCMP and the Royal Canadian Navy. Though Tiny was with the Ravens for only one year, he led the Ravens to a 1-2-1 season and, more importantly, established a firm foundation for Ravens football.

 

 

Des Bloom - 1946

Des Bloom, a former referee and umpire, replaced Tiny Herman as head coach in 1946. He refereed Carleton's first winning game against Macdonald College in 1945. Bloom, like his predecessor, volunteered his time as a coach, receiving no monetary reward for his efforts. Bloom was forced to work with scarce resources, such as an insufficient number of uniforms for the players. However, he managed to lead the team to a respectable 1-2-0 season.

 

Arnie Morrison - 1947-1948

The young Ravens football team experienced the leadership of three different head coaches in the first three years of its existence. The third coach, a Riders teammate of Hermann's, was a former football superstar. While being the quarterback for the Riders during their 1936 Grey Cup win, Morrison was awarded the Jeff Russel Memorial Trophy as the nation's most outstanding athlete. He also played as quarterback on the all-Canadian all-star football team. In 1937, Morrison was the captain of the Rough Riders. Arnie brought consistency to the team, becoming the first Ravens coach to stay for more than one season. Arnie was also the first coach to petition the president of the college for more resources.

 

Arnie McWatters - 1949-1953

Arnie McWatters, ca. 1950

Coach Arnie McWatters came to the Ravens after coaching the team's main rival, the University of Ottawa Gee-Gees. This former Rough Rider was the first coach to utilize the offensive "T Formation" in Ottawa. Coaching the Ravens during the early 1950s was difficult. Due to low player turnout, Arnie often had to make last-minute position changes to the line-up. Though McWatters battled to make things work, he left the Ravens in 1951. When intercollegiate football returned to Carleton in 1952, Arnie came back to spearhead the rebuilding of the team. He spent four seasons with the Ravens and by the end of his tenure, he could count two notable achievements: he had assisted in the rebirth of the Ravens and he had led the team to beat the Gee-Gees for the first time, in 1953.

 

 

 

 Bill Stanton - 1954-1956

Bill Stanton, ca. 1952

Bill Stanton, a quiet man from the southern United States, was the fourth former Rough Rider to be head coach of the Ravens. Stanton took the foundations that McWatters laid and led the Ravens through two fairly successful seasons. After games he would tell players in clear, quiet language exactly where they had gone wrong and how to fix it. In 1954, for the frrst time, Carleton was in contention for a league title. It was during Stanton's short tenure that the first two Panda games were played and won by the Ravens.

 

 

 

 

 

Ed Yablonski - 1957-1958

Ed Yablonski continued the long tradition of former Rough Riders as coaches. He started off playing college football at the University of Detroit, then moved to Ottawa to play backfield for the Rough Riders. He was a quiet and effective coach. Yablonski stayed with the Ravens as assistant coach to Keith Harris when he came on as head coach in '59.

 
Keith Harris - 1959-1968

Keith Harris

Keith Harris, a Toronto native, was the Ravens' longest-serving head coach. For almost 10 years, it was Harris's vision and strategy that led the football club. This Queen's graduate started out as head coach of the football team at Albert College in Belleville, Ont., then moved back to Queen's as a coach on the Golden Gaels' staff. When Harris became head coach at Carleton, he was also the assistant director of Athletics. Early in his coaching career at Carleton, Harris realized that it was not only the small stature of the Carleton team that was working against them, but also the defeatist attitude of the discouraged players. By utilizing plays that caused team members to use their agility and brains as opposed to bulk and muscle, Keith was eventually able to increase morale and make the Ravens an attractive team. Coach Harris also set standards for players who were trying out for the team. Before he arrived, almost anyone who tried out was automatically on board due to low participation.

The team Coach Harris built produced numerous stars and made the conference playoffs in the Ontario Intercollegiate Football Conference in 1962.  He went on to assist the new head coach, Kim McCuaig, until 1974, and served as president of both the Ontario Universities Athletic Association and the Canadian Interuniversity Athletics Union, as well as Ontario-Quebec Interuniversity Football Conference Commissioner. For his tremendous contributions to football and athletics in general, in 1996 the field where the Ravens played countless games on the Carleton University campus was named "Keith Hams Stadium."

Kim McCuaig - 1969-1975

Kim McCuaig was one of two former Ravens to head the coaching staff of Carleton's football team. Kim excelled on the Ravens team for four years as one of inter-collegiate football's best pass catching ends, according to Coach Harris. Before returning to coach the Ravens, McCuaig was drafted by the Toronto Argonauts. Coach McCuaig was also the assistant director of athletics during his years as head coach. Strengthening the Ravens defence was an important goal for him. By setting up high school visitation days where students would meet both professors and football players, more and more local high school grads began to see the Ravens as an attractive team. McCuaig understood the bond that forms among football team members, and was one of the founding members of the Old Crow Society, the Ravens' football alumni group. McCuaig also started the first sports medicine clinic in Canada with the Ravens' football team doctors.

 

 Bryan Kealey - 1976-1981

Bryan Kealey

During the late 1960s and early 1970s, Bryan Kealey coached the Ravens hockey team; however, he had deep football roots. A graduate of St. Patrick's College, Kealey was head coach of the football team at St. Patrick's for two years, as well as coach for St. Pat's High School. Kealey's vision for the Ravens in 1976 was straightforward: "The kind of game I like is a very simple, aggressive game and I'll push, push, push on the fundamentals." Kealey surrounded himself with a superb coaching staff, which enabled him to bring about dramatic improvement, especially defensively, over the six years he was head coach.

 

 

 

 

 Wayne (Ace) Powell Jr. - 1982-1988

Ace Powell guided the Carleton Ravens to their two most successful seasons 1985 and 1986. His football experience began at a young age, as Powell Sr. was a Rough Rider in the 1940s. A west-end Ottawa native, Powell Jr. played as tackle for both Ottawa U and Queen's, and helped build three successful football programs, at Sir Robert Borden High School in Ottawa, the University of Ottawa and the Ottawa Sooners (championship teams 1975 and 1979). Coach Powell's main goal in the first couple of years as head coach at Carleton was to establish a winning attitude. Powell, who "lives and breathes football," had a very tough training technique and introduced the now common mandatory weight-training program to Ravens troops. He balanced his tough regimen by building team tradition, with things like a pregame "Zulu war dance" where Coach Powell would scream "WHO ARE WE???" and receive a thunderous "RAVENS!" in response from his players. He was nominated for the O-QIFC Frank Tindall Coach of the Year award in the 1985 championship season. Powell was a highly-respected coach, who helped Carleton football fans and players alike to begin to believe in their football team once again.

 

Gary Shaver - 1989-1992

Gary Shaver was no stranger to the Ravens before taking over as head coach in 1989: he was a Ravens linebacker for five years before becoming special teams coach for six years. Shaver was also the assistant director of aquatics in the Department of Athletics at Carleton. Shaver's main goals as head coach were to "make the playoffs and establish credibility in our program." He made it his business to counsel and assist Ravens with their scholastic responsibilities as well as on-field play. When Coach Shaver stepped down from the head coach position in 1992, he stayed on as the full-time assistant coach, where he continued to focus on administration and academic counselling.

 

 

 

 Donn Smith - 1993-1998

Don Smith, 1998

Donn Smith, the final Ravens football head coach, had an impressive resume before joining the Ravens for the '93 season. The former centre was the seventhround draft pick of the Kansas City Chiefs (NFL) and won two Grey Cups with the Rough Riders. He received three Schenley Award nominations as the outstanding Canadian in the CFL, was selected as an all-star three times and led the Ottawa Sooners to a national junior championship. As would be expected, Smith exuded confidence, which he transferred to the players through fundamental skills. Coach Smith was voted the O-QIFC Coach of the Year in 1996. Smith was also the offensive line coach for the Winnipeg Blue Bombers until 2005.