TORONTO -- Former Ohio football running back Maleek Irons (Chilliwack, British Columbia, Canada) has been selected with the 22nd overall pick in the third round of the 2019 Canadian Football League Draft by the Hamilton Tiger-Cats.
Irons becomes the first Bobcat to be picked in the 68-year history of the CFL Draft. He will be the fourth former Ohio player to suit up for the Tiger-Cats and the first since former quarterback Tyler Tettleton in 2014.
Irons finished his 2018 redshirt senior season at Ohio ranked second on the team with a career-high 831 rushing yards. His 75.5 rushing yards per game ranked as the third-highest average in the Mid-American Conference. He rushed for over 100 yards in a game four times last season, including a career-high 140 in a 58-42 win over UMass on Sept. 29. Irons also ranked third on the team with a career-high eight rushing touchdowns and rushed for at least two scores in a game three times. He helped the Bobcats post a 9-4 overall record (6-2 MAC). For his career, Irons saw action in 29 games and amassed 1,447 rushing yards and 16 rushing touchdowns on 252 attempts.
Prior to his arrival in Athens, Irons was a four-year member of the W.J. Mouat Secondary football team, finishing his high school career with 7,944 yards rushing and 98 rushing touchdowns. He earned Provincial Most Valuable Player honors following the 2012 and 2013 campaigns.
Hamilton is coming off of a 2018 campaign in which it went 8-10 overall, placed second in the CFL East Division and clinched a playoff berth. The Tiger-Cats rolled to a 48-8 win over the BC Lions in the Division Semi-Finals before falling to the Ottawa Redblacks, 46-27, in the Division Finals. Hamilton will be led by first-year head coach Orlondo Steinauer in 2019. The Tiger-Cats will open up the regular season on June 13 with a home game against the Saskatchewan Roughriders at Tim Hortons Field.