Tim Prinsen was working at his brother’s welding shop when he got the call.
The former Edmonton Eskimos centre who once helped protect quarterback Ricky Ray, is now being asked to share his expertise on the matter with this year’s crop of offensive linemen.
On Wednesday, Prinsen was hired by the Eskimos to replace Jeff Bleamer, who was relieved of his duties.
He, along with new linebacker coach Mark Nelson, are the latest additions to the Eskimos coaching staff.
“I was at my desk doing a bid for a pressure vessel and some pipe work when this opportunity arose,” Prinsen said. “I didn’t expect it, but I’m glad it’s here.”
A former junior standout with the Edmonton Huskies, Prinsen went on to play five seasons with the Eskimos before injuries brought a premature end to his career.
He got involved in coaching with the University of Alberta where he spent four seasons with the Golden Bears.
“I didn’t know that I wanted to coach until I started coaching at the U of A,” Prinsen said. “I’m very thankful for coach (Jerry) Friesen for giving me that opportunity to figure it out.
“But a couple of years in, I thought I could do this for a living.”
Prinsen got a taste of what it would be like to coach in the CFL when he was guest instructor at training camp this year.
He’ll be under instant scrutiny trying to get the offensive line back on track.
“This is exciting, this is a new step in my life, a new direction that I’m going through. I’m excited to be here and excited to get going,” he said. “I know it’ll take a little while, I have to figure out the playbook and my guys up front, but we’re going to hit the ground running.”
— Van Diest