All class, right to the end: Beswick retires a Ticat

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Veteran linebacker and special teams ace Marc Beswick retired on Friday after six stellar years in Ticat uniform. He was a quiet, largely unheralded player who had a tremendous impact both on the field an in the locker room. Here are six things to know about him.

1. He’s 32-years-old and wanted to keep playing but didn’t think his body would allow him to do so.

“The way the team is going, this is a very hard decision but it was the right time for me,” he said. “I always said if I couldn’t play at the highest level, I wouldn’t do it.”

2. He was an East Division All-Star and the East Division’s Most Outstanding Special Teams Player in 2013 and finishes his Tiger-Cats career tied with Rob Hithcock for the all-time franchise lead in special teams tackles with 122. He says he’s fine sharing the record.

“To me, the impact I’ve made in the locker room and in the community is more important than the tackles,” he said.

3. Beswick served as a special teams captain and a defacto on-field assistant coach for the last several seasons. Many think he could coach special teams in the league but he’s not so sure.

“It’s different when you’re the coach and they depend on you. I’d want to make sure that I can live up to that and I’d still have a lot to learn,” he said. “But if an opportunity arose, I’d think about it.”

4. In the meantime, Beswick will spend time with his two sons and continue to serve as a counsellor for at-risk youth in his hometown of Vancouver. It’s a job he’s held in the off-season for several years.

“It’s the next thing I want to do in life and I’m looking forward to it,” he said.

5. Beswick was selected by the Winnipeg Blue Bombers in the fourth round of the 2008 CFL draft but was released after one-season. He joined the Ticats as a free agent, playing in 103 regular season games and 10 playoff games.

“That’s why I’ll always be grateful to Hamilton – they gave me an opportunity and that’s all I wanted,” he said. “I had opportunities to go elsewhere in free agency but I loved it in Hamilton and they were great to me since day one. It was a goal of mine to retire a Ticat and now I get to do that.”

6. He has only one regret.

“Not winning a Grey Cup in Hamilton. Other than that, I feel like I gave the game as much as I had in me,” he said. “I want my legacy to be a guy who gave 110 per cent and nothing less.”