Dan Kepley Knows More Than Has Been Written

Steve ThompsonAnalyst IIIAugust 23, 2010

Last week's resignation of Edmonton Eskimo linebacker coach, Dan Kepley, underscores something that has not happened since the 1960s: the Edmonton Eskimos are the laughingstock of the CFL.

Since the 1970s, the Eskimos and winning have been virtually synonymous, and the startling depths to which they have fallen this year are a distant memory for older Eskimo fans.

No Eskimo personified the hard, tough, winning football that has been around Edmonton more than Dan Kepley, and he must have been thinking he was living a nightmare this year to see how soft the team had become.

The Eskimos have been publicly criticized as not being ready to play football when the game begins, making key mistakes at the worst time, and for undisciplined play.

Usually an article like this one is written about Hamilton, Toronto, or Ottawa.

The Eskimos don't even have the excuse of losing their starting quarterback like the equally woeful BC Lions.  They are the worst team in the league, period.

Unless he is one to cut and run, and Kepley has never ever shown those qualities, his resignation has to be speculated as one of personal responsibility for the debacle, distress at seeing his beloved team sink so low, and frustration at not been able to take the steps he thinks are necessary to restore the team.

Kepley was a friend of fired general manager Danny Maciocia, and that firing shook his commitment to the team.

There is also speculation that he did not get along with current middle linebacker, Maurice Lloyd, Edmonton's prize 2009 free agent acquisition.

As a member of the Eskimo coaching staff, Kepley must have been privy to the inside disintegration of the team, and contrasted it to the spirit of his victorious playing days.

If one was to get the truth out of him, and he has yet to make any public announcements, he could probably tell everyone how it was in his playing days, and at least give clues as to why the team has fallen so low now.

Clearly there are gaps in this organization: a gap between owner/senior management and the fired general manager; a gap between the ex-general manager and the head coach and his assistant coaches; a gap between the head coach and his assistant coaches; gaps among the assistant coaches; and gaps between the coaching staff and the players.

Kepley obviously saw what was going on, and when he felt powerless to breach the gaps and frustrated because he saw no way to turn things around, he resigned.

So far, nobody has managed to get his view of the picture out of him.

The twin heads of the Eskimos, Rick LeLacheur, and Doug Goss, vowed to clean house after the bad start, but their firing of Maciocia was their only move so far.

So far, the rest of the house cleaning seems to be a voluntary act, piece by piece.

The only real speculation is whether LeLacheur and Goss will complete the house cleaning now and let the healing and rebuilding begin, or wait until the end of the season after the Eskimos fail to make the playoffs.

It's taken nearly 50 years for the mighty Eskimos to fall this low, crashing down like the ruins of the Roman Empire, an epic odyssey of Dan Kepley's untold story, that he has yet make public.