Wednesday, 25 January 2012

Copeland Retires... Becomes Coach in Hamilton

Jeremaine Copeland has ended his playing career. The 11-year veteran retired today and immediately took a coaching position with the Hamilton Tiger-Cats. Copeland is the team's new Receivers Coach. The Ti-Cats also hired Doug Sams as Quarterbacks Coach and retained Doug Malone as Offensive Line Coach.

The biggest news is obviously Copeland, who is the most well-known of the three. Going over Copeland résumé is unnecessary; everyone knows what he accomplished during his playing career. It's what he can bring as a coach that has the most intrigue.

Copeland is familiar with the two biggest names the Ti-Cats brought to town over the off-season: Head Coach George Cortez and Quarterback Henry Burris.

Copeland was with both in Calgary. Copeland, therefore, knows what Cortez likes to do offensively, and can relay that to the group of Receivers he is working with.

But it is Copeland's familiarity with Henry Burris that might end up paying the most dividends. Copeland played with Burris for five seasons (2005-2009) and both achieved amazing success together. As a coach, Copland can impart his wisdom to the Receivers that will be catching Burris's passes this season. That could prove to be invaluable.

Bringing in Copeland also puts a dent in Hamilton's closest rivals. The Argos are in desperate need of Receiver help, and losing their most veteran guy – even if he was long in the tooth and not an elite Receiver anymore – hurts.

The Cats have almost filled out their coaching staff. The big one left is Special Teams Coordinator, but a few positional coaching vacancies still exist. I'm sure the team is scouring the land looking for the right people.

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