Mike McCullough

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Born in Kingston, Ontario, Mike McCullough started his football career in college at St. Francis Xavier University. He played four seasons with St. Xavier and was named a AUFC defensive all star in his senior year with 45 defensive tackles (5th in AUFC), five quarterback sacks (2nd in AUFC) and 12 tackles for losses (1st in AUFC) including 2 forced fumbles. Mike also excelled academically and was an academic all-star in his senior year.

Mike was drafted by the Saskatchewan Roughriders in 2003 and led the team in special teams with 15 tackles in his rookie year. He continued to be a key contributor on special teams throughout 2004 with four special team tackles in the West Division Semi-Final and three special team tackles in the West Division Final. In 2005 Mike started one regular season game and the Eastern Semi-Final at middle linebacker with three defensive tackles in the Eastern Semi-Final finishing the season with 5 defensive tackles and 15 special team tackles. 2006 forced Mike to miss four games with a knee injury but he started 13 regular season games at middle linebacker had five defensive tackles and two quarterback sacks in week 1 alone. He finished the season with 33 defensive tackles, three special team tackles and two quarterback sacks. In 2007 Mike started two games at middle linebacker and also dressed in both playoff games as well as the Grey Cup game with four defensive tackles in the West Final. He dressed in all 18 regular season games and the West Semi-Final as a backup linebacker in 2008 and finished the season with 17 defensive tackles, seven special team tackles and a quarter back sack.

Mike was also the recipient of the 2008 Mosaic Community Award presented annually to the Rider who contributes the most to his community. In 2009 Mike started eight games at middle linebacker, he was named CFL Canadian Player of the week in week 14, had five defensive tackles, two special team tackles in the Grey Cup game and finished the regular season with 34 defensive tackles, nine special team tackles and two tackles for a loss. He was again honoured to be the 2009 recipient of the Mosaic Community Award. Mike dressed in all 18 regular season games in 2010 as well as both playoff games and the Grey Cup game as a back-up linebacker. He started the West Semi-Final at middle linebacker and finished the season with 29 defensive tackles, seven special team tackles, four quarterback sacks and a fumble recovery. Mike was also the inaugural recipient of the CFL's Jake Gaudaur Veteran's Award. In 2011 Mike dressed in all 18 regular season games as a back-up linebacker and finished the regular season with 13 special team tackles, seven defensive tackles and one interception.

Mike is a veteran Rider and spends the off-season in Regina with his wife Laura and their children. He also works for Investors Group and is very active in his community devoting many hours to charities, including one very close to his heart, Jesse's Journey – A foundation that provides funding for research into Duchenne Muscular Dystrophy. Mike and his wife lost their 3 year old son in his sleep, due to a seizure, in February of 2010. They are both committed to helping raise the funds to find a cure, for Duchenne Muscular Dystrophy, in memory of their son and for all of the children and families who suffer from the disorder.

Pictures courtesy Mike McCullough and the Saskatchewan RoughRiders