Co-ordinator effort

KIRK PENTON, SUN MEDIA

, Last Updated: 7:55 AM ET

Doug Berry has invited all seven of his assistant coaches back for the 2008 CFL season.

How many of them will return to the Winnipeg Blue Bombers is up in the air.

Defensive co-ordinator Greg Marshall is a serious contender for the Montreal Alouettes head coaching position, while others may pursue jobs in the NFL.

"Somebody's going to go. I've got that feeling," Berry said. "If everybody comes back I'm real happy."

Most notably, Berry's decision means special teams and running backs coach Cory McDiarmid will keep his job if he wants it.

HAD TROUBLES

The Bombers special teams had their troubles this year, to say the least, but Berry believes that was because of factors other than coaching.

"I know that we weren't as good as we need to be on special teams, but so does Cory," Berry said. "I felt all year long that he had the attention of players, whether it be in meetings or on the field. We never lost the players.

"Some of the things that happened this year were so obtuse ... As things happened to our guys, they learned. The last four or five games we were as good on special teams as anybody was in the league."

Berry also felt personnel played a role in the foibles.

"What everybody loses sight of is we lost some very significant special teams players from 2006 to 2007, namely Graeme Bell, Shawn Gallant and Scott Regimbald," Berry said. "Right off the top of my head, those were three significant Canadian players that were huge for us in 2006, and we never saw them in 2007.

"Initially some of the things that we tried to do were based on maybe those guys' abilities, and we couldn't get everything done that we wanted to, so we made the adjustments as the year went along."

The other Bomber assistants, some of whom have a year remaining on their contracts, are Kit Cartwright (offensive co-ordinator), Richard Harris (defensive line), Corey Chamblin (defensive backs), Bob Wylie (offensive line) and Bob Dyce (receivers).

Berry hinted that Wylie, the architect of arguably the CFL's best offensive line in 2007, might not be back next season.

"He's so used to NFL money, it's awfully hard to entice him to stay on CFL money," he said. "As much as I would love to have him back -- and the players loved him and he did a great job -- I'm not sure if Bob can suck it up another year."


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