Jim Popp
Toronto Argonauts
File:GM Jim Popp, June 22, 2019.jpg
Popp before a Toronto Argonauts game in 2019.
Born: (1964-12-21) December 21, 1964 (age 55)
Elkin, North Carolina
Career information
Position(s)General Manager
CollegeMichigan State University
High schoolMooresville High School, Mooresville, North Carolina
Career history
As administrator
19921993Saskatchewan Roughriders (Director of Player Personnel)
19941995Baltimore Stallions (GM/Director of Player Personnel)
19962016Montreal Alouettes (VP, GM, Dir. of FB Opts, Dir. of Player Personnel)
2017–presentToronto Argonauts (GM)
As coach
1986Michigan State (Assistant coach)
1987North Carolina (Assistant coach)
1988–1990The Citadel (Assistant coach)
19921993Saskatchewan Roughriders (Wide receivers coach)
2001Montreal Alouettes (HC)
20062007Montreal Alouettes (HC)
2013Montreal Alouettes (HC)
20152016Montreal Alouettes (HC)
As player
1983–1985Michigan State University
Career highlights and awards
Inducted into Sports Hall-of-Fame, 2011 Sports Executive-of-the-Year, 5 Grey Cup Championships,
Awards2011 Sports Executive of the Year
Honours5x Grey Cup champion – (1995, 2002, 2009, 2010, 2017), 11 Grey Cup appearances

James Popp (born December 21, 1964) is the general manager of the Toronto Argonauts football club of the Canadian Football League (CFL). He had previously coached and served as GM of the Montreal Alouettes.

Popp has won five Grey Cups (1995 with the Baltimore Stallions; 2002, 2009, 2010 with the Montreal Alouettes; 2017 with the Toronto Argonauts) and his teams have appeared in 11 Grey Cups.

Montreal AlouettesEdit

Popp was named general manager and director of player personnel of the CFL's Baltimore Stallions in 1994. After two Grey Cup appearances (including one championship), the team was forced out of Baltimore when the NFL started the Baltimore Ravens. Stallions owner Jim Speros decided to relocate his team to Montreal as the second incarnation of the Alouettes.

Popp stayed on as general manager, but found himself having to rebuild the team from almost nothing. While the Alouettes were allowed to reclaim the legacy of the original 1946-86 Alouettes, they were not allowed to keep their history as the Stallions. However, while all of the Stallions players were released from their contracts, Popp re-signed most of the key players from that team.

The Alouettes have been in eight Grey Cup Championships during Popp's tenure (2000, 2002, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2008, 2009 and 2010), capturing the title three times (2002, 2009 and 2010).

Coaching careerEdit

During the 2001 season, Popp took over the team after he and owner Robert Wetenhall fired Rod Rust in the midst of a long losing streak. On October 4, 2006, following the resignation of Don Matthews due to health reasons, Popp again took over as head coach and led the Alouettes to an appearance in the 2006 Grey Cup. Popp continued leading the Alouettes during the 2007 season as well, a rebuilding year which saw the team play with 23 rookies and without their starting quarterback for half the season. Following the 2007 season, Popp decided to step away from the coaching ranks when he hired former NFL coach Marc Trestman as the new head coach of the Alouettes. On August 1, 2013, Popp returned to the sideline after the firing of new head coach Dan Hawkins and was interim head coach for the remainder of the 2013 season. For 2014, Tom Higgins was hired as the Alouettes' head coach and Popp returned to general manager duties full-time. On August 21, 2015, Alouettes ownership relieved Tom Higgins of his coaching duties and brought general manager Popp to the bench for the fourth time.[1] Jim Popp continued on as the head coach for the 2016 CFL season. The first 13 weeks of the season proved to be very tumultuous for the Al's both on the field and in the locker room.[2] Jim Popp only managed to coach Montreal to victories in 3 of first 12 games before relinquishing his responsibilities as head coach to Jacques Chapdelaine who had been serving as a wide receivers coach and special assistant to the offensive coordinator.[3]

Front office executiveEdit

Under Popp's guidance, his teams have reached the playoffs for 20 consecutive seasons, advancing to the Divisional Championship game 15 times. Popp's teams have appeared in 10 Grey Cup championship games, winning the Grey Cup four times.

In January 2012, Popp was a finalist for the vacant Indianapolis Colts General Manager position.[4]

On November 7, 2016, Popp was relieved of his duties as the General Manager of the Montreal Alouettes.

Toronto ArgonautsEdit

Popp was hired as the General Manager of the Toronto Argonauts on February 28, 2017, succeeding Jim Barker.

Popp was successful in convincing the Argonauts ownership in hiring Marc Trestman as the team's head coach. Popp and Trestman won consecutive Grey Cups together in 2009 and 2010.

Despite being hired later during the free agency period, Popp was able to sign former Montreal Alouettes players Bear Woods, Jeff Perrett and S. J. Green. Popp was initially criticized for the moves by the Toronto media, as some felt he was turning the Argonauts into another version of the Alouettes.

Popp's first season in Toronto went above expectations, given the circumstances. The team finished the season at 9-9, which was good enough for first place in the East and a first-round bye in the playoffs. Under his leadership, the Argos defeated the Saskatchewan Roughriders in the Eastern Final, and the Calgary Stampeders in the 105th Grey Cup CFL final.

Popp's second season in Toronto went way below expectations. The team nosedived from winning the Grey Cup a year earlier to finishing the season at 4-14, with an 0-9 record on the road. The team struggled to find consistency at the quarterback position following a season-ending injury to Ricky Ray. Popp traded for James Franklin from the Edmonton Eskimos in the off-season, with the hopes of him being the successor to Ray. Franklin struggled to find his footing and would be replaced by McLeod Bethel-Thompson, who would also struggle at the helm. The team's on-field performance and nosedive in the standings prompted Popp to fire Trestman at the end of the season.

Career highlightsEdit

The 2009 and 2010 Alouettes back-to-back Grey Cup championships were the first back-to-back CFL titles in 13 years. Popp's teams have been some of the most successful in CFL history.

  • The only team to ever win 18 games in a CFL season (Baltimore Stallions – including the final 13 in a row)
  • One of three teams in CFL history to have ever won 12 or more games in six consecutive seasons.
  • Popp is the only General Manager to have won 12 or more games in seven consecutive seasons.

Personal lifeEdit

Popp and his wife Kimberly have six children and reside in Mooresville, North Carolina and North York, Ontario (during CFL season). Popp credits much of his success on the field to his family, especially his father Joe, a former NFL and college coach. Jim and his father share the privilege of being members of the Mooresville (NC) High School Hall of Fame, whose football stadium is named in Joe's honor (Coach Joe Popp Stadium).


Popp was named 2011 Sports Executive of the Year by Sports Media Canada.

CFL recordsEdit

General managerEdit

Team Year Regular Season Post Season
WonLostTiesFinish Won Lost Result
BAL1994 12602nd in East Division 2 1 Lost in 82nd Grey Cup
BAL1995 15301st in South Division 3 0 Won 83rd Grey Cup
MTL1996 12603rd in East Division 1 1 Lost in East Final
MTL1997 13503rd in East Division 1 1 Lost in East Final
MTL1998 12512nd in East Division 1 1 Lost in East Final
MTL1999 12601st in East Division 1 1 Lost in East Final
MTL2000 12601st in East Division 2 1 Lost in 88th Grey Cup
MTL2001 9903rd in East Division 0 1 Lost in East Semi-Final
MTL2002 13501st in East Division 2 0 Won 90th Grey Cup
MTL2003 13501st in East Division 2 1 Lost in 91st Grey Cup
MTL2004 14401st in East Division 1 1 Lost in East Final
MTL2005 10802nd in East Division 2 1 Lost in 93rd Grey Cup
MTL2006 10801st in East Division 1 1 Lost in 94th Grey Cup
MTL2007 81003rd in East Division 0 1 Lost in East Semi-Final
MTL2008 11701st in East Division 1 1 Lost in 96th Grey Cup
MTL2009 15301st in East Division 2 0 Won 97th Grey Cup
MTL2010 12601st in East Division 2 0 Won 98th Grey Cup
MTL2011 10802nd in East Division 0 1 Lost in East Semi-Final
MTL2012 11701st in East Division 0 1 Lost in East Final
MTL2013 81003rd in East Division 0 1 Lost in East Semi-Final
MTL2014 9902nd in East Division 1 1 Lost in East Final
MTL2015 61204th in East Division - - Missed Playoffs
MTL2016 71103rd in East Division - - Missed Playoffs
TOR2017 990 1st in East Division 2 0 Won 105th Grey Cup
TOR2018 41404th in East Division - - Missed Playoffs
TOR2019 060
Total 267197111 Division
27175 Grey Cup Championships

Head coachEdit

Team Year Regular Season Post Season
WonLostTiesWin %Finish Won Lost Result
MTL2001 010.000 3rd in East Division 0 1 Lost in Division Semi-Finals
MTL2006 220.5001st in East Division 1 1 Lost in Grey Cup
MTL2007 8100.444 3rd in East Division 0 1 Lost in Division Semi-Finals
MTL2013 670.461 3rd in East Division 0 1 Lost in Division Semi-Finals
MTL2015 370.300 4th in East Division - - Did not qualify
MTL2016 390.250 - - - Resigned Mid-Season
Total 22360.3791 East Division
140 Grey Cups


External linksEdit

Template:Montreal Alouettes general manager navbox

Community content is available under CC-BY-SA unless otherwise noted.