Darrell Adams focused on instilling championship mentality as new head coach of Varsity Blues

Darrell Adams wants to lay a foundation for success now and in the future.

Darrell Adams has one goal for the University of Toronto Varsity Blues this season: winning a championship. (Photo: Howard Bailey/Centennial College).  

TORONTO – The University of Toronto Varsity Blues football team is gearing up for a monumental shift in fortunes, and at the forefront of this transformation is new head coach Darrell Adams.

With only two playoff appearances in the last 22 seasons, the team’s quest for glory has been marred by disappointment. However, Adams is on a mission to rewrite Varsity Blues history and lead them to championship contention.

“Our foundation of our culture is three parts: It’s about respect, trust and love,” Adams said. “I want them to believe in each other, to look each other in the eye and say, ‘that’s my brother and I love him.'”

This is the first time Adams has held a head coaching position, having spent the past decade in various roles with Waterloo, Carleton and the CFL’s Hamilton Tiger-Cats. Prior to joining the coaching ranks, the former defensive tackle had stints with the Tiger-Cats and the NFL’s New York Jets after a standout college career at Villanova.

The Jamaica, New York, native understands that success on the field is not solely determined by talent and tactics but also by the intangible qualities of camaraderie and mutual support. He has instilled a sense of belief in his players, empowering them to push beyond their limits and strive for excellence in every aspect of their game.

“We’re going to work together one day at a time, keeping that championship mentality,” he said. “We’re not trying to do anything other than win a championship, so we’re doing those steps towards it every single day.”

Moreover, Adams is deeply invested in the personal and academic development of his players. His commitment to their holistic growth has created a culture of continuous improvement and accountability.

“We’re recruiting great student athletes first and foremost,” Adams said. “So we are going to bring guys in that love school as much as they love football.”

The returning players have noticed a significant change in the atmosphere around the team since Adams’ arrival. There’s a greater sense of solidarity and a collective effort to build bonds on and off the field, said team leaders Owen Cassie, Anthony Ejupi and Owen Mitchell.

“I think a lot more effort to hang out together outside of football,” Cassie said. “Definitely emphasizing the importance of team team bonding, team building stuff.”

For the University of Toronto men’s football team, there’s a renewed sense of confidence and a belief that Adams is the right man to lead this program to new heights.

“We’re trying to win a championship this year,” Adams said. “We’re not worried about what hasn’t happened in a long time.”

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Posted: Mar 10 2024 6:32 pm
Filed under: Football Sports