Catch the Gray Cup game between the Alouettes and Blue Bombers on Sunday at 5pm with the pre-game show on RDS and on RDS.ca.
HAMILTON – After losing his father at the age of 10, Jason Maas is adamant that his team has a family spirit. He demonstrated this brilliantly by integrating his boy, Bear, into the club’s entourage.
Maas has already told about the tragic death of his father, who was a policeman. He was killed in 1986, at the age of 29, during his arrest.
Away from his family for most of the season, his first as head coach in Montreal, Maas has pulled himself together. Since his son was enjoying a week off from school in Alberta, he invited him to come to the Alouettes’ nest. Bear thus had a front row seat until the victory in the East final against Toronto.
It’s hard to know if it was a charm, but he won’t miss anything from Maas’ first appearance in a Gray Cup game as a head coach.
“My son’s presence could not be more precious. I appreciate every moment I spend with my boyfriend, girlfriend or husband. When you’re a father and you have a little boy, it’s a very powerful feeling,” said Maas RDS.ca.
“When he’s around me, I want to protect him, I want him to be the best,” Maas added emotionally.
“And I have to say, selfishly, I’m just very comfortable with that. I want to enjoy what I have experienced in life. Those who have gone through similar ordeals can understand well,” continued Maas, who hopes that his memory will never erase the distant memories lived with his father.
Attending several Alouettes practices, we could see that Bear was not holding his neighbor back. His athletic prowess is noticeable, and he seems to be able to beat several Alouettes players in the little friendly contests set up in the locker room (pickleball, mini-basketball, ping-pong, mini-putt, etc.).
“Bear wants to become a professional athlete. Therefore, I want him to experience what it’s like in this environment, to be part of a united group. By spending time with our team, he quickly realizes a few important things in life,” Maas aptly aimed.
Consistent in his words, Maas does not keep this privilege only for his family. He encourages his group of coaches and players to act in the same direction as before. So Luc Brodeur-Jourdain developed a habit of allowing his stepson Thomas, who has an autism spectrum disorder, one training day a week in the latter part of the season.
“Jason is very happy when Thomas comes so that our family can experience what we experience. He will continue this week, he will be in training on Saturday, for the Gray Cup,” Brodeur-Jourdain told us, who will be able to count on the support of his wife, two children, brothers and their children in Hamilton.
This aspect of Maas’ personal life united the group even more.
“When you know what he went through as a child, you can feel that he truly cares about our happiness and fulfillment in life. The fact that he can tell us about his father’s death has brought us closer to him. Day and night are like a team. “The bond that exists between players, I’ve probably never seen it before,” William Stanback said.Jason Maas
The ball carrier will be able to enjoy a Gray Cup game playing in front of his wife and two children.
“It is a huge privilege that they are here, we have been talking about winning the Gray Cup all year. Even my son, who is five years old, is starting to understand how important the championship is to us. He had school this week, but every day he asked me if the game was tomorrow, he couldn’t wait for it to happen,” Stanback said.
“I told him: ‘When we win, because I know we will, you will be on the field with me and celebrate,'” he added.
Young dad special teams coordinator Byron Archambault appreciates Maas’s openness.
“The family is always welcome at the stadium and in the office. If you have an obligation to your family, you can go as long as you do your job. Establishing such an atmosphere makes you want to work for him. It makes everything more enjoyable, and he also knows how to laugh and have fun,” Archambault said.
“This approach encourages people to work even harder. This is one of the reasons for our team’s success, I am convinced. Guys want to help others, it’s like a family and you will sacrifice for your family,” Maas responded.
However, there are Alouettes players who will have to play this game alone. This is the case of Reggie Stubblefield whose family lives in Texas.
“It’s unfortunate that they were so far away, no one could attend the meeting. I’m always alone and maybe that’s why they call me Uno, but that’s okay. I will play for them, I know they will watch the game and I will give them a good show”, said the debutant, who had a little heavy heart on the subject.
But Stubblefield vows to win so he can call his loved ones and celebrate from afar, but also taste this championship with his Alouettes family, who couldn’t do without him.