Former Calgary Stampeder Mike Labinjo dies at 38

Former Calgary Stampeder Mike Labinjo died in Calgary on Saturday. File/Global News

A member of the Calgary Stampeders 2008 Grey Cup championship team has died.

Mike Labinjo passed away in his sleep Saturday morning in Calgary at the age of 38.

“We are deeply saddened to learn of Mike’s death,” said John Hufnagel, Stampeders president and general manager, in a news release.

“He was a big man with a big personality to match and he was a key part of our Grey Cup championship team in 2008,” he added. “The team offers its condolences to Mike’s family and friends.”

Labinjo, a Toronto native, played four seasons with the Stampeders after a three year career in the NFL.

He was drafted by Calgary in 2003 but later headed south of the border to play a total of 10 games for the Philadelphia Eagles and the Indianapolis Colts.

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Mike Labinjo, sporting #42, was a “standout in the 2008 West final win over the BC Lions,” the Calgary Stampeders said on Saturday. TSN

He joined the Stampeders in 2007 and stayed with the team until 2010. In 44 games with the team, the defensive lineman recorded 61 defensive tackles including nine tackles for loss, seven special-teams tackles, six sacks, seven knockdowns and two fumble recoveries.

In a news release, the red and white said Labinjo was a standout in the 2008 West final win over the BC Lions, recording three sacks and a forced fumble plus making two touchdown-saving stops as part of a critical goal-line stand.

Labinjo stayed in Calgary after his playing career, working at Solengo Capital and FirstService Residential.

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