Tiger-Cats remove Lancaster as GM

Ron Lancaster is no longer general manager of the Hamilton Tiger-Cats.

The winless Tiger-Cats (0-6) replaced Lancaster with Rob Katz, who was introduced Wednesday as the Canadian Football League team's chief operating officer of business and football operations as well as interim GM.

Katz, currently serving as a special assistant on the business side, also inherits duties performed by Ticats president David Sauve, who becomes chairman.

"We have really talented people across our football organization and the results they've seen this year does not reflect the talent we've got available in this football operation," Ticats owner Bob Young said at Wednesday's news conference.

"Whenever something like that happens, it's always a function of poor organization less than poor talented people."

Lancaster, who spent two years as GM, will oversee player evaluations and scouting as senior director of football operations.

Asked if the Ticats hoped that Lancaster might tender his resignation, Ticats director of media relations Malcolm Darnley replied: "Absolutely not. This move is done to better utilize Ron Lancaster's strengths.

"Ron is a legend. And his football knowledge is incredible.

"This allows him to focus on what we believe are his strengths, which is evaluating football talent (and) developing football talent. And to have more time to have his say on football operations."

Katz has zero experience as a GM, having spent two years as director of marketing and promotions for the Tampa Bay Devil Rays before co-founding Convizion, a media and marketing company utilized by the AFL and organizers of the NCAA Blue/Gray Football Classic.

"Whether he becomes the full-time general manager, I think we just want to wait and see ... to make sure we've made the right decisions everywhere," Darnley said.

Darnley further maintained that second-year head coach Greg Marshall is not in danger of losing his job.

"I have had conversations with (Ticats owner) Bob (Young) and Greg, not regarding Greg's job security, but mostly how pleased they are with what Greg is doing," Darnley said. "It's tough to say when you're 0-6, but the belief is inside Ivor Wynne that we are stronger and a better football organization right now than we were at this time last year.

"We all believe 100 per cent in Greg. And in no way is there any question about his job security right now."

Marshall, by coincidence, assumed the head coaching reins from Lancaster, who posted a 51-56-1-3 record over five seasons.

Hamilton hired Lancaster as head coach and director of football operations on Nov. 26, 1997, and went on to win the 1999 Grey Cup - the franchise's first championship in 13 years.

Lancaster remained head coach until Dec. 11, 2003, when Young asked that he concentrate on GM duties and brought in Marshall.

with files from CP Online