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Mississauga – The Toronto Argonauts Football Club announced today that Ed O’Neil will join the team as Linebackers Coach. An internationally successful coach, Ed O’Neil has almost 30 years of experience. He has served on teams at almost every level of competition, from the NFL to NFLE to the CFL. O’Neil spent the 2007 season as defensive coordinator for the Hamilton Tiger-Cats after spending the previous eight seasons in NFL Europa.
Head Coach Bart Andrus remarked, “I’m pleased to have Ed O’Neil join our staff here at the Toronto Argonauts. Ed comes to us with a vast amount of coaching experience at the professional level. He has worn a lot of hats as an assistant coach and was Defensive Coordinator for Frankfurt when they defeated my Amsterdam Admirals in the 2006 World Bowl. I’ve gotten to know Ed over the years and feel he will have a positive effect on our football team.”
In Europe, O’Neil was no stranger to the big game. He coached in five World Bowls, winning two with the Frankfurt Galaxy in 1999 & 2006. O’Neil served as linebackers coach for the Galaxy from 1999–2000 and defensive coordinator from 2004-06. In 2006, O’Neil’s defence allowed the fewest points in the league (147) and the second-fewest net yards (1,728). Prior to joining Frankfurt the second time, he was the Defensive Line Coach/Special Teams Coordinator for the Rhein Fire, and reached the championship game in back-to-back seasons (2002, 2003).
“Coming back to the CFL is a big reward for me. It is a great league and an exciting game. I learned a lot from my first experience in Hamilton and can apply that knowledge to this new situation,” commented O’Neil. “To work with Bart and this group of coaches, who all worked together so well in Europe on the same team and against each other, is tremendous. I am especially glad to be joining the Argonauts as its rich history, its wins, and its hall of famers give you goosebumps. I can’t wait to get started and am more thrilled than you can imagine.”
Defensive Coordinator Pete Kuharchek stated, “Ed was my right hand man at the Rhein Fire where two of the three years we were there together, we went to the World Bowl. When he left for greener pastures, I sure missed him. He is very organized, detailed and hardworking. He brings a lot to the table. He is a great person and football coach.”
O’Neil coached for 16 years in the U.S. college system. He spent three seasons as the defensive coordinator for the University of Buffalo. Prior to that, he spent 10 years as the special teams/tight ends/linebackers coach for Rutgers University (1984-1993). He also spent one year as linebackers coach for the University of Indiana (1983) and began his coaching career as linebackers coach for Eastern Michigan (1982).
O’Neil enjoyed a 7-year NFL career as a player, seeing action in over 100 games after being drafted 8th overall by the Detroit Lions in the 1974. He graduated from Penn State with a degree in Health and Physical Education.