VP of FO search down to 4

According to the FP and Sun as well as CJOB, the Bombers have narrowed the search for a Vice President of Football Operations down to four - Joe Mack, Jim Barker, Brendan Taman and Ross Hodgkinson. I'm disappointed that John Murphy wasn't on that list and I hope we don't lose him. Of the four, I would prefer the job NOT go to Taman or Hodgkinson.


I'd have to agree that Taman and Hodgkinson should be rated 3 and 4, in whichever order.

Mack I know very little about so won't express an opinion.

Jim Barker I've always liked. If he got the job, the optics are kind of cool; Bauer goes from Winnipeg to Calgary and Barker goes from Calgary to Winnipeg. My guess would be that Winnipeg wins that little "trade".

After the Pacman Jones thing and the "networking" of amatueurs (spygate) I am not surprised Murphy would not make the cut. He's shown some nice things but he's been on the job for less than a year. In the end it will be up to him to decide his future with the Bombers but as you can see, if he was in high demand, he would have used his "clause" and walked. He may very well be a GM one day but he's not one earned the position, yet anyway. Joe Mack is older but as a guy who apologized to Mr. Obilovich for judging him because of his "old" age I am not about to do that again...He's from the North Carolina football lineage (very good), he is respected, he's held some pretty tough jobs in the NFL but none to 'great" success. I am excited to see how this all plays out.

You should clarify your definition of "great success". He was director of pro personnel with the Redskins when they won the Super Bowl in 1992. He was also assistant pro personnel director for the Panthers starting in their expansion season and they went to the NFC title game 1 year later. He was thought highly enough in the NFL that 2 different expansion teams brought him in for their 1st seasons.

He also won a Cup in Winnipeg in his first stint with the team, and we won another mostly with his players the year after he left.

Barker would be the best choice. His strength is finding talent, both import and Canadian. And he hasn't been out of the league a long time, like Mack.

But the Bombers should also seriously consider which GM candidate can give them access to the best young American QB prospects, because what the Bombers have at QB right now is just not going to be good enough in 2010. So maybe that factor will tip the scales in favor of Mack, who has more obvious and recent NFL connections than Barker (i.e. maybe Mack can lure a #2 or #3 QB away from one of the NFL teams he has worked for?)

...Mack is rumoured to be the leading candidate.....with Taman and Hodkinson bringing up the rear..Barker is a very solid candidate and could be a suprise.....sooooooo in my process of elimination it's probably between Mack and Barker....We win with either guy....I've got a feeling that Asper would like to see Mack as his GM.....David knows first hand of Macks success having seen his work in the Peg and would be very comfortable with him......He knows of his connections in the states ,although he hasn't had hands- on for a few years .. BUT has apparently kept touch...I've got a feeling that Mack will edge out Barker and will bring a wealth of experience and success to the Bomber organization...First things first though and IF this is an eventuality then the head coach hiring would be next...I think either Mack or Barker would lean towards Cortez as the man...and Murphy may be lost (tough one) in the shuffle ...possibly heading off to argoland when Rita is dealt the nine of hearts...Hey ...THIS IS GETTING EXCITING... :wink: :thup:

I wonder what happened with Higgins and McCarthy who had both expressed interest in the position. It doesn't say anything about either of them even being contacted.

(probably old news) but Taman is out.


...GREAT NEWS...... :thup: :wink:

Arash Madani at Sportsnet is claiming that Taman was offered the Winnipeg position last week.

Sources tell Sportsnet that Taman, a Saskatoon native, was presented with an offer from the Blue Bombers to return to his old post as GM. ... Winnipeg had Taman at the top of their list, contrary to published reports Wednesday. While Jim Barker and Joe Mack were favourites of some on the board, Taman was actually offered the general manager position with the Blue Bombers and was the franchise's No. 1 target.

Personally I don't believe that for a second. I find it difficult to believe that Taman could actually be offered the position and no member of the Winnipeg media report it. The BoD hasn't even met yet to discuss the findings of the search committee so it's highly unlikely an offer was made.

Blue Blood I'd agree with you but with one caveat. . . you are saying that you don't buy this report because none of the Winnipeg media have reported it? Aren't you one of the ones who are very critical of the Winnipeg sports media? Seems like you're changing gears here. .

It makes a lot of sense because the minute Tillman quit, the Bombers knew if they wanted Taman they had to make it quick or possibly the Riders gave them a deadline telling the Bombers board they had x amount of time and after that they would offer a promotion to Taman.

It also makes sense that they would have wanted to keep that secret not to jeapordize their hiring process. I have a strong suspicion they will go with Barker. Joe Mack as been pretty much retired for 8 years and out of the CFL for 20 some years, he would be seen as an outsider and his "rolodex" has probably not been imported to Outlook or Act... Too risky IMO.

Not changing gears. I'm still critical of the Winnipeg media and take their reports with unnamed sources with a big dose of salt. I just believe that if members of the Winnipeg media had heard that Taman had been offered the position they would have been shouting it from the rooftops with trumpets heralding the announcement and fireworks going off in the night sky because he is their darling. I find it difficult to believe that all of Taman's fans in the Winnipeg media would have not known about or, if they did know about it, that they would not have reported it.

So the BoD is meeting Thursday evening to make a decision and according to the one and only Paul Friesen the selection committee is split between Barker and Mack.

Expect the Winnipeg Blue Bombers to have a new GM in place Friday.

His name? Depends on which camp is more convincing at a meeting of the Bomber board of directors Thursday night.

QMI Agency has learned that the four-person search committee is split down the middle, with one side ready to recommend Calgary executive Jim Barker, one pushing for Joe Mack, the old Winnipeg personnel man from the 1980s.

The search committee — board members Paul Robson, Joe Poplawski, Bill Watchorn and Gene Dunn — will make its recommendation(s) at what promises to be a contentious meeting of the full board tonight.

Whichever side is more convincing will win out, and the Bombers will then call a news conference for Friday, at which they’ll introduce the new football boss.

One thing is certain: the process to fill the GM position, and by extension that of head coach, has been a fractious one, creating all kinds of rifts among the volunteer board members.

That news about the process continues to leak out only exacerbates the situation.

“These comments, which are attributed to the board, are very divisive to the board,? one source said. “I’d be really disappointed if they were. I mean, the board operates fundamentally on trust.?

Perhaps we should be happy the different agendas of the search committee members have produced just two finalists, and not four. Now that’d be a real mess.

One source says the committee has discussed with Barker a three-year contract with the title vice-president of football operations/GM, with a team option for a three-year extension.

The source also says Barker would hire Montreal offensive co-ordinator Scott Milanovich as his head coach within days. The team reportedly asked the Alouettes for permission to speak with Milanovich earlier this week.

Barker also impressed the board with his potential choice of a player personnel director, the source said, suggesting current bird dog John Murphy is on the way out.

The other finalist for the GM position, Mack, has been pushed hard by Robson, the former Bomber GM from the 1980s. Mack was Robson’s personnel guy from 1984 through ’86.

Robson wields considerable power on the board, but there are those who feel Mack has been out of the CFL too long (since ’87) to be handed the reins.

His NFL experience is extensive, but through most of the last decade he’s been without a regular job in the NFL.

It’s not clear who Mack’s choice of head coach would be. Regardless, he’d be a bit more of a gamble than Barker,

who’s been with the Calgary Stampeders the last five years, and in the CFL for 10, including a stint as head coach.

Barker has had to defer some decisions to head coach/GM John Hufnagel the last two years. His Winnipeg job description would give him full control of the football operation.

It would also remove him from the never-ending grind of the personnel wars, which, in an interview with QMI Agency last year, Barker admitted can get to a guy.

“In this job, you’re never off,? he said. “I can understand how, over a long haul, it can get tedious. It’s just a constant striving to get better. That can drain you.?

A source says members of the search committee are also high on Barker’s public relations skills, a must since the PR disaster that was Mike Kelly last season.

Barker is seen as someone who could reconnect the team with the community, through speaking engagements and connections to youth football. He’s a longtime coach at many levels, with a physical education background.

You’d think this decision would be easy if all the board members simply had the team’s best interests at heart. But apparently it’s gotten personal for some of them.

Right now, given the choices, I’d say Barker is the best thing for this team.

Sadly, that’s no guarantee he’ll be hired.


My preference would be for Barker over Mack because of Mack’s being out of football for so long however I was really, really disappointed to read that Murphy may be let go if Barker is hired. All I can say is that if that happens then Barker’s player personnel director better be pretty darned spectacular or he will have some very, very unhappy fans to deal with.

Barker's obviously got the inside track on this job and his current status in the CFL has enabled him to already make deals with Milanovich and an unnamed head scout. Probably Joey Abrams or maybe Dave Dickenson. That's why guys get recycled in our league. Also makes things very easy for the board...

Mack may very well be a very good candidate as well but like the author says why has he been out of football for almost a decade ?

In all this Toronto is likely to lose their first choice for a new HC because of a disfunctional ownership.

If the Bombers hire Barker, and consequently get Milanovich for a HC, as well as a very credible, hand-picked-Barker-guy for personnel, it is a good, safe move that will help the team. Hiring Mack, on the other hand, is a move that comes with a lot of question marks attached to it.

I think we’ll see Barker hired on Friday. Then talks with Montreal to aquire MacPherson will no doubt start in earnest. I’m thinking that deal will get done before the CFL draft, because the Bombers will almost certainly have to trade their 1st round selection (among other assets) to get MacPherson.

Then I would be shocked if the Bombers didn’t throw big coin at Watkins if he makes it to free agency.

According to Bob Irving this morning, he said that the board is meeting tonight. Apparently the selection commitee is going to recommend Mack.

Bob Irving apparently reported this morning that the selection committee is going to recommend Mack.

If Mack gets hired in Winnipeg, and, consequently, Milanovich goes to Toronto instead (along with MacPherson and Watkins), I don't know if I would be happy, Bomber fans.

There is always the Mack/Trestman connection that could come through and deliver Milanovich to Winnipeg as HC, but I'm thinking Mack has a name no one has discussed in mind for Bomber HC (not always a good thing...see Bart Andrus).

.....according to a source....Mack says he doesn't want to reside in Wpg. .....not a positive....I personally don't like the sound of that....IF he can take Aspers dough (which will likely be the case in the future)...how come he can't live in the Peg along with the Aspers....Sounds like he'll be a 'cell-phone' gm/vp.... :roll: :roll: I guess it could work??????? Technically Bauer didn't reside in Winnipeg....sooooooo ....what do ya think guys... :roll: