PRESS RELEASE: Saint Mary’s Huskies announce Steve Sumarah as head football coach

Saint Mary’s University is excited to announce the return of Steve Sumarah as head coach of the Saint Mary’s Huskies football team.

“We are extremely excited and proud to announce Steve Sumarah as the new football coach of the Huskies,” said Scott Gray, Saint Mary’s Director of Athletics & Recreation. “It is a pivotal time for our football program and Coach Sumarah is the right person to lead us forward; he is ready to roll up his sleeves and get to work.”

A Halifax native, Sumarah is no stranger to the Huskies football program, having worked for the team for 14 seasons: as Head Coach from 2006-2011, and Offensive Coordinator from 1998-2005.

“It’s a huge honour to be named head coach of the Saint Mary’s Huskies,” said Sumarah. “To get a chance to do what I love, in the city that I was born and raised, is an amazing opportunity. This is a school I went to; my dad and uncles went here. The history that my family has at Saint Mary’s and in Halifax is very deep, and to be back here in this position is a very exciting moment for myself and my family.”

During Sumarah’s 14 seasons with the Huskies, the team won 10 AUS Championships, played in five Vanier Cup Championships, and won two Vanier Cups (2001 & 2002).

Over his six seasons as Huskies head coach, Sumarah was named CIS Coach of the Year in 2009, AUS Coach of the Year three times, and compiled a regular season record of 35-12, and overall record of 42-18. During the 2007 season, Sumarah coached the Huskies to the Vanier Cup Final.

“I like to consider myself as a people person, and I think very strongly of our student athletes,” said Sumarah. “My core values as a coach are trust, communication, and accountability. Those come first, and if our team can take care of those things, then that leads me into my next three priorities: making sure our athletes are strong, graduating students, responsible and dedicated citizens, and finally playing a great, exciting brand of football.”

Sumarah returns to Saint Mary’s following 10 seasons as head coach of the Carleton Ravens, where he coached the team to a 29-33 record. He has also been head coach of the Canada National Junior Football Team since 2016, and led Canada to a IFAF U19 World Junior Championship in 2018.

“We want to make this Halifax’s team again. There was nothing better than being at Huskies Stadium on a Friday night, with 5,000 people in the stands, and the energy that brought to this city,” said Sumarah.

“I’d like to thank Michelle Benoit (Saint Mary’s Vice President, Finance and Administration) and Scott Gray, as I’ve seen a great commitment from the administrative team at the university to position this program for future success. Support from our loyal alumni and community is also key and I look forward to reconnecting with alumni and Husky fans in the months and years ahead. It won’t be an overnight process, it’s a cultural change that has to happen over time, and I’m very excited to be a part of it.”

Sumarah is a Saint Mary’s alumni, graduating with a Masters in Education in 1992. He will be moving back to Halifax with his wife Amanda Hardiman and has one daughter, Brooke, and two stepchildren, Ryan and Brianna Kublek.

Saint Mary’s Huskies football has a rich legacy dating back to 1956, winning three Vanier Cups and 24 conference championships.

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