It did not come as a shock yesterday that after 20 years playing in the Canadian Football League, Als QB Anthony Calvillo announced his retirement. The announcement came just months after he suffered a season ending concussion vs the Saskatchewan Roughriders. Here is what he had to do to become one of the best QB's to ever play the Canadian game.
Calvillo fought through lots of adversity to get to the top of the CFL record books. Growing up in a rough neighborhood in Los Angeles, he used football to divert himself from what was going on. He was so talented that he got a scholarship to play at Utah State. He helped the school win its first ever bowl game. After not hearing from any NFL teams, he decided to play the Canadian game joining the Las Vegas Posse in 1994. A year later, he joined the Tiger-Cats as a backup to Matt Dunigan. After a couple of mediocre seasons, he was a free agent. After considering joining Saskatchewan, he decided to join the Als to learn from their starter at the time, Tracy Ham. After Ham retired, Calvillo took over the starting role in 2000 and flourished. He won three Grey Cups and virtually holds almost every record for a QB. He is both the CFL and Professional Football's all time yards leader with 79,816 yards, the CFL leader in touchdown passes with 455 and completions with 5892. However he accomplished this after going through thyroid cancer in late 2010 and having to take a leave of absence in 2007 to be with his wife after she was going through cancer herself.
All this to say, Anthony Calvillo did not give up on himself after what he went through and became an all time great. Thanks for the memories AC and enjoy your well deserved retirement.