If Montreal Alouettes fans are researching their team's new head coach Dan Hawkins, one of the first things they'll learn is he's a man with a big personality.
"If you get to know me I can be pretty emotional," Hawkins told TSN's Michael Landsberg on Off The Record.
"I've been very gregarious. I'm a passionate guy. I have a zest for life and all things outside the box."
Hawkins said he has no plans to rein in his personality as Alouettes head coach, the fourth head coaching opportunity of his career and first outside of American college football.
"I think you have to be yourself. I wear my heart on my sleeve and usually, if I'm upset (the players) know it; if I'm happy they know it. Most of the time, I'm happy; I'm a very positive person and I think that's the environment that we want."
Hawkins' first head coaching job was with NAIA Division II Willamette before also making stops with Boise State and Colorado of the NCAA. This is Hawkins' first coaching stint north of the border, and the veteran bench boss knows he'll have his hands full learning the nuances of the Canadian game.
"There's no question it's a steep learning curve. We've got to be able to catch up to that, practice those situations and try to get on board as fast as we can. That's part of the appeal for me, learning a whole new way of doing things."
Hawkins also added that Montreal is a good situation for a first time CFL coach to come in to because of the experience and support system already in place.
"We're fortunate because obviously Jim Popp has been a coach. We have a bunch of guys on our staff, we've already reached out to different guys and we'll continue to reach out."
It's common practice for a new head coach to reach out to the team's veteran leaders shortly after being hired and Hawkins did just that, getting in touch with Alouettes' leader and future Hall of Famer Anthony Calvillo even before his hiring was made official.
"I told AC, 'Look, if it goes down and I am the coach, just so you know here's what I'm thinking.' I just wanted to give him a precursor to what might happen."