Millington ready to be difference

ROB LONGLEY -- Sun Media

, Last Updated: 11:05 AM ET

Often when a pro athlete's playing days are winding down, he will look to the broadcast booth for a new career in the sport.

Sean Millington is going the other way.

With the CBC about to get out of the CFL broadcast business after the 2007 season, the decorated fullback is returning to the field to help the Argos in their playoff push.

The 39-year-old Millington went through a battery of tests for team doctors yesterday and could be in the lineup as soon as Saturday when the Argos meet the Alouettes in Montreal.

"I'm trying to be the oldest running back ever to start a CFL game," Millington said with a laugh. "I'm just about there."

Millington came out of retirement once before, leaving CBC in 2005 for a brief stint with the Argos. After a slow start, the comeback effort hit a wall in Millington's seventh game when he ruptured his right Achilles tendon.

When asked yesterday about his fitness, Millington removed a windbreaker to reveal the imposing physique that made him a brute force during his 13-year playing career.

"I'll be ready in practice (today)," said Millington, a powerful ball carrier and blocker who could provide a nice complement to running back Robert Edwards. "Once I have the playbook, I'll spend the night studying it.

"I've crammed for exams before. It's not like you are teaching me a language I've never spoken."

As of last night, Millington remained unsigned pending the results of his medicals. The B.C. native did participate in the team's practice at the U of T's Erindale campus, however.

Should he be activated Saturday, Millington would return to the same Olympic Stadium where his previous comeback ended two years ago. Argos coach Mike (Pinball) Clemons contacted Millington earlier this week seeking to add depth and some veteran savvy to the ground game.

"We didn't bring a guy in who is just another guy," Clemons said. "He really could go on to be the guy who could make a difference in football games down the stretch and on into the playoffs if we're fortunate enough to get there."

A two-time outstanding Canadian, Millington earned the same honour as part of the winning B.C. Lions in the 2000 Grey Cup. Most recently he has been part of the CFL on CBC's expert panel where he pulled few punches.

"I feel that everything I've said on air was justifiable and valid at the time," Millington said when asked if he expects any payback for his commentary.

"I don't think I've been critical of any individuals specifically who I'm going to run across. Most of the guys I was critical of, harshly anyway, aren't around any more."

Until yesterday, neither was Millington.


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