Doug Mitchell is a three-time Grey Cup champion who spent eight years in the Canadian Football League with the Hamilton Tiger-Cats and Montreal Alouettes in the 1960s and ’70s. He was a football star and national champion wrestler at the University of Western Ontario.
Mitchell was born in Harrow, England on July 14, 1942. He moved to Windsor in 1946 with his family.
In Windsor, Mitchell attended W. F. Herman Collegiate, where he excelled in the shot put and javelin as a member of the school’s track and field team. He qualified for the 1960 Canadian Juvenile (under 18) Championships, where he earned a bronze medal in javelin and finished in fourth place in shot put. Mitchell was also a standout on the football field who had tremendous success playing for Herman. He made the All-City First-Team in 1960 at centre and in ’61 at guard. He is a member of the Herman Hall of Fame.
Mitchell played one season with the Windsor AKO Fratmen, 1962, before moving to London to attend the University of Western Ontario. During his four-year career at UWO, he starred for the school’s football and wrestling teams. He was named an OUAA Football All-Star on three occasions (’64, ’65, and ’66) and won the OUAA Heavyweight Championship in wrestling in ’65, ’66, and ’67. Following his third title, he went on to also capture the CIAU Heavyweight Championship. He was named Western’s Athlete of the Year in ’67.
After university, Mitchell played for the CFL’s Hamilton Tiger-Cats from 1967 to ’73. He spent all of his seven seasons as the team’s starting centre, famously never missing a game due to injury. Mitchell won Grey Cups in ’67 and ’72 with the Tiger-Cats. He moved to Montreal for one final season of CFL play in ’74; he won a third Grey Cup with the Alouettes.
During his playing career, Mitchell taught and coached at Burlington Nelson High School between 1968 and ’78. He went on to further success coaching football at Mount Allison University, the University of Toronto, and Clarkson High School in Mississauga. He retired from the teaching profession in ’96.
Mitchell was inducted into the University of Western Ontario’s Hall of Fame in 1995.
He currently lives in Salt Spring Island, British Columbia, where, at the time of his induction, he was still coaching local high school football.