In the late 1970’s and early 1980’s University of British Columbia’s Kevin Konar and University of Alberta’s Garrett Doll were nemesis to the offenses for the University of Calgary Dinos. They often saved their best games for those against the Scarlet & Gold.
Konar and Doll were key middle linebackers as their teams won Conference titles and played in Vanier Cups. Konar was on the UBC team that lost 16-3 to Queen’s in the 1978 Vanier Cup. Doll was on the losing side for Alberta in the 1981 Vanier Cup, when they fell 18-12 to Acadia. Both went on to careers in the Canadian Football League and much success following football. Garret Doll is a High School principal in St. Albert while Kevin Konar earned his MBA and is an Associate Portfolio Manager with RBC Dominion Securities in North Vancouver.
Their sons, Adam Konar and Tanner Doll, are starting middle linebackers, not with their father’s Alma Maters, but with the University of Calgary, a school that their fathers battled against during their distinguished collegiate careers, three decades ago.
Former University of Calgary head football Coach Mike Lashuk has the upmost respect for Adam’s and Garret’s fathers remembering them vividly coaching against them.
“Both Kevin Konar and Garrett Doll were fabulous players in the league,” recalls former Dinos head coach Mike Lashuk. He now enjoys watching their sons plays for his team at McMahon Stadium in 2014.
After a stellar career at UBC that saw him earn three Conference all-star honours and two-time All-Canadian status, Kevin Konar was drafted fifth overall in the 1980 CFL Draft. Kevin went on to have a great professional career with the BC Lions earning all-Canadian honours at linebacker in 1985 and 1987. In a 10-year career Konar played in 162 games for the Lions.
Doll spent four years at the University of Alberta earning unanimous Conference all-star recognition in 1984. Doll’s career, although not as lengthy as Konar’s, was productive. Garret was selected 11th overall by the Calgary Stampeders playing three solid years for the Stamps from 1985-87 before retiring from the game.
“I was aware how good my father was but he was pretty humble about it,” states Adam. Both Konars attended Vancouver College and excelled at the high school level. “He coached me through community ball and up to Grade 10,” recalls Adam. In speaking about his father’s accomplishments, Adam states, “everywhere he (Kevin) played he has been recognized for his great play.” Kevin has been inducted into the Vancouver College Hall of Fame, the BC Lions Ring of Honour and UBC Athletic Hall of Fame. Adam remains in constant contact with his father about football. “We speak before and after most games,” Adam states.
Tanner Doll is also aware of his father’s pedigree. “My Dad does not talk about his career but I know he flew around out on the field and was pretty good,” states Tanner who wears number 40, the same number his father donned for the Stampeders.
Like Adam, Tanner played for his father in youth football but unlike Adam, Tanner had his father for his High School coach at St. Albert Catholic High School.
“I could not have played at this level if not for my father,” states Tanner referring to the fact that he did not start football until he was 11 as their family was residing in China where his parents taught school before eventually settling back in St. Albert.
Adam was recruited out of High School by Coach Blake Nill but chose to spend his initial year from High School at UBC. A Day one starter for the Thunderbirds at linebacker as a freshman, Adam squared off against the Dinos when UBC lost in the Canada West Final in 2011. Konar spent the following season with the Langley Rams of British Columbia Junior Football League. He transferred Calgary in 2013 but missed last year with a knee injury incurred in the Spring Camp with the Dinos.
“I wanted to stay close to home initially but my father knew Coach Nill and felt it would be good for me to come to Calgary,” states Konar. “The coaching and the school are really good,” stated Konar who led the Dinos recording 34 solo tackles and 11 assisted tackles despite missing the first game of the season against the University of Alberta.
Doll, a fourth year Communications student was recruited by the Universities of Alberta and Saskatchewan as well as Calgary.
“My father was involved with the recruiting process. He felt this was the best spot for me and I have not regretted the decision,” states Doll who also serves as the team’s long snapper.
Both Konar and Doll have praise for their linebacker coach Wayne Harris, son of the legendary Calgary Stampeders Hall of Fame player, Wayne Harris.
“Other than my father, Coach Harris is the only other coach I have played for. He is awesome,” states Doll who recorded 17 solo tackles and 13 assisted tackles in eight Conference games. Konar agrees, stating “the coaching here has been great.”
Both Adam and Tanner want to achieve something their dads did not achieve during the college careers, a Vanier Cup Championship. Tanner started in the 2013 Vanier Cup against Laval as the Dinos came up on the short end of 25-14 score.