REAL NAME: Don Callis
BORN: Winnipeg, Manitoba
PRO DEBUT: 1989 – (WFWA)
6’2″, 210 pounds
AKA: The Natural; Don Casablanca; The Jackyl, Cyrus
The mystery has been solved. The Jackyl — an up-and-comer in the WWF — is actually Don Callis, a good Canadian boy. Not that he wants to talk about his past.
During a February 26, 1998 chat on AOL, he said:
“I don’t like to talk about the man that I was, I like to talk about the man that I have become. Suffice to say, that I have come from an intellectually elite background not conducive to the professional wrestling industry. However, the truly great men of history were born with one set of goals to which they uniquely are suited to achieve. I am the one person in the WWF who is capable to doing to perfection everything in the industry from talking, managing, wrestling, booking to tv production and I had no choice but to follow the path that was set out for me.”
He debuted in 1989, and quickly became a known quantity, and eventually, a hot property.
His WWF role didn’t showcase his wrestling skills — he is accomplished in the ring and has a fan in Rick Martel, who in an April 1998 interview said, “I liked the way he wrestled. He was a pretty exciting character. He could have some pretty exciting interviews. I saw there was something here, some potential.” The two actually teamed up together in Winnipeg and in the Maritimes as the Super Models.
Trained by Tony Condello, Callis started his career as a fan favorite, but after only months was turned heel.
So the heel Callis took on a manager, the Golden Sheik, and teamed with the Psycho as the “Mercenaries of Mayhem.”
From there, he moved into singles competition, and won the WFWA Canadian Heavyweight title in November 1990.
Callis feuded with E.Z. Ryder and lost the title to him. He regained the title in May 1991 and started a prolonged series against Jim Brunzell.
In February 1992, Callis was stripped of the WFWA title for conduct unbecoming a champion, but regained the title from Chi Chi Cruz in August 1992. He then lost and regained the title from Brunzell, and also switched the belt with Steve Rivers.
Besides being a star for the WFWA, he was also matchmaker for the group. Not long after he took over, the group changed its name to the IWA.
In June 1994, Callis started prolonged series against Rick Martel. At one point, he also formed a heel alliance with Bad News Allen, and was the architect behind Chris Jericho vs. Lance Storm.
Callis’ first WWF tryout was in Wisconsin in June 1996. He didn’t get hired, and that fall went on a three-week tour with Japan’s WAR.
After years of slogging it out in Winnipeg, and other exotic locales like South Africa and Lebanon, Callis debuted with the WWF on September 20, 1997 as The Jackyl, manager for the Truth Commission.
His stay in the WWF was a frustrating mess, and he never caught on in any of his roles.
In early 1999, after parting company with the WWF, he debuted in ECW as Cyrus.
Thanks to central Canada’s leading wrestling expert, Vern May of Canadian Wrestle-Media for his help with this bio.