In a twist of fate, McGrath had been an independent overseer of the process that interviewed and appointed Canavan in 2011.
It was revealed at the county board meeting that 14 candidates had been approached in relation to the role and four had interviewed.
McGrath's last job was with the Down minors, and he has been involved with Down club Bryansford in recent years.
His greatest triumph, however, was to win Sam Maguire with Down in 1991 and 1994.
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