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OTTAWA — The Ottawa REDBLACKS announced that Mike Benevides has been hired as the team’s Defensive Coordinator, it was announced on Tuesday.
The Toronto native and three-time Grey Cup champion brings to Ottawa a wealth of CFL knowledge gained over the last 19 years with three different teams.
“We are excited to bring Mike on board as our defensive coordinator. Mike has been a successful assistant coach as well as a Head Coach in our league,” said REDBLACKS’ Head Coach, Paul LaPolice. “He has a vast background in CFL football and his input will be very valuable to our staff and our players. Our players will also enjoy working with him on a daily basis.”
Benevides started his CFL coaching career as a defensive assistant with the Calgary Stampeders in 2000. He was promoted to special teams coordinator and linebackers coach in 2001, a season that was capped by the Stamps’ 27-19 victory over Winnipeg in the 89th Grey Cup. Benevides moved-on to the BC Lions as the team’s special teams coordinator and linebackers coach between 2003 and 2007 and earned his second Grey Cup ring in 2006 when the Lions defeated the Montreal Alouettes 25-14. He then began a four-season stint as the Lions’ defensive coordinator and linebackers coach in 2008 and after winning his 3rd Grey Cup in 2011, he was promoted to head coach. In 2012, Benevides guided the Lions to a first place finish in the west with a 13-5 regular season record and in his three-seasons at the helm, the Lions were a combined 33-21. Benevides moved-on to the Edmonton Eskimos in 2016 as the team’s assistant head coach and defensive coordinator and in his 3rd and final season with Edmonton, he also assumed the role of linebackers coach.
“I’m extremely excited to join the REDBLACKS organization,” said Benevides. “ I look forward to working with Paul, the rest of the staff, as well as the REDBLACKS players.”