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Thread: Scott Milanovich to be the next Head Coach

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    Re: Scott Milanovich to be the next Head Coach

    So sounds like they got a few coaches that were with Ottawa last year by grabbing Thorpe, October, and McDonnell. Thorpe is an awfully good get and as I mentioned in a post was on the same staff in Montreal one year with Millanovich so he should be familiar with him but the rest of the hires have me wondering. Dont get me wrong I like the retention of Gaas, Maxie, and Oswalt but I guess what I'm getting at is I'm wondering if SM is familiar with anyone of these hires? It doesn't feel like to me that he brought any of his own guys in. He kept a couple of guys from the old Eskimos staff and he hired some guys from Ottawa who perhaps came here as recommendations from Thorpe? Or maybe are guys that Sunderland knew? I'm not trying to be negative here but I guess I was just expecting a hire that SM knew from his days in the NFL or someone that was on one of his previous staffs. Maybe someone else can point out a connection that he has with some of his coaching hires to me that I'm missing aside from Thorpe.
    Last edited by adb; 01-15-2020 at 11:58 AM.
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    Re: Scott Milanovich to be the next Head Coach

    Outstanding to get Thorpe. Means we will have an attacking D. Very pleased Gass is retained, would have been a shame if he was here only one year. McDonell ??? From the RedBlacks ???

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    Re: Scott Milanovich to be the next Head Coach

    Yeah, can't find much on McDonnell either but apparently he came up from the States to coach the REDBLACKS so there's gotta be info somewhere!

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    Re: Scott Milanovich to be the next Head Coach

    With only 7 of a possible 11 man coaching staff - the press release said additional coaches to be named in the future.
    Possible Positions:
    RB Coach - surprised Tim Prinsen wasn't retained. Edmonton guy who I thought might even move back to be our OL coach.
    LB Coach
    DB Coach - Thorpe often also coaches this position; though the press release did not name him as such.
    Offensive Assistant

    - - - Updated - - -

    Quote Originally Posted by Jtuck09 View Post
    Yeah, can't find much on McDonnell either but apparently he came up from the States to coach the REDBLACKS so there's gotta be info somewhere!
    https://www.ottawaredblacks.com/john-mcdonell/

    Redblacks OL coach for two years. No previous CFL experience. Long NCAA resume. Seems like a good hire!

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    Re: Scott Milanovich to be the next Head Coach

    I think Thorpe was one of the better options once Lolley decided not to return. He runs an aggressive style of defence that seems to work well in today's CFL. The fact that he almost came to Edmonton a few years earlier might have meant an easier selling job as well.

    Interesting observations about both the Ottawa guys and the returnees. With the guys on the offensive side of the ball, I wouldn't be surprised if there was some input from Harris as much as anyone, or perhaps Elizondo, who is said to have ties with both Milanovich and Sunderland. It also wouldn't shock me if Milanovich reached out to Maas about guys like Gass or Maxie.

    I, too, am a bit surprised about the lack of known connections Milanovich is bringing in - but again, he's been a guy out of the CFL for a while now and a lot of the guys he worked with there are working. There also could be guys who are exploring U.S. options first before agreeing to be here or guys still under contract down there.

    Somewhere online I saw talk about the Lions leaving one spot open to give them flexibility to address areas of need later. With just seven bodies, the Esks certainly have room to add themselves (although there could be financial constraints tied to the Maas and Lolley departures). I'd tend to agree running backs, linebackers, and defensive backfield may all be areas that could be addressed.

    Overall, I'm cautiously optimistic. I like Gass and think he could be a good long-term and Maxie's unit was a strong suit last year. They should provide stability going into this first year. It'll be interesting to see what they add to this group.


    Now, I guess we look for players with ties to Thorpe or who could fit his defence.

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    Re: Scott Milanovich to be the next Head Coach

    Not going to lie, disappointed Mike Gibson wasn't retained as OL coach. Ottawa gave up 48 sacks last year and we only gave up 25.
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    Re: Scott Milanovich to be the next Head Coach

    Getting Thorpe is huge.

    Overall, I really like the look of the new staff.

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    Re: Scott Milanovich to be the next Head Coach

    Quote Originally Posted by pete View Post
    Not going to lie, disappointed Mike Gibson wasn't retained as OL coach. Ottawa gave up 48 sacks last year and we only gave up 25.
    How much of that was Gibson, and how much was the offensive scheme and Trevor Harris getting the ball out within 2 steamboats? The OL looked pretty ordinary when it was Kilgore behind centre....
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    Re: Scott Milanovich to be the next Head Coach

    Quote Originally Posted by pete View Post
    Not going to lie, disappointed Mike Gibson wasn't retained as OL coach. Ottawa gave up 48 sacks last year and we only gave up 25.
    Can't keep EVERY coach from the old staff. SM will want some of his own guys in here too.

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    Re: Scott Milanovich to be the next Head Coach

    For those that are interested, Noel Thorpe was on Jamieson. Would be the last 20 min of Hour 1 podcast.

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    Re: Scott Milanovich to be the next Head Coach

    Quote Originally Posted by 56Parkies View Post
    How much of that was Gibson, and how much was the offensive scheme and Trevor Harris getting the ball out within 2 steamboats? The OL looked pretty ordinary when it was Kilgore behind centre....
    Quick ball movement definitely helps, but the line was better in 2019 than in 2018 despite losing a high-end starting tackle in SirV. I would say Gibson deserves some credit for that. Having guy like Saxelid progress like he did and being able to use Bond as a back-up though are also nice luxuries.

    McDonnell likely didn't have the same personnel last year, but he may have made a positive impression on people like Harris and Rogers in his time with the RedBlacks.

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    Re: Scott Milanovich to be the next Head Coach

    I must say I'm not overly excited with this staff as I thought I might be ,I Love both Milanovich And Thorpe and I like Maxie but the rest are just ok I was hoping for more of Milanovich own people ,but with the main coaches of HC,OC,DC I'm super pumped

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    Re: Scott Milanovich to be the next Head Coach

    Quote Originally Posted by Jtuck09 View Post
    Can't keep EVERY coach from the old staff. SM will want some of his own guys in here too.
    Which is what I was looking for but from what I can tell Thorpe is the only known commodity as far as SM is concerned. Maybe he'll be using the 4 remaining open spots on guys he's worked with before. I'm not panicking or anything and I don't mind the staff I'm just surprised there aren't more guys on there that SM has worked with before.
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    Re: Scott Milanovich to be the next Head Coach

    Quote Originally Posted by adb View Post
    Which is what I was looking for but from what I can tell Thorpe is the only known commodity as far as SM is concerned. Maybe he'll be using the 4 remaining open spots on guys he's worked with before. I'm not panicking or anything and I don't mind the staff I'm just surprised there aren't more guys on there that SM has worked with before.
    That's what I mean. Like some have said, I think he's waiting to see what happens to some guys State-side before finalizing everything.

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    Re: Scott Milanovich to be the next Head Coach

    Quote Originally Posted by Jtuck09 View Post
    That's what I mean. Like some have said, I think he's waiting to see what happens to some guys State-side before finalizing everything.
    He's got the key positions figured out for recruitment process so this leaves lots of options to fill the available spots as things shake out down south.

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    Re: Scott Milanovich to be the next Head Coach

    ....and AJ Gass is on Gregor.... it will be about 20 minutes in on the Hour 1 podcast.

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    Re: Scott Milanovich to be the next Head Coach

    Milanovich as HC/ OC with Thorpe as DC > Maas as HC/OC and Lolloey as DC.

    This is an upgraded staff in my eyes, will be interesting to see who we target in free agency to fit both new systems.
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    Re: Scott Milanovich to be the next Head Coach

    Sounds like there may only be one or two more coaches hired to the staff.




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    Re: Scott Milanovich to be the next Head Coach

    "No dress rehearsal, this is our life" - Gord Downie

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    Re: Scott Milanovich to be the next Head Coach

    Quote Originally Posted by Jtuck09 View Post
    Can't keep EVERY coach from the old staff. SM will want some of his own guys in here too.
    Not keeping a single O coach from a pretty potent O. Just sayin. Gibson is extremely reputable and did a really good job. Having 2 key FA on the OL and bringing in an OL coach who no one has heard of and has minimal experience in the CFL doesn’t make sense to me.
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    Re: Scott Milanovich to be the next Head Coach

    Winston was never a fav of mine when he was here as a player, which of course has nothing to do with him as a coach.

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    Re: Scott Milanovich to be the next Head Coach

    Quote Originally Posted by pete View Post
    Not keeping a single O coach from a pretty potent O. Just sayin. Gibson is extremely reputable and did a really good job. Having 2 key FA on the OL and bringing in an OL coach who no one has heard of and has minimal experience in the CFL doesn’t make sense to me.
    Milanovich is an offensive mind so I can see why he'd want his own people and not leftover offensive coaches from a previous staff.

    Maybe him and Gibson didn't share the same philosophy? Maybe Gibson didn't want to stay?

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    Re: Scott Milanovich to be the next Head Coach

    Quote Originally Posted by pete View Post
    Not keeping a single O coach from a pretty potent O. Just sayin. Gibson is extremely reputable and did a really good job. Having 2 key FA on the OL and bringing in an OL coach who no one has heard of and has minimal experience in the CFL doesn’t make sense to me.
    McDonnell was with the Redblacks' OL coach last year, so there is CFL experience there. There is a reason Gibson wasn't retained, and I'll give Milanovich the benefit of the doubt, as much as I would have been happy to have Gibson retained as well.
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    Re: Scott Milanovich to be the next Head Coach

    I see that Milanovich is the HC, OC, QB coach AND a special teams assistant. That's a lot of hats. With the stupid salary cap on coaches, I am guessing that is how the Esks are able to give Milanovich more money by giving the jobs of others to him. Being the OC/QB sort of goes together but I hope that isn't too many jobs for one guy. Seems like a lot.

    I am glad they kept Gass. I thought the special teams actually got a little better finally under his tenure.

    I am happy about Thorpe. The Esks have been trying to get him for several years now. I hope it was worth the wait.
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    Re: Scott Milanovich to be the next Head Coach

    Quote Originally Posted by pete View Post
    Not keeping a single O coach from a pretty potent O. Just sayin. Gibson is extremely reputable and did a really good job. Having 2 key FA on the OL and bringing in an OL coach who no one has heard of and has minimal experience in the CFL doesn’t make sense to me.
    Two things: 1. However potent that offence was, it absolutely sputtered in the red zone far too often. 2. SirVincent Rogers would have played under McDonnell and, that year, with him and Harris involved, they went to the Grey Cup final. I would think those two could vouch for who he is. It looks like he's got some good D1 universities on a coaching resume that spans nearly 40 years too.

    - - - Updated - - -

    Quote Originally Posted by Sectionq View Post
    I see that Milanovich is the HC, OC, QB coach AND a special teams assistant. That's a lot of hats. With the stupid salary cap on coaches, I am guessing that is how the Esks are able to give Milanovich more money by giving the jobs of others to him. Being the OC/QB sort of goes together but I hope that isn't too many jobs for one guy. Seems like a lot.
    I agree with you on this, but from several of the stories we've seen about his hiring, there was talk about how being a CFL head coach was an easier commitment level and work-life balance than an NFL positional coach. I have some difficulty believing that, but maybe there's some mindset that he's used to juggling those extra hours. Hopefully, if it is too much, he won't be afraid to delegate.

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    Re: Scott Milanovich to be the next Head Coach

    Quote Originally Posted by BeaverSports View Post
    Two things: 1. However potent that offence was, it absolutely sputtered in the red zone far too often. 2. SirVincent Rogers would have played under McDonnell and, that year, with him and Harris involved, they went to the Grey Cup final. I would think those two could vouch for who he is. It looks like he's got some good D1 universities on a coaching resume that spans nearly 40 years too.

    - - - Updated - - -



    I agree with you on this, but from several of the stories we've seen about his hiring, there was talk about how being a CFL head coach was an easier commitment level and work-life balance than an NFL positional coach. I have some difficulty believing that, but maybe there's some mindset that he's used to juggling those extra hours. Hopefully, if it is too much, he won't be afraid to delegate.
    When a coach has a lot of jobs, where I see it potentially being an issue is during games. IMO, a good head coach goes out and picks quality coordinators who he trusts and knows will get the job done then he allows them to do their jobs without micro managing them. IMO a good head coach will also delegate to others certain duties to lessen what is on his plate. BUT the HC still has to have a handle on everything. Maybe he doesn't know every single detail of the defense or special teams but he has to know some because the HC has to make in game decisions. Then you factor in he's a position and OC coach. So while he is doing his HC thing, he has to have the OC and QB's coach jobs going on. Then when half time comes around, I assume the HC has something to do in the locker room. Typically during half time, your offense/defense will make some adjustments. As the OC, he will be making adjustments to the offense. So given he has 4 jobs to do, will those others jobs take away time he has to make adjustments as an OC? I can't see how they wouldn't. Even if it's only a few mins, that still a few mins less than another teams OC might have to adjust.

    There was a lot of criticism about Maas not making enough in game adjustments, especially at half time to the offense as the OC. He was called "stubborn". He was doing a few jobs at once. I would be curious to know how much of that so called stubbornness and unwillingness/inability to adjust the offense especially at half times was because he didn't want too/wasn't able to do it vs he just physically didn't have time too? So while I agree that Milanovich looks to be an upgrade over Maas as a HC, I just worry that taking on that many jobs might hamper him. Decisions during the game have to happen fast. Will his duties as the OC, impact his HC duties? If your offense is struggling and you are trying to figure out as the OC how to counteract what the defense is doing to you, are you slow to make a decision as HC? Do you miss something as HC and vice versa. I don't have that answer nor am I saying he's a bad hire. I think he is a great hire. People can multi task but a human being can only do so many things and focus on so many things at once. So I just wonder if he is taking on too much. Having 4 jobs, 3 of which he's physically "the man" in those jobs meaning he's the go to guy who is doing all the work, seems like a lot.
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    Re: Scott Milanovich to be the next Head Coach

    Quote Originally Posted by Sectionq View Post
    When a coach has a lot of jobs, where I see it potentially being an issue is during games. IMO, a good head coach goes out and picks quality coordinators who he trusts and knows will get the job done then he allows them to do their jobs without micro managing them. IMO a good head coach will also delegate to others certain duties to lessen what is on his plate. BUT the HC still has to have a handle on everything. Maybe he doesn't know every single detail of the defense or special teams but he has to know some because the HC has to make in game decisions. Then you factor in he's a position and OC coach. So while he is doing his HC thing, he has to have the OC and QB's coach jobs going on. Then when half time comes around, I assume the HC has something to do in the locker room. Typically during half time, your offense/defense will make some adjustments. As the OC, he will be making adjustments to the offense. So given he has 4 jobs to do, will those others jobs take away time he has to make adjustments as an OC? I can't see how they wouldn't. Even if it's only a few mins, that still a few mins less than another teams OC might have to adjust.

    There was a lot of criticism about Maas not making enough in game adjustments, especially at half time to the offense as the OC. He was called "stubborn". He was doing a few jobs at once. I would be curious to know how much of that so called stubbornness and unwillingness/inability to adjust the offense especially at half times was because he didn't want too/wasn't able to do it vs he just physically didn't have time too? So while I agree that Milanovich looks to be an upgrade over Maas as a HC, I just worry that taking on that many jobs might hamper him. Decisions during the game have to happen fast. Will his duties as the OC, impact his HC duties? If your offense is struggling and you are trying to figure out as the OC how to counteract what the defense is doing to you, are you slow to make a decision as HC? Do you miss something as HC and vice versa. I don't have that answer nor am I saying he's a bad hire. I think he is a great hire. People can multi task but a human being can only do so many things and focus on so many things at once. So I just wonder if he is taking on too much. Having 4 jobs, 3 of which he's physically "the man" in those jobs meaning he's the go to guy who is doing all the work, seems like a lot.
    Let's just wait and see before we jump to any conclusions...

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    Re: Scott Milanovich to be the next Head Coach

    Quote Originally Posted by Jtuck09 View Post
    Let's just wait and see before we jump to any conclusions...
    Not sure how me stating 1 guy doing the job that normally 4 people do and there being risks to it is me jumping to conclusions in a negative way. But I guess me stating truths and not just sunshine and rainbows is offensive to some. You don't usually see 1 guy have this many positions but maybe it will be a great idea. I genuinely hope it will be no issue what so ever but seems like a lot to pile on one guys plate.
    Last edited by Sectionq; 01-16-2020 at 12:15 PM.
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    Re: Scott Milanovich to be the next Head Coach

    Quote Originally Posted by pete View Post
    Not going to lie, disappointed Mike Gibson wasn't retained as OL coach. Ottawa gave up 48 sacks last year and we only gave up 25.
    U gotta have your own guys.. I had zero issues with Gibson either but as a oc I know the first call I make when I take a job is to my oline coach.. most important position on offence..

    If I had to implement my system with a guy I didn’t know and trust it wouldn’t be the same..

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    Re: Scott Milanovich to be the next Head Coach

    Quote Originally Posted by Sectionq View Post
    When a coach has a lot of jobs, where I see it potentially being an issue is during games. IMO, a good head coach goes out and picks quality coordinators who he trusts and knows will get the job done then he allows them to do their jobs without micro managing them. IMO a good head coach will also delegate to others certain duties to lessen what is on his plate. BUT the HC still has to have a handle on everything...
    Yeah, that's a fair point and something worth watching. Your other two co-ordinators have to be guys you really trust to do their jobs. To me, the offensive co-ordinator and quarterbacks coach are a decent fit together if you're going to take on extra tasks as it's almost cutting out a middle man.

    I'm a little leery about the special teams assistant title he's given himself and the role it entails and would love to see more definition there. As you mentioned, a head coach can and will have his hand in a lot of things, so I wonder the need for that designation and the dynamics between Milanovich and Gass. Is it a way for Milanovich to tell Gass he's on probation? Is it a way to be actively involved in that team without looking like he's undermining his co-ordinator? Is it a mentorship concept? I'm not sure I've ever seen such a designation.

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