Bo Levi Mitchell’s 66 receivers spark awesome trip down memory lane

Photo courtesy: Bob Butrym

The Calgary Stampeders are celebrating Bo Levi Mitchell’s rapid approach to 30,000 career passing yards, which he’s expected to hit on Friday night.

The two-time CFL Most Outstanding Player has thrown for 29,986 yards over his nine-year career, which means he should reach the milestone in the first quarter against the Ottawa Redblacks at TD Place.

The club compiled a list of all 66 players who have caught a pass from Mitchell over the course of his career and it provided us with an awesome trip down memory lane.

Photo courtesy: Calgary Stampeders (@calstampeders)

At the top of the list is retired all-star Marquay McDaniel, who played with Mitchell for six seasons and now serves as the club’s receivers coach. Eric Rogers, Kamar Jorden, and DaVaris Daniels round out the top-four, all of whom are still active players and household names across the league.

Reggie Begelton (No. 6) and Marken Michel (No. 8) both got NFL looks following their tenure in Calgary with the latter currently holding a spot on Washington’s practice roster. Joe West (No. 9) and Jeff Fuller (No. 10) battled injuries in Calgary and ended up fading down the stretch after promising starts to their CFL careers.

Maurice Price (No. 16) is the receiver everyone seems to forget about Ottawa acquiring in 2015 when they also signed Chris Williams, Greg Ellingson, Ernest Jackson, and Brad Sinopoli. Rider fans may remember him as one of the first players Chris Jones traded for as the team’s general manager in 2016, though he retired after collecting a signing bonus.

Jerome Messam (No. 15) and Jon Cornish (No. 22) are two of the greatest Canadian running backs in CFL history, while Brad Sinopoli (No. 25) is arguably the best Canadian receiver of his generation. Rob Cote (No. 21) was an underrated fullback who overlapped with Mitchell for six years in Cowtown.

Simon Charbonneau-Campeau (No. 19) sits surprisingly high for a little-targeted Canadian out of Sherbrooke who was acquired via trade from Hamilton in 2014. He was six-foot-four and the only thing longer than his wingspan was his last name.

Nik Lewis (No. 20) is the league’s all-time receptions leader, though he only overlapped with Mitchell for three seasons. He missed large chunks of the 2013 and 2014 seasons due to injury, which is why he doesn’t rank higher on this list.

Chris Matthews (No. 27) ranks shockingly high for a player who only played four games as a Stampeder after joining them late in 2018 for their Grey Cup run. Roy Finch (No. 33) was a budding star before his career was cut short in May 2018 after he was arrested in Edmond, Okla.

Luther Hakunavanhu (No. 35) was a fifth-round 2021 CFL Draft pick out of York who unexpectedly made the team in training camp. He’s dressed for just three games this year but has managed to make a 74-yard catch and score a slick touchdown against the B.C. Lions.

Rory Kohlert (No. 42) was a sure-handed target who spent almost his entire career with Winnipeg before playing one final season with the Stamps in 2017. Greg Carr (No. 46) played just four games in Calgary following stints in Winnipeg, Edmonton, and Saskatchewan and remains one of the tallest receivers in league history at six-foot-six.

Kenny Stafford (No. 54) is mostly remembered as a member of the Edmonton Elks — though he’s currently on Ottawa’s roster — but actually broke into the league with Calgary in 2013. He appeared in only four games, making six catches.

Romby Bryant (No. 58) was a prolific receiver in Calgary for four years, recording 210 catches for 3,025 yards. Mitchell’s passes accounted for 0.3 percent of these yards with eight.

Dan Federkeil (No. 49) and Spencer Wilson (No. 65) are retired offensive linemen, while Corey Mace (No. 66) is a retired defensive tackle. Mace has been the team’s defensive line coach since 2016, which means the two players that bookend Mitchell’s 66 receivers are currently on Calgary’s coaching staff.

Thanks to the Stamps for the trip down memory lane and congratulations to Mitchell on (almost) reaching the 30,000-yard mark on his career.

John Hodge is a Canadian football reporter based in Winnipeg.