Als dump Berry pal

KIRK PENTON -- Winnipeg Sun

, Last Updated: 9:22 AM ET

The fact that Kevin Strasser is now out of a job doesn't mean he will end up on the Winnipeg Blue Bombers coaching staff any time soon, according to head coach Doug Berry.

The Montreal Alouettes fired Strasser yesterday, which means six of the CFL's eight offensive co-ordinators who started the 2006 season won't be in the same position in 2007.

"I said to (Winnipeg OC) Mike Gibson, 'You and (B.C.'s) Jacques Chapdelaine are the only two offensive co-ordinators to survive this year,' " Berry said yesterday. "It's unbelievable. It is unbelievable."

Berry said earlier this week that he wanted to retain his entire coaching staff, and that was still the case yesterday, even though Berry and Strasser spent four seasons together in Montreal.

"I like Kevin Strasser," Berry said. "I certainly respect him, he's innovative, and he's bright. I enjoyed working with him.

"But they obviously feel they've gotta go in a different direction for whatever their reasons are," he added with a chuckle, "and I can't comment on those."

Toronto (Kent Austin), Hamilton (Joe Paopao) and Calgary (Steve Buratto) all fired their OCs in the last five months.

Saskatchewan's Tommy Condell is likely out after Danny Barrett was fired last week, and Edmonton head coach Danny Maciocia is relinquishing the offensive duties.

Berry can't believe that there is so much turnover at the position.

"I have no idea," he said. "Why does Calgary get rid of Steve Buratto? What were they, one or two in total offence in the CFL? And Montreal and Strasser ..."

And even though the Bombers were in the bottom half of the league when it came to offensive output in 2006, Berry is sticking behind Gibson.

"If I felt that that was an issue, that he couldn't do the job ... I feel real comfortable with him," Berry said. "If Mike wants to go some place else, that's fine. Believe me, I was as hard on poor Mike this year as anybody was, because I'm trying to get him to think like me as fast as I can.

"Now that we have a whole year together, I expect things between us, as a staff, to be that much smoother going into next year. And if Mike were to move on, certainly Kevin would be somebody I'd be very interested in."

AROUND THE LEAGUE: The Edmonton Eskimos re-signed running back Mike Bradley yesterday, and they also inked former B.C. Lions tailback Antonio Warren ... The Saskatchewan Roughriders have signed receiver Andy Fantuz and placekicker Luca Congi to contract extensions.


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