Colton Hunchak looking for breakout season after moving in with Bo Levi Mitchell in May

Photo courtesy: Scott Grant |

Colton Hunchak is looking to have a breakout season with the Calgary Stampeders after spending the past two months getting to know his quarterback extremely well.

Bo Levi Mitchell’s young family is living in the United States, so he asked Hunchak if he’d like to move into his house two months ago. The pair have been building a strong off-field relationship and working hard to improve ahead of the 2021 season.

“We both felt that we wanted to work out with each other and push each other, so it was a really good opportunity for me,” said Hunchak. “I jumped on that right away and even just off the field stuff, seeing how he goes on a day-to-day basis as a pro, that championship mentality day in and day out, it’s great and it’s trickling off onto me.”

Hunchak gained some unwanted weight during the pandemic, but lost the extra pounds after moving in with Mitchell and improving his lifestyle. He looks up to Mitchell not just as a professional athlete, but also as a leader and father.

“He’s just such a genuine guy. He’s helping me out in all aspects, not even just with football, too — just with life. I’m a young father as well, so I definitely look up to him. He’s a great father and has a great family. He’s been a great leader for me on and off the field,” said Hunchak.

Mitchell recently told the media that he plans not to lean as heavily on big names this season following the departures of Juwan Brescacin, Eric Rogers, and DaVaris Daniels. Kamar Jorden is the only marquee name left in Calgary’s receiving corps, leaving players like Hunchak the opportunity to grow into a larger role.

Building a strong relationship with Mitchell could be a key to allowing Hunchak to become more productive.

“You just gotta see the same thing that Bo’s seeing. You gotta read coverages and know the rules of different routes off the coverages. Bo’s great with reading your body language, so if you just be definitive and really know your job within different defensive coverages, you’re going to be good,” said Hunchak.

The Calgary native had a strong final season with the York Lions in 2018 when he caught 63 passes for 681 yards and seven touchdowns in eight games. He was the final pick of the 2019 CFL Draft at No. 73 overall and had an impressive rookie season with the Stamps that year, making 16 receptions for 231 yards in fourteen games.

With plenty of snaps available in Calgary’s receiving corps this year, don’t be surprised if Hunchak’s production skyrockets.

John Hodge is a Canadian football reporter based in Winnipeg.