Offensive coordinator Jon Behie leaves McMaster football program

Scott Hastie
November 24, 2016
This article was published more than 2 years ago.
Est. Reading Time: 2 minutes

As Hamilton prepares for the Vanier Cup game at Tim Hortons Field on Nov. 26, the biggest U Sports football news of the week comes from the McMaster University campus.

Jon Behie, offensive coordinator and former associate head coach, has left the Marauder football program. The McMaster athletic department announced the departure in a press release.

"I've been a part of the McMaster football program for 15 years, both as a student-athlete and a coach. I've made some great friends and have amazing memories, but it's time for me to move on," said Behie.  "I owe a lot of who I am to McMaster and this is difficult, but it is in the best interest of the football program, and I wish for nothing more than continued success for the Marauders."

Behie started as an assistant coach in 2007. Under Behie, McMaster fielded some of the most explosive offences in the country. Since 2010, the Marauders were no lower than third in points per game average, until this year where they finished fifth. The Burlington, Ont. native played football and basketball for McMaster as an undergraduate.

This marks the third significant coaching departure in 2016. Stefan Ptaszek left his position as head coach of McMaster football in May to be the offensive coordinator for the Hamilton Tiger-Cats. Mac then hired Greg Knox from the Winnipeg Blue Bombers. who had been the defensive coordinator for the Marauders when they made Vanier Cup runs in 2011, 2012 and 2014. Prior to Knox being hired, Behie was the associate head coach.

The second coaching change was the resignation of co-defensive coordinator Joe Sardo. Sardo joined the Marauder coaching staff in January 2015, but left after this year's game against the University of Ottawa.

"The structure did not have room for me there," Sardo told the Hamilton Spectator.

Knox took over the defensive duties alongside Mark Forsyth, who has been an assistant coach since 1989.

Future of Mac football

Now, fans of Mac football look ahead, though the future is foggy. Knox will have to address vacancies both on the field and the sidelines. It is unclear if the defensive coordinator position will be filled or if Knox will continue to handle those responsibilities.

The Marauders will have major gaps to fill from a player standpoint. On offence, receiver Danny Vandervoort will likely be selected in the first round of the Canadian Football League draft. Given his skill set and domination at the U Sports level, it would be a surprise to see him return to Mac. Quarterback Asher Hastings finished his U Sports career. Hastings spent two years playing junior football and three at Mac. His departure means McMaster will be using a new quarterback. Dylan Astrom was the back-up this year, though he only has 19 total career pass attempts in two seasons.

OUA first-team all-star guard Zach Intzandt is out of eligibility, as are receivers Josh Vandeweerd and Max Cameron. Running back Chris Pezzetta finished his career in the Maroon and Grey as well.

Defensively, McMaster waves goodbye to mainstays like safety Keldyn Ahlstedt, defensive end Mike Kashak and linebacker Kyle Fitzsimmons.

This is officially Knox's program now and where it goes from here is one of the most intriguing storylines for Marauder sports fans in recent memory.


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