The Argonauts are hoping Scott Milanovich can bring some of that Montreal Alouettes offensive power to Toronto.
A CFL source said on Friday night that Milanovich, the Alsí offensive co-ordinator the past two seasons, is expected to take the Argosí offer to become their new head coach.
What the offer to Milanovich, believed to be for two years, indicates on the ownership front is not clear. Argos president Bob Nicholson has said that a new coach and owner could be announced at the same time, which means that David Braley could be poised to take over from David Cynamon and Howard Sokolowski. That has been the expectation all winter, even as Cynamon and Sokolowski tried and failed to bring on a new partner.
Prior to winning the Grey Cup in November, the Als led the CFL in most of the major offensive categories during the 2009 regular season, using a superior passing game to earn a 15-3 record.
Milanovich gave way to head coach Marc Trestman when it came to calling plays, but he played an integral role in helping build an offence that was mostly responsible for 600 points, nearly double the 328 the sadsack Argos had under Bart Andrus. Too bad Milanovich canít bring quarterback Anthony Calvillo with him, though offensive line coach Jonathan Himebauch could come to Toronto as well.
Milanovich, 37, is a former quarterback who had stints in the NFL, CFL and NFL Europe. Sources had indicated the Argos were concerned about his lack of head coaching experience, but obviously it was not enough to sour their interest. There had been thoughts that the leading candidates were Doug Berry and George Cortez, but the latter reportedly is going to join the Buffalo Bills. Itís unclear why Berry was nudged out of the picture.
A native of Butler, Pa., Milanovich spent four seasons at Maryland before embarking on a pro career. He joined the Als staff in 2007 as quarterbacks coach and last year also was named an assistant coach.
Messages left on Friday night with Milanovich and his agent, as well as Argos general manager Adam Rita and Nicholson, were not returned.
Toronto was 3-15 with Andrus at the helm, leading to his firing in December. Milanovich would be the Argosí fourth coach in less than two years, following Andrus, Don Matthews and Rich Stubler.
The Argos are 7-29 in the past two seasons, missing the playoffs both years.
The Toronto Sun has learned, meanwhile, that the Edmonton Eskimos will be the Argosí opponent for the neutral site game in Moncton, N.B., in September.
The Argos will open the 2010 CFL regular season on July 1 in Calgary against the Stampeders. Earlier that day, the Alouettes will meet the team they beat in the Grey Cup, the Saskatchewan
Roughriders, in Regina to kick off the season. On July 2, the Hamilton Tiger-Cats will visit the Winnipeg Blue Bombers, while the B.C. Lions and Eskimos will meet in Edmonton on July 4. The full CFL schedule will be released Monday.