Milt Stegall: Wikis

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Milt Stegall
No. 84, 85     
Wide receiver / Slotback
Personal information
Date of birth: January 2, 1970 (1970-01-02) (age 40)
Place of birth: Cincinnati, Ohio
Height: 6 ft 0 in (1.83 m) Weight: 184 lb (83 kg)
Career information
College: MU
Debuted in 1992 for the Cincinnati Bengals
Last played in 2008 for the Winnipeg Blue Bombers
Career history
 As player:
Career highlights and awards
Career NFL statistics as of 1994
Receptions     4
Receiving yards     43
Touchdowns     1
Career CFL statistics as of 2008
Receptions     854
Receiving yards     15,153
Touchdowns     144
Stats at NFL.com
Stats at CFL.ca

Milton Eugene Stegall[1] (born January 25, 1970) is a retired American professional gridiron football player who played 17 years of professional football, three years in the National Football League with the Cincinnati Bengals and 14 years in the Canadian Football League with the Winnipeg Blue Bombers.

Stegall was an All-Star receiver for the Winnipeg Blue Bombers of the CFL. Spanning an illustrious 14 year career from 1995–2008, he is considered by many to be not only the greatest receiver but greatest player in CFL history and holds several major CFL records including receiving touchdowns, career receiving yards, and most touchdowns scored.

Contents

Early years

Stegall was born in Cincinnati, Ohio and attended Roger Bacon High School, where he was a letterman in football and track.

College career

Stegall attended Miami University, where he was a four-year football letter winner from 1988 to 1991. Stegall finished with 106 receptions for 1,581 yards, and eight touchdowns as a wide receiver. Because of his speed (he competed on Miami's track and field team where he holds the 3rd fastest 100 meter dash, 10.44 seconds, and 5th fastest 200 meter dash, 21.24 seconds) he was also a dynamic kick returner, setting a career record of 1,377 kick return yards which lasted until 2002, beaten by defensive back Milt Bowen, who like Stegall signed with the Cincinnati Bengals after college. All of these accomplishments garnered Stegall an honorable mention all-Mid-American Conference selection as a junior.

NFL career

Stegall signed as an undrafted free agent with the Cincinnati Bengals. He played 21 games over 3 seasons, where he had four receptions for 43 yards and one touchdown. He was primarily played as a kick returner though, where he totaled 446 yards off of 26 kickoffs and made five tackles on special teams. In the 1995 season, he was signed as a free agent by the Green Bay Packers, but was a late cut after a serious knee injury during the final days of training camp.

Blue Bombers

In 1995, Stegall decided to go north to the Canadian Football League and signed with the Winnipeg Blue Bombers where he played the final 6 games of the 1995 CFL season, obtaining 469 receiving yards, and two punt returns, one for 80 yards. In his first full season in 1996, he gained 613 yards receiving on 34 catches for 6 touchdowns.

Stegall started out as a wide receiver, garnering him an All-Star selection in the 1997 season after having a 1616 yard season. Soon however, Stegall made the switch to slotback which let him start the play closer to the middle of the larger field. Stegall flourished as a slotback, where in the CFL a player is allowed a running start before the play to gain momentum, being able to out run defenders with his impressive speed. Stegall would go on to get 3 more All-Star selections as a slotback, peaking in 2002 where he had one of the greatest individual seasons in CFL history. He led the CFL in receptions (106), receiving yards (1,896), yards from scrimmage (1,896), touchdowns (23), receiving touchdowns (23), 100-yard games (10), 100-yard receiving games (10), average yards per catch (17.9) and non-kicker scoring (140). He set a new league single-season record for touchdowns with 23 and a new league single-season record for receiving touchdowns, also with 23. All of these made him the obvious choice the CFL's Most Outstanding Player, which he won.

Stegall has continued his excellence throughout the seasons with the Blue Bombers. In 2005 at age 35, some thought Stegall's play would be on the decline, but he shrugged off critics by capping off the season with his 5th All-Star selection. Amidst endless offensive coordinator changes, as well as many head coach changes, Stegall still has remained a reliable, and at times unstoppable force for the Blue Bombers. Arguably one of the most popular Bombers of all time he was named to the All-Time 75th Anniversary Team. With the 2005 season over, there was speculation that Stegall would retire, but he soon announced that he would in fact be returning for, at least, one more year. In the 5th game of the Bombers' 2007 season, July 27, 2007, Milt Stegall became the all-time CFL touchdown leader on a 1-yard pass originally designed as a running play for the occasion, surpassing running backs Mike Pringle and George Reed, and went on to score another major before the end of the game to bring his total up to that point to 139 touchdowns. Stegall said that he was 99.9% sure that he was going to retire after then 2007 season[2] but on January 31, 2008, announced he was returning to the Bombers for another year. (He also signed for an option year in 2009)[3][4] Stegall has attributed his long and consistent career to a strict work out, which he does with Joe Montford.[5]

On September 12, 2008, Stegall initially tied Allen Pitts with a 16 yard touchdown reception to become the CFL's all time leader in career receiving yards. Shortly thereafter, Stegall surpassed Pitts with a highlight reel 92 yard touchdown catch and run, totaling 14,982 yards in his career.

Although he has played in the CFL for many years, has accomplished impressive numbers, and is considered by many to be the greatest receiver in CFL history, Stegall never won the Grey Cup, although he has reached the Grey Cup game twice: 89th Grey Cup vs. Calgary and 95th Grey Cup vs. Saskatchewan.[6]

Stegall officially retired from professional football on February 18, 2009.[7]

Media personality

Stegall is one of the most popular CFL players among the media, providing many quotable statements and answers for reporters.[8] He was voted the best looking man in the CFL.[9] He often gets praise from his teammates for his work ethic, personality, and leadership.[10] His nickname is "The Turtle Man" because his abdominal muscles ("abs") are shaped like the bottom of a turtle's shell (colloquially known as a "six pack").

Arguably his most famous quote is:

There's only six guarantees in this world. Death, taxes, trouble, Milt Stegall being on time, Milt Stegall being pretty, Milt Stegall being in tip-top shape. There are only six guarantees.

[10]

On June 3, 2009, it was announced that Stegall would join TSN as a guest analyst for their CFL broadcasts throughout the 2009 CFL season.[11]

Personal life

Stegall and his wife Darlene are the parents of two sons, Chase Hamilton and Colin Hunter. Stegall made it clear one of the conditions he would hold off retirement and return to playing was if his wife gave birth in the city. [12] He currently lives in Atlanta, Georgia.[5] In the off-season, Stegall invests in the real estate market and owns property in Cincinnati, Ohio and Atlanta.

Accomplishments

On July 20, 2006, Milt Stegall scored the winning 100-yard touchdown reception to lead the Blue Bombers to a 25–22 victory over the Edmonton Eskimos with no time left. Milt Stegall had 254 yards in the game, perhaps the best game of his career.

On December 12, 2006, Stegall signed a one-year contract extension to stay with Winnipeg for the 2007 season, but indicated that "there's basically no chance" that he will return beyond 2007.[13]

On June 28, 2007, Milt Stegall scored the game tying touchdown versus the Edmonton Eskimos to tie the all-time touchdown record, shared with George Reed and Mike Pringle at 137 Touchdowns.

On July 27, 2007, Milt Stegall became CFL's all-time touchdown leader after scoring his 138th touchdown against the Hamilton Tiger-cats. He managed to score two touchdowns that night, and stands at 144 Touchdowns as of October 28th, 2007.

On August 24, 2007, The Premier of Manitoba honoured Stegall with the Order of the Buffalo Hunt.

On August 24, 2007, The Mayor of Winnipeg honoured Stegall with the key to the city. He also was honoured with a street in Winnipeg adjacent to Canad Inns Stadium formerly called Arena Road (in reference to the former Winnipeg Arena) which was renamed Milt Stegall Drive.

On September 12, 2008 Milt Stegall becomes the leader in receiving yards moving past Allen Pitts previous record. The record is now 15,165 yards held by Milt Stegall.

Career statistics

Receiving
Year Team Receptions Yards YPC TDs
1995 Winnipeg Blue Bombers 25 469 18.8 4
1996 Winnipeg Blue Bombers 34 613 18.0 6
1997 Winnipeg Blue Bombers 61 1616 26.5 14
1998 Winnipeg Blue Bombers 32 403 12.6 7
1999 Winnipeg Blue Bombers 73 1193 16.3 7
2000 Winnipeg Blue Bombers 78 1499 19.2 15
2001 Winnipeg Blue Bombers 81 1214 15.0 14
2002 Winnipeg Blue Bombers 105 1862 17.7 23
2003 Winnipeg Blue Bombers 68 1144 16.8 15
2004 Winnipeg Blue Bombers 68 1121 16.5 7
2005 Winnipeg Blue Bombers 52 1184 22.8 17
2006 Winnipeg Blue Bombers 77 1252 16.3 7
2007 Winnipeg Blue Bombers 69 1108 16.1 8
2008 Winnipeg Blue Bombers 30 470 15 3
Total 14 Seasons 855 15165 17.8 147

CFL records

  • Most TDs in a career - 147
  • Most TD receptions in a career - 144
  • Most TDs in one season - 23 (2002)
  • Most TD receptions in one season - 23 (2002)
  • Most yards per catch in a season - 26.5 (1997)
  • Most yards receiving in a CFL career -15,071
  • Most yards in one season by a Bombers receiver - 1896 (2002)
  • Most 1000+ yard receiving seasons by a Bombers receiver - 10
  • CFL Most Outstanding Player - 2002
  • Named as receiver in top passing tandem in CFL history together with Khari Jones
  • Voted 15th of the CFL's Top 50 players of the modern era by Canadian sports network TSN.

Notes

  1. ^ http://www.pro-football-reference.com/players/S/StegMi00.htm
  2. ^ "Milt Stegall Putting Off CFL Retirement". cfl.ca. 2008-01-31. http://www.cbc.ca/sports/football/story/2008/01/31/milt-stegall.html. Retrieved 2008-04-14. 
  3. ^ "One More Year for Stegall". cfl.ca. 2008-01-31. http://www.cfl.ca/index.php?module=newser&func=display&nid=22679. Retrieved 2008-01-31. 
  4. ^ "Audio and Transcript of Stegall's Teleconference". cfl.ca. 2008-01-31. http://www.cfl.ca/index.php?module=newser&func=display&nid=22681. Retrieved 2008-01-31. 
  5. ^ a b The Sports Network - Canadian Football League
  6. ^ Turner, Randy (2009-02-18). "Father Time finally tackles Stegall". Winnipeg Free Press. http://www.winnipegfreepress.com/sports/football/bombers/father_time_finally_tackles_stegall-39770082.html. Retrieved 2009-02-18. 
  7. ^ Naylor, David (2009-02-18). "Stegall officially calling it quits". Globe and Mail. http://www.theglobeandmail.com/servlet/story/LAC.20090218.CFLSIDE18/TPStory/Sports. Retrieved 2009-02-18. 
  8. ^ TheStar.com | Sports | If Stegall quits he will leave a gaping hole
  9. ^ "Milt Stegall". Rosters. CFL.ca. http://www.cfl.ca/index.php/roster/show/id/13. Retrieved 2009-02-18. 
  10. ^ a b Ralph, Dan (2009-02-06). "Stegall ready to retire". Globe and Mail. http://sports.theglobeandmail.com/servlet/story/RTGAM.20090206.wsptstegall06/GSStory/GlobeSportsFootball/DAN+RALPH/. Retrieved 2009-02-18. 
  11. ^ http://www.tsn.ca/cfl/story/?id=280773
  12. ^ Stegall adds non-import to the roster
  13. ^ http://www.cbc.ca/cp/football/061212/f121233A.html

External links

Awards and achievements
Preceded by
Khari Jones
CFL MOP
2002
Succeeded by
Anthony Calvillo
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