Leo Cahill

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Leo Cahill (July 30, 1928 – February 15, 2018) was a Canadian head coach and general manager in the Canadian Football League, much of it spent with the Toronto Argonauts.

Early life

Cahill was born on July 30, 1928 in Utica, Illinois and later attended the University of Illinois on a football scholarship. He appeared as a player in the 1947 Rose Bowl.[1] After leaving college, Cahill served in the United States Army during the Korean War.[2]


Following his honourable discharge from the U.S. Army, Cahill ascended the coaching ranks through various colleges, including his alma mater.[3] He began his Canadian Football League career in the 1960s as an assistant coach with the Montreal Alouettes before moving to Toronto with the then Toronto Rifles of the Continental Football League.[1] He was appointed head coach of the Toronto Argonauts in 1967, retaining the position until 1972, returning again in the 1977 and 1978 seasons.[4] He would later serve as General Manager for the team from 1986 to 1988.[3] In his time with the Argonauts he was credited with bringing in such greats such as Mel Profit, Jim Stillwagon, Jim Corrigall, Leon McQuay and Joe Theismann.[2]

From 2004 onward, Cahill served as goodwill ambassador for the Argonauts. He also served as a colour commentator for CFL telecasts on CBC between 1981 and 1985.[3] Cahill was inducted into the Ontario Sports Hall of Fame in 2013 in recognition of his contributions to the Argonauts franchise.[5]


Leo Cahill died at an Atlanta hospital on February 15, 2018 at the age of 89, and is survived by five children: Steve, Christy, Terry, Lisa and Bettye.[2][6]


  1. ^ a b Sherwin, Fred (February 16, 2018). "Leo Cahill, former Argos head coach and general manger dead at age 89". The Canadian Press. Retrieved February 17, 2018.
  2. ^ a b c Simmons, Steve (February 16, 2018). "Former Argos coach Leo Cahill dies at 89". Postmedia Network. Retrieved February 17, 2018.
  3. ^ a b c Ralph, Dan (February 16, 2018). "Former Toronto Argonauts Head Coach Leo Cahill Passes Away At Age 89". CTV News. Retrieved February 17, 2018.
  4. ^ Staff (February 16, 2018). "CFL, Argos Mourn the Passing of Legendary Coach Leo Cahill". CFL. Retrieved February 17, 2018.
  5. ^ "Leo Cahill". oshof.ca. Retrieved September 25, 2014.
  6. ^ "Leo Cahill, 89: Legendary head coach and showman put the Toronto Argonauts 'back on the map'". Retrieved 19 March 2018 – via The Globe and Mail.

External links

  • CFL.ca profile
  • "Tribute to Leo may have ring to it"
  • "The toughest fight of Leo Cahill's life"
  • "Argos’ legend Cahill has eye on 100th Grey Cup"

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