McManus, Goveia, Walters and more

- December 3rd, 2013

The Bombers introduced new assistant GMs Danny McManus and Ted Goveia on Tuesday, and there were lots of interesting tidbits to come out of the 20-minute session.

Here are the highlights …

• Who knows if Kyle Walters, McManus and Goveia will be able to turn things around for the Bombers because none of them has ever called the final shots for a pro team before (save for Walters’ interim stint), but at least all three have worked in the CFL recently. The same can’t be said about the last guy.

• The addition of McManus gives the Bombers some instant credibility, just from his name only. He is well liked across the league.

• I asked McManus whether he believes wide open free agent camps or invitation-only events are the way to find imports. He said he will open up camps to anyone who wants to give it a shot. “You gotta get out there and see them,” he said. “There’s players everywhere. You gotta communicate with their agents. Get them out there so you can look at them. Do they fit into what you’re looking for? But you gotta get out there. There’s too many guys out on the street who have no idea where a camp is, but we’ll be proactive. We’ll get it out on the website.”

• McManus figures 60 to 70% of Hamilton’s import roster was found through wide open free agent camps.

• Walters said McManus won’t just be the man in charge of U.S. scouting. They also plan to “school him up” on the salary cap and doing contracts. It really sounds like it’s going to be a team effort among the three.

• Goveia, who grew up in Burlington, Ont., is the lesser known of the two assistant GMs, but he gave a good first impression on Tuesday. He did a lot of work for the Argos over the last few years, so he has a pretty good feel for the management side of the football business. He was a coach for many years until becoming Toronto’s director of Canadian scouting in 2011. “I like coaching,” he said. “I coached for a long time, and it was a great experience. When I got into the CFL I got a chance to coach and meet some great people and then an opportunity to get on the scouting side … I just tried it and I enjoyed it. I enjoyed being part of putting a team together and contributing in a different way.”

• Goveia said he and McManus seem to share a football brain. “We’d always joke around because we seem to like the same type of players,” Goveia said. “We’d leave a camp and we’d be talking at some point, and some guy would end up on his neg list and I’d be joking around wondering if our offices were tapped because every time I mentioned a guy that I was thinking of putting on he would end up on Hamilton’s neg list.”

• In the CFL it’s often about who you know as opposed to what you know, and McManus and Walters were teammates with the Tiger-Cats for six years. “We had great success in Hamilton when we were together,” McManus said. “I’ve watched Kyle do the coaching ranks, I’ve watched him in the management ranks, and he’s definitely a guy you want to hook your line to because he’s going places.”

• Walters and Goveia built their relationship on the scouting path over the last few years. “You meet guys, and there’s something about them that you like and that you trust and that these are good men and they’re good at their jobs,” Walters said. “That’s where Ted and I built our relationship.”

• Walters (and likely Wade Miller) will make the call on the head coach, but McManus and Goveia will offer their two cents on the next boss as well. By the way, it really sounds like it’s going to be a choice between Mike O’Shea and George Cortez, with O’Shea still being the front-runner.

• It was originally though Goveia would take over the Canadian scouting, but Walters said he will still be the main man when it came to evaluating non-import talent. “Ted’s going to have his hands full with Danny and the U.S. scouting department and (national scout) Drew (Morris),” Walters said.

• McManus will have a big say in which quarterbacks the Bombers sign, but Walters said he won’t be coaching them. McManus will be based in his home state of Florida.

• Speaking of quarterbacks, McManus said something that made it sound like the Bombers will be waiting until after the Ottawa expansion draft to go after a pivot. “Until Ottawa makes their play, everyone has to kind of sit back and wait,” he said. “But in the CFL, that’s your number one spot. You’re going to go as far as your quarterback will take you.”

• McManus wouldn’t take credit for any particular player the Ticats found in recent years, and he won’t do that in Winnipeg, either. “We’re all in it together,” he said. “We’re all going to have a bit of it. We’re going to cross-check with each other on players. I like it that way. I’m more of a team guy and never an ‘I’ guy. That’s the way I played football, and that’s the way I do business in the personnel department. Teddy’s the same way. Kyle’s the same way. We just want to get the best guys here, and we want to do it as a we, not as a me.”

• Finally, I had to ask McManus if he could still play quarterback at the tender age of 48, and his answer proved he has a solid understanding of the CFL’s collective bargaining agreement. “Maybe a play or so,” he said, “but I told Kyle not until after the ninth game of the year so my contract is guaranteed.”

 

 

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1 comment

  1. Santhusitha says:

    Great read Kirk. You have done a excellent job of covering bombers this year. Keep up the great work

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