HAMILTON — After eight years in the Canadian Football League with the Hamilton Tiger-Cats (2013-18, 20) and Calgary Stampeders (2019), Tiger-Cats defensive back Courtney Stephen announced his retirement Thursday prior to the start of the 2021 season.
Stephen, 31, played in 113 career games over his CFL career, registering 219 defensive tackles, 54 special teams tackles, two quarterback sacks, 12 interceptions and seven forced fumbles. The 6-1, 199-pound native of Brampton, Ontario also appeared in nine playoff games for the Tiger-Cats, including the 102nd Grey Cup game, and was the team’s nominee for the CFL’s Jake Gaudaur Veterans’ Award in 2016. Stephen was originally selected by Hamilton in the first round, eighth overall, in the 2012 CFL Draft.
“Courtney has been a consummate professional since joining our organization in 2013 and we were fortunate to have him,” said Orlondo Steinauer, Head Coach of the Tiger-Cats. “He was a great competitor who was willing to contribute in ways that were always best for the team. While his contributions on the field will cease, his presence in the community will carry on where he was a steady presence throughout his career. We thank Courtney for his commitment to Hamilton, and further wish him and his family the best in his new life chapters.”
Prior to joining the Tiger-Cats, Stephen suited up in 16 games over three seasons (2010-12) at Northern Illinois University, recording 17 defensive tackles (12 solo, 5 assisted), an interception and a blocked kick. Before transferring to Northern Illinois, Stephen posted 80 defensive tackles (69 solo, 22 assisted), two quarterback sacks, six interceptions, 13 pass knock downs and two forced fumbles in two seasons at Wilfrid Laurier University (2008-09). He earned First Team OUA All-Star and Second Team All-Canadian honours in 2009, and was named a Second Team OUA All-Star and WLU Rookie of the Year in 2008.