Scott Flory

Flory's story comes full circle with the Huskies

It is still a month away, but Scott Flory is already counting down the days until spring camp.

By James Shewaga

The new head coach of the University of Saskatchewan Huskies football team will kick off a new era when his team takes to the turf at Griffiths Stadium in PotashCorp Park for spring camp on May 4-7. Flory’s first spring camp was 23 years ago back in 1994 as a raw rookie recruit for the Huskies.

“Spring camp will be the first big thing when we can really turn the page and move forward, so I am looking forward to it,” said Flory, who was named Huskies coach on March 13, taking over from Brian Towriss who stepped down after 33 seasons at the helm of the program. “I am excited to get started and to bring in some philosophical changes on how we approach football and how we structure things. It’s exciting and it’s going to be new for a lot of our players and I think they are looking forward to it, too.”

The 40-year-old Flory spent the past three seasons serving as the Huskies’ offensive co-ordinator under Towriss, who was the winningest university football coach in the country. Flory played under Towriss when the Huskies won Vanier Cup national championships in 1996 and 1998, before he embarked on a brilliant 15-year professional career in which he was named a nine-time Canadian Football League (CFL) all-star and won three Grey Cups.

Flory, who served as head of the CFL Players Association for three years after retiring as a player, was hired as Huskies head coach following an extensive search that included applicants from across North America. The selection committee was chaired by Chad London, the dean of the College of Kinesiology, and featured former Huskie and current CFLer Patrick Neufeld, Football Canada president Kim Wudrick, Huskie athletic director Basil Hughton and U of S women’s basketball coach Lisa Thomaidis.

In the end, London said Flory was the unanimous pick of the selection committee, to give the historic program a fresh new start.

“Scott has a vision for what this program needs, and the vision that he brought to the table and the elements to execute that vision, set him apart,” said London. “He knows this community, he knows how to develop student-athletes, he has a brilliant football mind and he brings all that you look for in a head coach of Huskie football.”

A native of Regina, Flory played five seasons with the Huskies from 1994 to 1998 and was twice named a CIS All-Canadian, while also earning

his Bachelor of Science in civil engineering. Flory went on to be picked in the third round of the 1998 CFL draft and spent 15 seasons with the Montreal Alouettes, twice earning the league’s most outstanding offensive lineman award.

Now he’s back where it all began, heading the program that propelled him to pro football.

“Absolutely this is my dream job,” said Flory, whose wife Natasha is also a U of S alumna in computer science. “Early in my playing days, coaching was definitely a path that I wanted to go down one day.

“I am just honoured and privileged to be here as an alumnus. This program has given so much to me and it’s my opportunity now to give back and to do my best for all those guys in our locker room and all of our coaches, and to make the university and the community proud.

Huskie Highlights

  • The U of S men’s hockey team earned a silver medal at the national championship in Fredericton, N.B., falling 5-3 in the final to New Brunswick on March 19.  Huskies coach Dave Adolph was honoured as the U Sports coach of the year, Jordon Cooke was named goalie of the year and defenceman Jesse Forsberg was a second-team All-Canadian.
  • Despite graduating four of five starters from their 2016 national championship squad, the U of S women’s basket- ball team won the Canada West title and went on to finish sixth at nationals in Victoria on March 11. Sabine Dukate was named a second-team All-Canadian, while fellow Huskies guard Libby Epoch made the all-rookie team.
  • The U of S men’s basketball squad came up short in its drive to nationals, but forward Shane Osayande was named a second-team All-Canadian.
  • Huskies track and field star Astrid Nyame raced to a gold medal in the 60-metre hurdles at the U Sports national championships in Edmonton on March 10.
  • While they didn’t advance to nationals, Huskies men’s volleyball setter Derek Epp cracked the Canadian all-rookie team.