REGINA, SK- In a special presentation held today at the Delta Hotel in Regina, Saskatchewan, Toronto Argonauts Head Coach, Scott Milanovich was named the 2012 CFL Coach of the Year.
The announcement marks the second time an Argos head coach has won the coveted Annis Stukus trophy in the last three CFL seasons (Jim Barker, 2010), and Milanovich becomes the sixth different Double Blue head coach in the team’s 140-year history to take home the award (Barker in 2010, Don Matthews in 1997, Adam Rita in 1991, Bob O’Billovich in 1982 & 1987 and Leo Cahill in 1971).
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Commented Toronto Argonauts General Manager, Jim Barker, “On behalf of the entire organization, I would like to congratulate Scott Milanovich on being named CFL Coach of the Year. As a player, Scott showed all of the qualities needed to be an outstanding head coach. After he retired from the game, he paid his dues and did everything good coaches have to do to develop their skills. He’s taken the best from everyone he’s worked with and learned how to incorporate all of those positive characteristics into his own style. Scott has quickly become one of the top, young coaches in North America, and our entire football team couldn’t be happier for him.”
In his first season as a head coach, Milanovich led a young group of players to the 100th Grey Cup championship on their home field at Rogers Centre. After the team finished last in the division a year earlier, Milanovich led the Boatmen to second place in the CFL Eastern Division. The organization hosted a playoff game for the first time since 2007, and Milanovich commanded accountability and attention to detail from the players while reintroducing exciting and explosive football to the city of Toronto.
Under Milanovich, 2012 CFL Most Outstanding Player, SB/KR Chad Owens andSB Andre Durie had career years, while rookies WR Dontrelle Inman andLB Marcus Ball emerged as legitimate threats on offence and defence, respectively. 100th Grey Cup MVP RB Chad Kackert became the feature back and flourished in Milanovich’s system. A former quarterback himself, Milanovich led QB Ricky Ray to a prolific season. Ray finished the year with his best completion percentage (68.6) and QB rating (99.8) since the 2008 season, and during the Club’s post-season run he attained a completion percentage of 71.1 while throwing for 869 yards, five (5) touchdowns, with only one (1) interception, in three (3) games.
Commented Toronto Argonauts Executive Chairman & CEO, Chris Rudge, “Today is a very exciting day for Coach Milanovich, our fans, and our entire organization. We are pleased to be able to share in his achievement and add to the many successes Scott’s hard work and leadership have already produced for our football club.”
Milanovich joins former Argonauts head coach Adam Rita as the only Toronto rookie head coach to win a Grey Cup title (1991). He also becomes the first CFL rookie head coach since John Hufnagel (2008) to win a Grey Cup championship and be named CFL Coach of the Year.
Milanovich earned 34 votes from the 45 voting members of the Football Reporters of Canada and was against fellow finalists Mike Benevidesof the B.C. Lionsand John Hufnagelof theCalgary Stampeders for this award.