Assistant Head Coach & Defensive Coordinator

Mark Washington was promoted to Assistant Head Coach & Defensive Coordinator of the Hamilton Tiger-Cats April 12, 2022, after serving as the defensive coordinator since 2019.

Washington has 23 combined years of Canadian Football League experience as a player (1997-2007) and coach (2008-19) and is a three-time Grey Cup champion (2002, 2006, 2011).

His defence followed up their historic 2019 campaign with another solid showing in 2021. Washington guided the Tiger-Cats to the league’s best run defence, limiting opposing teams to a league-low in rushing yards (1,115), rushing yards per game (79.6), rushes over 10 yards (28) and rushes over 20 yards (two) as well as leading the league in interceptions (17) and interception return touchdowns (three). His defence produced the 2021 East Divison’s Most Outstanding Defensive Player, Simoni Lawrence, who was nominated for the second consecutive season as well as three CFL All-Stars including Lawrence and defensive backs Jumal Rolle and Cariel Brooks.

In 2019, his first with the Tiger-Cats, Washington led a defensive unit that allowed a league-low and franchise record 344 points against and just 33 touchdowns, while also ranking second in the CFL in pass knockdowns (73), and third in quarterback sacks (54), turnovers forced (44), interceptions (22) and fumble recoveries (12). His defence produced the East Division’s Most Outstanding Defensive Player in linebacker Simoni Lawrence who led the CFL in defensive tackles (98) and defensive plays made (117), as well as four 2019 CFL All-Stars in Lawrence, defensive tackle Dylan Wynn, defensive halfback Richard Leonard and safety Tunde Adeleke.

The Washington, D.C. native joined the Tiger-Cats after 11 seasons with the BC Lions where he most recently served five years as Defensive Coordinator (2014-18) preceded by six seasons as Defensive Backs Coach (2008-13). During his tenure as a coach in BC, Washington presided over 18 West Division All-Stars and 11 CFL All-Stars from the defensive back position.

Prior to transitioning to the coaching ranks, the 5-9, 180-pound defensive back played five seasons for the Lions (2003-07) after six seasons with the Montreal Alouettes (1997-2002) where he began his CFL playing career.

A natural dressing room leader and familiar face in Lions community programs, Washington was recognized for his inspirational play and charitable deeds by the Lions in 2003 with the Fred Dietrich Award, followed by the CFLPA’s Tom Pate Award in 2006 for outstanding sportsmanship in addition to significant contributions to his team and community.

Washington attended Rutgers University and graduated with a degree in Industrial Engineering. He and his wife Judy have two children.



2022-Present Assistant Head Coach & Defensive Coordinator Hamilton Tiger-Cats
2020-2022 Defensive Coordinator Hamilton Tiger-Cats
2019 Defensive Coordinator & Defensive Backs Coach Hamilton Tiger-Cats
2014-18 Defensive Coordinator BC Lions
2008-13 Defensive Backs Coach BC Lions