Mike Lyriotokis’s football career at UPEI began in the fall of 1974. He came to PEI from Amherst View, Ontario—one of three Ontario recruits among 22 rookies that year. Lyriotokis came to camp as a fullback, but coach Ed Hilton moved him to the defensive line because of his unique combination of size, strength, and speed. It was a move that opposing offences would dread. He earned MVP and Outstanding Lineman awards two years in a row, and was also recognized academically by being named to the Dean’s List. In 1977, he was named to the AUAA All-Conference team, and hopes were high that he’d make the CIAU All-Canadian team; but, unfortunately, this did not happen.
Local sports writer Don Morrison wrote, “What Jim Foley had been to the UPEI offence, Mike Lyriotokis has been to the UPEI defence.” Mike was drafted by the Ottawa Roughriders and attended training camp in the summer of 1978. He returned to UPEI for his final year, and, by season’s end, had won his 3rd AUAA All-Conference award. He was also selected as a CIAU All-Canadian, the first one ever from UPEI. As a result, he played for the Canadian All-Stars in the 2nd Can-Am Bowl in Tampa Bay, Florida, in January 1979. Mike Lyriotokis is now a social worker and lives in Stratford. His family still has strong UPEI connections. His wife, Peggy, works in the Robertson Library, and his daughter, Sarah, graduated from UPEI in 2003.