The Toronto Argonauts incoming ownership group announced today that the contracts of General Manager Jim Barker and Head Coach Scott Milanovich will be extended by 3 years when new owners Bell Canada and Kilmer Group assume control of the team at the end of the year.
“With their strong records of success and clear passion for the Argos team and fans, we are delighted that Jim Barker and Scott Milanovich have agreed to continue their leadership roles with the team,” said Dale Lastman, representative for the new ownership group and an Alternate Governor of the CFL. “Jim and Scott are clear football talents and stellar ambassadors for the club and for the Canadian game, and we look forward to working with them as a bright new era begins for the Toronto Argonauts.”
Following the Argonauts historic victory in the 100th Grey Cup in 2012, in which Barker built a team that secured Toronto’s CFL record 16th championship, he led a team of staff and players to a first place finish in the East Division in 2013. The Argonauts hosted the Eastern Final on the strength of 11 wins – the most by a Double Blue team since 2007. In December 2011, he orchestrated one of the most important trades in team history when he brought quarterback Ricky Ray to Toronto.
Commented Argonauts’ General Manager, Jim Barker, “I’m excited about the future of the organization and the commitment our incoming ownership group is making to winning football. We have faced a number of challenges the past few seasons but our team is energized and confident about the future. We’re well positioned to deliver long-term success to the fans of the Double Blue and I am very happy to be part of what we will achieve together.”
Barker continued, “Scott Milanovich is an excellent coach who is respected by the players and a proven winner. He has effectively evolved with the game as well as the players, and nobody will work harder than Scott to ensure this team reaches beyond its potential over the coming years.”
Scott Milanovich is the Argonauts’ 42nd head coach in team history. He was named the CFL Coach of the Year after leading the club to the 100th Grey Cup championship during his first season. Milanovich followed up the championship season with a first place finish in the East Division.
He has re-energized the Argos’ offence and helped to inject new life into QB Ricky Ray. Under Milanovich’s guidance, Ray has set and surpassed multiple team and league records over the past three seasons, and has been named East Division Most Outstanding Player in each of the past two years. In 2012, WR/KR Chad Owens became the first Argos player since 1998 to lead the league in receiving en route to being named the CFL’s Most Outstanding Player. The Double Blue scored more than 500 points in 2013, which was the first time since 1998.
Commented Argonauts Head Coach, Scott Milanovich, “I’m excited to be part of the long-term vision for the Argonauts and for the opportunity to continue working closely with Jim Barker. Our new ownership group is clearly committed to the team’s success. The coaching staff and I are eager to unlock the full potential of our talented Argos team and dedicated to delivering championship success for the greatest fans in the Canadian Football League.”