Gordon Currie, a legendary Saskatchewan coach and educator who also served in Grant Devine’s cabinet, passed away this week.
He was 93.
Currie was probably best known as the longtime coach of the Regina Rams football team, with a legacy of winning national championships (six) but also of molding boys into men.
He was a teacher and principal who also coached the Balfour Technical School football team and the Regina Red Sox baseball team.
Currie Field, where the Red Sox play today, is named in his honour.
In a 1990s interview with CBC, Currie shared some of his philosophy about the “two scoreboards” and the idea that the one at the end of the field may not determine everything.
‘He was so genuine … and honest and sincere.’
– Frank McCrystal
“The other scoreboard comes into play and that other scoreboard, it determines the extent to which you will win or you will lose more than the one at the end of the field — and that’s the scoreboard in your heart.”
Among those mourning his loss is Frank McCrystal, who coached the Rams with Currie and for 30 years after he left.
“He was so genuine … and honest and sincere,” McCrystal told the CBC Radio’s Morning Edition.
“He was just a pragmatist. He understood the simple things are what make greatness.”
McCrystal said he learned much about football from Currie, but also life lessons.
“Coaching is a little tricky sometimes,” he said. “Sometimes you have to be a coach, sometimes a friend, sometimes a parent. Gord could be all of those things.”
Over the years, he went to see Currie many times for advice.
One of the takeaways, McCrystal said, was this: “Be forthright with your players and make sure you’re doing it for the right reasons.”