Blue Bomber Report Record: 6–11–0

Winnipeg Free Press - PRINT EDITION

Crowton back to operate offence

  • Print

LOST amid the drama on Thursday was the news that another critical piece of the Blue Bombers brain trust will also return in 2013 -- offensive co-ordinator Gary Crowton.

Burke offered Crowton the job for next season even before Burke had signed a new contract Thursday morning, testimony to how much faith he has in Crowton.

Bombers Scores

Powered by Sports Direct Inc.

"He's got an excellent mind," Burke said Thursday, ticking off the highlights of Crowton's resumé -- offensive co-ordinator in the NFL; offensive co-ordinator of a NCAA national champion; NCAA head coach. "He's one of the brightest minds in football. I have tremendous respect for him...

"I make this prediction. He's going to do a great job and he'll be a head coach in this league, if he wants to be."

While the Bombers offence struggled through the first half of the season as the revolving door at quarterback spun, Crowton's scheme gained traction in the latter half of the season and was, by several different measures, the leading offence in the CFL in the five games prior to the loss in Hamilton last weekend that eliminated the Bombers from the playoffs.

"I want to come back. We've got some things going," Crowton said this week. "And I feel like, especially the latter part of the season, we've been starting to get things going in the right direction. I'd like to continue to finish what we started.

"That's what our goal is. That was my goal from the beginning, to get there by the end of the year. I wished I'd got there sooner, but right now I feel like we're going in the right direction."

Asked what the turning point was, Crowton pointed directly to the moment in late August when the club fired head coach Paul LaPolice, who players and coaches have since said was meddling in the offence.

"When I first took over after coach LaPolice left, I made a decision to change some things that I felt might take some time... Obviously we didn't look very good in a couple of those early games, but I believed in what we were doing."

The Bombers lost the first three games after LaPolice was fired -- twice in embarrassing blowouts -- but Crowton said he felt like the series of what he described as "subtle changes" he implemented began to take root after that.

"I think probably every game got a little bit better. The first game against Saskatchewan was terrible, the next one was a little better... I just felt the more I was working on things, the more I was watching, the more the players were seeing what I wanted to do.

"They're just subtle changes -- angles of routes, whether we stay on the route or break it off -- stuff like that. I gave the quarterbacks a few more options at the line of scrimmage. With Buck, I could do that. And the young guys were starting to get it too."

Republished from the Winnipeg Free Press print edition November 2, 2012 C3

Fact Check

Fact Check

Have you found an error, or know of something we’ve missed in one of our stories?
Please use the form below and let us know.

* Required
  • Please post the headline of the story or the title of the video with the error.

  • Please post exactly what was wrong with the story.

  • Please indicate your source for the correct information.

  • Yes


  • This will only be used to contact you if we have a question about your submission, it will not be used to identify you or be published.

  • Cancel

Having problems with the form?

Contact Us Directly
  • Print

You can comment on most stories on You can also agree or disagree with other comments. All you need to do is be a Winnipeg Free Press print or e-edition subscriber to join the conversation and give your feedback.

You can comment on most stories on You can also agree or disagree with other comments. All you need to do is be a Winnipeg Free Press print or e-edition subscriber to join the conversation and give your feedback.

Have Your Say

New to commenting? Check out our Frequently Asked Questions.

Have Your Say

Comments are open to Winnipeg Free Press print or e-edition subscribers only. why?

Have Your Say

Comments are open to Winnipeg Free Press Subscribers only. why?

The Winnipeg Free Press does not necessarily endorse any of the views posted. By submitting your comment, you agree to our Terms and Conditions. These terms were revised effective April 16, 2010.


Make text: Larger | Smaller


Have a Cheapskate Halloween

View more like this

Photo Store Gallery

  • JOE BRYKSA/WINNIPEG FREE PRESS Local- A large osprey lands in it's nest in a hydro pole on Hyw 59  near the Hillside Beach turnoff turn off. Osprey a large narrow winged hawk which can have a wingspan of over 54 inches are making a incredible recovery since pesticide use of the 1950's and  1960's- For the last two decades these fish hawks have been reappearing in the Lake Winnipeg area- Aug 03, 2005
  • PHIL.HOSSACK@FREEPRESS.MB.CA 090728 / WINNIPEG FREE PRESS White Pelicans belly up to the sushi bar Tuesday afternoon at Lockport. One of North America's largest birds is a common sight along the Red RIver and on Lake Winnipeg. Here the fight each other for fish near the base of Red RIver's control structure, giving human fisher's downstream a run for their money.

View More Gallery Photos



Where do you think the Bombers need the biggest improvement during the off-season?

View Results

Ads by Google