Joe Scanella

Scannella was born on May 22 1928 in Passaic, NJ and played high school football at Clifton High School  (Clifton NJ) and  attended Lehigh University (PA) where he was 2nd team Little All-America as the Engineers quarterback. Undrafted by the NFL, Scannella instead had a tryout with Regina in the CFL.  Unable to secure a spot with the Roughriders, Scanella turned to coaching, first as an assistant coach for Clifton High before becoming head coach of the Oceanside High (NY) football team starting in 1955.  In 1960 he moved to Cornell University as an assistant coach, then taking over as head coach at Baldwin High (Long Island NY) in March 1961. Scanella moved back to the college ranks from 1964 through 1968 when he was the head coach and athletic director at CW Post College before joining the New York Giants front office. He shifted to the Alouettes in February 1969 as  backfield and quarterback coach but was a victim of the wholesale dismissal of Kay Dalton’s staff at the end of the season. He was signed as head coach at the University of Vermont. in January, 1970 and staying with the Montpelier program until moving  to the west coast as special teams coach with Oakland Raiders  in August of 1972, remaining with them in that capacity through 1977.

In  January  1978, Scanella was named by the Alouettes as their new head coach replacing Marv Levy, for $50,000 per year. He led the team to two Grey Cup finals (both losses to Edmonton) in 1978 and 1979. He was originally hired on a three year contract which was extended for another 2 years in 1981 at $80,000 per year. Scanella, however was fired ten games into the 1981 season by team owner  Nelson Skalbania after 8 straight losses on Sept 11. The Als were 1-9-1 at the time of his firing, despite having the highest payroll in Canada at the time. From 1982 to 1984 Scanella was an assistant coach with the Cleveland Browns. He returned to the Oakland Raiders in 1987, and retired from coaching after the 1993 NFL season. However he continued as a part time scout for the Indianapolis Colts.

[Bio by Wes Cross]

Scanella Had Urgo To Coach Even As Boy

Montreal Fires Coach Scanella - September 12, 1981

Scanella First To Feel Axe - September 14, 1981

Browns Tab Scanella - February 4, 1982

Joe Scanella

Joe Scanella