Not many CFL commissioners stayed in the post as long as Mark Cohon has.
The fact he’s leaving on his own terms is almost as rare.
The 48-year-old surprised most around the three-down loop on Wednesday when the CFL announced Cohon will not be seeking a third term after eight years at the helm. He will remain in his role until his contract expires in April.
Cohon’s list of accomplishments is much longer than his failures — of that there is no debate. That is the main reason why he will end up being the longest-serving CFL commissioner since Jake Gaudaur’s 16-year reign ended in 1984.
“We would all conclude that the league is much stronger today and in a much better position today than it was when Mark first started out in his role,” Brock Bulbuck, Winnipeg’s CFL governor, said on Wednesday. “It’s been a good period of time for the CFL.”
Cohon was no talk and all action during his stint as the commish. He landed a five-year, $200-million television contract with TSN and RDS, he found stable ownership in returning the league to Ottawa, and he oversaw the construction or refurbishment of stadiums for nearly every organization.