Gary Crowton’s CFL stint lasts less than two seasons

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The Canadian Football League can be a place for former prominent NFL and college football figures to jump-start their careers.

The most recent example is now-Bears head coach Marc Trestman, who led the Montreal Alouettes to two CFL championships before landing with Chicago.

However, plenty of stories don’t end like Trestman’s. The CFL’s training-camp transactions are usually peppered with the departures of well-known U.S. players who couldn’t make Canadian rosters. The CFL game is no surefire springboard to Canadian success nor a one-way ticket back onto the radar of American football’s top decision-makers.

We come to the case of now-former Blue Bombers offensive coordinator/quarterbacks coach Gary Crowton, whom the club dismissed on Sunday. Crowton, who was the Bears’ offensive coordinator from 1999-2000 before moving on to BYU (head coach), Oregon, LSU and Maryland (offensive coordinator/QB coach), oversaw an offense that produced just five passing touchdowns in a 1-6 start before his dismissal.

The Bombers replaced Crowton with Marcel Bellefeuille, who has CFL coaching experience. Crowton didn’t have any upon taking the Winnipeg job. However, neither did Trestman upon taking Montreal’s coaching job. What did Trestman did have, however, was a franchise quarterback in Anthony Calvillo. The Bombers, meanwhile, have had uncertainty at quarterback throughout this season, and they lost starter Buck Pierce to injury early in 2012, too.

Would CFL experience help a coach in that league? Certainly. Could a lack of experience become a hurdle? It’s an interesting question; the Winnipeg Free Press, in a story published Wednesday, seemed to indicate that a lack of CFL seasoning was a factor with a couple of the Blue Bombers’ recent coaches.

The question now is what’s next for Crowton. Another collegiate coaching job would seem within his scope, but with the season right around the corner, that may have to wait until 2014.

10 responses to “Gary Crowton’s CFL stint lasts less than two seasons

  1. If you can’t make it in the CFL you can’t make it anywhere sadly. I wish the CFL was exciting, but its not it is like watching a b-league arena football league at best in the outdoors.

    Terrible Canadian I am.

  2. Add the CFL teams to the NFL! A late December or January game in Winnipeg would separate the men from the boys. If the NFL thinks cold weather Superbowls (R) are a great idea, one in Edmonton or Winnipeg would be totally awesome!

  3. It’s sad about Gary……..but It’s all part of the game. Gary’s post separation interview with a radio station was 1st class. He will find a job in a college or in the NFL! The CFL is awesome and has players that are just as talented as the NFL. One degree of separation for many of the players in the league.

    4 downs to make 10 yards. Sounds pretty exciting to me eh! The NFL is good, but the CFL is great.

    Oh yah………where does the oldest trophy in North America reside……..yah baby! Right in the good ol’ CFL.

    Yah all keep on posting about the good ol’ CFL.

    Mr Gary Crowton – best wishes – you will do ok. Your a class act!

  4. lol….Colt Brennan, who got embarrassed in the Sugar Bowl and flopped in the NFL called himself a “automatic starter” in the CFL and was cut by the Roughriders prior to their first preseason game. Dude is smoking meth and selling coconuts back in Hawaii last I heard.

  5. I luv me some CFL. Loved my Baltimore Stallions – 1995 Grey Cup Champions! I watch when I can and still enjoy the style of play.

  6. I don’t follow the CFL… so I looked up Calvillo.
    WOW. This guy has put up some numbers!!

    Today is his birthday also. Just turned 41. How
    many NFL players are still successful at 41?

    Much respect…

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