Ticats find home on Calgary turf

IAN BUSBY -- Calgary Sun

, Last Updated: 11:00 AM ET

David Corley's painful first CFL experience only allowed him to learn about one thing: Losing.

The man under whom he apprenticed for the Hamilton Tiger-Cats in 2003 is once again one of his football instructors -- this time with much more confidence they won't be bottom-feeders in the league.

Danny McManus was brought in to help mentor young quarterbacks with the Calgary Stampeders and he plans on helping Corley -- currently pencilled in as the third-stringer -- more than he was able to during the 1-17 campaign with the Ticats.

"It was a bad year to be a rookie," said the veteran McManus. "We were trying everything but the new guys. When you only win one game, it was a situation where it's not good for anybody on the ball club.

"The change came in and David was on the outside looking in. That's what happens."

Yesterday was the first day of training camp and already the Stamps have shown confidence in Corley. The club released last year's third-string QB Danny Wimprine, so Corley is taking a third of the reps on offence.

McManus sees several similarities in Corley and No. 1 pivot Henry Burris, most notably the ability to think and throw on the run.

"He has a strong arm and is a very intelligent kid," McManus said. "He's very eager to go out there and perform well.

"He has the feet to move and can throw on the run very well. My escapeability is more inside the pocket, left to right. These two guys can escape around the corners and down the field."

Corley dressed for all 18 miserable games of 2003, throwing passes in five of them, but was released by the Ticats in the 2004 training camp.

After bouncing around different arena leagues for the past two years, the 26-year-old is excited to be reunited with McManus, who isn't the type to keep quiet when he sees the opportunity to offer advice.

"He has a tremendous amount of knowledge. He sees things a lot faster than somebody my age," Corley said. "He knows what's happening right before it happens.

"It's better not having to go through things on your own because he can kind of say don't do this or do that. It's like a big brother."

Lucky he didn't say father figure about the soon-to-be 41-year-old. Communication is key between all the quarterbacks and McManus is pleased at how well he, Corley and Burris work things out verbally.

After each passing drill, the trio discuss routes and throws, trying to get timing down.

The openness to learn by the proteges makes McManus' job as mentor easier.

"The guys who want to learn and ask questions, those are the ones you want," McManus said. "I've been around guys who don't ask questions. You will never know it all. I still learn things every day."

Burris has stressed to Corley to make the best of each and every throw.

"He still has to go out there and execute at a high level -- show progression and improvement throughout camp," Burris said.


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