Player's Own Voice

Player's Own Voice podcast: Bo Levi Mitchell

The Player's Own Voice podcast is dropping new episodes before, during and after Tokyo 2020. This week: Calgary Stampeders quarterback and two-time Grey Cup champion Bo Levi Mitchell.

Stampeders' star is chomping at the bit for CFL's return

Calgary Stampeders quarterback Bo Levi Mitchell is seen during a game against the Montreal Alouettes in 2019. (Graham Hughes/The Canadian Press)

Bo Levi Mitchell is back in business. He had his banged-up shoulder fixed during the CFL's pandemic furlough and he's raring to quarterback Calgary to another Grey Cup.

Even though the two-time league MVP is known for his cannon arm, he takes a back seat to no one in the conversation department. Settling in behind the mic with Anastasia Bucsis on Player's Own Voice podcast this week, Bo holds forth on football in Texas, and his ownership of high school records in that state. He leads us through the highs and lows of his college campaigns. How low and how high, you ask? He threw the most interceptions in the NCAA one year and became an FCS champion in the next.

Bo envisions an XFL-CFL future, with gambling, The Rock, and Drake or Biebs luring younger eyeballs back to the gridiron. And he's all-in for the Canadian game, by the way. The big field, three downs — those are sacred once the two leagues get serious about matchmaking.

He's also got a good, blunt assessment of economics and the NFL. When is major money a major problem? When it scares owners into dangerously slow development of new players. What if the backup quarterback is sharper than the starter who's on a $90 million US contract? Owners don't care for looking like they overpaid.

Bo Levi Mitchell is a bit of a lightning rod. He's probably never going to get hugs on the streets of Saskatchewan, but he's also never going to zip it for fear of riling the critics. And he's in fine form today. 

Something new from Player's Own Voice this season: this will be CBC Sports' first podcast to lead into, go straight through and then follow up after the Summer Olympics. We're stoked to sit down with athletes at the pinnacle of their careers.

Like the CBC Sports' Player's Own Voice essay series, POV podcast lets athletes speak to Canadians about issues from a personal perspective. To listen to the entire fourth season, subscribe for free on Spotify, iTunes, Google Podcasts, Stitcher, Tune In or wherever you do your other podcast listening.

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