John Huard

HuardA native of Waterville, Maine, John Huard played four years of football at the University of Maine, and was a three-time Maine Athlete-of-the-Year. A linebacker, he is generally considered to be the finest football player the state of Maine has ever produced.

John played professionally with Denver and New Orleans in the NFL and Montreal and Toronto in the CFL before retiring due to injury.

His coaching career began at the University of Maine, and through the intervention of long-time friend and mentor J.I. Albrecht, he arrived at Acadia to take up the head coaching duties in the fall of 1979. His first season was a dream, as the Axemen won the conference title (18-0 over St. F.X.), the Atlantic Bowl (23-7 over Alberta) and Acadia’s first Vanier Cup (34-12 over Western).

The 1980 Axemen lost their season opener, then won eight straight, including the conference championship, to once again advance to the Atlantic Bowl, where they unfortunately lost 28-8 to Ottawa. For their stellar efforts, John was named the AUAA Coach of The Year.

The 1981 Axemen won a third straight conference title (34-11 over Mount A), a second Atlantic Bowl (40-14 over Queen’s), and capped their season with Acadia’s second Vanier Cup in three years (18-12 over Alberta). This time, John won the Frank Tindall Trophy as CIAU Coach of the Year.

After leaving Acadia after the 1983 season, John was hired to coach the Atlantic Schooners, a conditional CFL expansion team based in Halifax. Unfortunately, the Schooners folded before playing a game.

John served as head coach of the Maine Military Academy from 1987-1994, and briefly as head coach of the CFL’s expansion Shreveport Pirates. He coached at Kent Hills High School in Maine, and spent part of the 2000 season as head coach of the CFL’s Toronto Argonauts. In 2003, John was the first inductee into the University of Maine’s Ring of Honour.

John is currently CEO of Northeast Turf in South Portland, ME, and Northeast representative for FieldTurf. His generous lead donation of almost $1 million made possible the installation of FieldTurf on Acadia’s Raymond Field, heralding the start of a new era for Acadia football.