Stamps seek inner road warrior

IAN BUSBY -- Calgary Sun

, Last Updated: 9:05 AM ET

Henry Burris' home is filled with the toddler noise, so the Stampeders quarterback checks into a Calgary hotel the night before games this season.

So scratch the theory waking up in a strange bed has a detrimental effect on Burris and how he runs the offence away from McMahon Stadium.

The Stamps are scratching their collective heads looking for answers for why their road record took a 180-degree turn from 2005.

The 10-7 Stamps are 2-6 on the road this season. Last year, they posted a 6-3 mark away from McMahon.

Heading into the final regular-season contest Saturday against Winnipeg, Burris stressed this is an important test for the offence to prove it can perform in hostile territory.

"Last year, we got off to much better starts on the road," said Burris.

"When we make mistakes, most of them have occurred on the road."

Of the first eight road games, Calgary has only performed well offensively in two of them, the first trip to Saskatchewan and in Montreal. It's a different story at home where the Stamps went 8-1.

Even when the Stamps weren't clicking against the visiting B.C. Lions Sunday and were down by four points in the second quarter, receiver Ken-Yon Rambo sparked the team by making a couple moves for a 46-yard touchdown reception. The Stamps haven't found those momentum-building plays as easily in opposing barns.

"I don't have an answer for it," said offensive co-ordinator Steve Buratto.

Head coach Tom Higgins has tried to reverse the club's fortunes on the road by switching meeting schedules before the game.

Players meet right before curfew to send everyone to bed focused.

It hasn't worked because Calgary has lost three straight on the road.

"Our guys are very well behaved and there's no explanation for why we don't have success," Higgins said. "We might as well not stay status quo and see if we can make something work.

"It's not that we're superstitious because you can crippled by that.

"What we did last year didn't work this year and now we're trying to mix things up."

EXTRA POINTS:

Danny Maciocia said yesterday he will remain head coach of the Edmonton Eskimos next season despite missing the playoffs this year ... Stamps DB Jermaine Chatman will miss the rest of the season with a broken arm. The injury occurred in the fourth quarter when Lions SB Jason Clermont's leg came up and hit Chatman after Clermont blocked the halfback's blitz ... LB John Grace could skip the trip to Winnipeg with a calf injury but Cornelius Anthony returned to practice yesterday along with safety Trey Young... The CFL has set a 2 p.m. kickoff for the Stamps/'Riders West semifinal Nov. 5.


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