Tim Burke returns for his second season with the Double Blue. With nearly four decades of coaching experience, his career on the sidelines began as an assistant coach at the University of Minnesota in 1977 before he spent nearly 30-years in the NCAA ranks. He first joined the CFL in 2005 and has been the defensive coordinator in four of the past seven Grey Cup championships, earning wins in 2009 and 2010.
Burke joined the Argonauts in 2014 and by season’s end his defence was one of the best in the CFL at stopping the run. His unit also recorded the third-most interception return yards (287) and boasted the third-lowest pass completion percentage (62.1%) by an opponent in the League.
Burke was appointed the defensive coordinator of the Winnipeg Blue Bombers for the 2011 season, and continued his impressive track record of producing stout defensive units. The Bombers finished first in 12 defensive categories including fewest first downs allowed (322), fewest yards of net offence allowed (5,420), most interceptions (25) and most QB sacks (55). The club went on to play in its first Grey Cup championship since 2007. In 2012, his defence ranked second in the league in QB sacks (43), and led the league at stopping the run allowing only 5.1 yards per rush attempt. Burke was named the interim head coach of the Bombers on August 25, 2012. On November 1, the interim title was lifted and Burke officially became the 29th Head Coach in Bombers franchise history. He remained as head coach of the team through the end of the 2013 season.
In 2009, his defence dominated the CFL, setting an Alouettes team record (18-game schedule) with just 324 points allowed and finishing first in 21 of 25 defensive categories. In 2008, Burke’s defence was top 3 in 16 categories. The 2010 Montreal Alouettes defensive unit flourished under Burke once again, finishing top three in 14 different defensive categories including first in fewest net rushing yards allowed (1,738) and most interceptions (25)
From 2005 to 2007, Burke was the Stampeders’ defensive backs coach and served as the Stamps’ defensive coordinator in the final stretch of the 2007 season. In 2004, he served as the defensive coordinator/defensive backs coach at Indiana State University. Prior to that, he was the defensive coordinator/secondary coach at Tennessee-Chattanooga, a job he accepted following two seasons at Kansas where he coached the Jayhawks’ defensive backs in 2000 and their defensive line in 2001.
Burke was also the defensive backs coach at Purdue, where he worked for four seasons. While with the Boilermakers, the defence allowed just 193.7 yards per game in 1998 and intercepted 23 passes in 1997 (the second most in school history). Previously, he spent two years at Wyoming, where he also coached the secondary. His 1995 unit led the WAC in pass defence.
He coached the Ball State Cardinals’ secondary from 1989 to 1991 and was their defensive coordinator from 1992 to 1994. While at Ball State, he helped the Cards win MAC Championships in 1989 and 1993 with berths in the California Raisin and Las Vegas Bowls, respectively. BSU was the MAC’s winningest team during the six years that he was at the school. Burke was the defensive coordinator/secondary coach for the North Dakota Fighting Sioux from 1986 to 1988 and held a similar post at South Dakota from 1982 to 1985.
A graduate of Luther College, he has also been an assistant coach at Appalachian State (1981), Gardner Webb (1980) and Minnesota (1977-79). A native of Cedar Rapids, Iowa, he has two sons, Kelly and Evan, and his wife is Rita.