We have several interesting matchups in CIS football to watch this weekend. The RSEQ and Canada-West will start Week 2 play, while the OUA will play Week 3, and the AUS conference will finally begin its first week on Saturday. Here are the some games to watch in each conference.
CIS Football to Watch this Weekend
RSEQ: Concordia Stingers vs. Laval Rouge et Or
On Saturday, September 10, the Concordia Stingers will have their home opener against the Rouge et Or. The Stingers moved to 1-0 last week when they beat the McGill Redmen 30-16. Meanwhile, the Laval Rouge et Or lost their home opener last Saturday, 24-21 to Universite de Montreal Carabins.
This season, the Stingers are looking to move up the RSEQ ladder, and the best way to make that next step would to beat the powerhouse Rouge et Or. The Rouge et Or are looking to bounce back from last week’s disappointing lost. Rouge et Or quarterback Hugo Richard was solid in last week’s loss as he threw for 286 yards along with two touchdowns. The running game with Christopher Amoah was also present in the loss as he rushed for 84 yards on 16 carries. The Rouge et Or defence struggled last week as they give up 475 total yards of offence to the Carabins. They also only forced one turnover in the loss.
The Stingers are led by their talented quarterback, Trenton Miller. Last week, Miller struggled in the first half, throwing two picks. In the second half, though, Miller was a different quarterback. He threw two touchdown passes in the fourth quarter and finished with 375 yards and three touchdowns. The Stingers defense was sensational in forcing turnovers last week: they had six, including two interceptions and fumble recovery by linebacker Samuel Brodrique (CIS defensive player of the week). The Stingers’ only weakness last week was their running game, with Jean-Guy Rimpel gaining only 51 yards on nine carries.
It will be interesting to see how the Rouge et Or offence responds to a powerful Stingers defence. The quarterback duel between the top quarterbacks in the RSEQ should also make a great fireworks show.
OUA: McMaster Marauders vs. Ottawa Gee-Gees
The McMaster Marauders head into the nation’s capital as the top dog in the OUA after winning their first two games. The Gee-Gees are trying to prove that they are a top tier OUA team, but will have to prove that against the powerful Marauders team on Saturday afternoon. Last week, the Gee-Gees creamed the Waterloo Warriors, 65-1.
Both Marauders and Gee-Gees are led by their offences. The Gee-Gees average 499 yards per game while the Marauders average 326. The key in the game will be the play of the two quarterbacks, Asher Hastings and Derek Wendel. Hastings in two games this season has thrown for 643 yards with five touchdowns for the Marauders, while Wendel has 389 yards and five touchdowns in one game for the Gee-Gees. The two quarterbacks are regarded as the best in the OUA. Whichever quarterback has the better game, his team will be victorious on Saturday.
Canada-West: UBC Thunderbirds vs. Calgary Dinos
This is a rematch of last season’s Hardy Cup final. Both the UBC Thunderbirds and Calgary Dinos come into Friday’s game with 1-0 records. The Thunderbirds beat Alberta Golden Bears 39-24 on Saturday and the Dinos beat the Manitoba Bisons 23-14 last Thursday.
The two quarterbacks, Michael O’Connor and Jimmy Underdahl, were solid in their teams’ wins last week. O’Connor threw for 275 yards with three touchdowns in the UBC win while Underdahl passed for 242 yards with one passing and one rushing touchdown in the Dinos win.
Both quarterbacks have excellent receivers, especially Trivel Pinto for the Thunderbirds and Austen Hartley for the Dinos. Pinto had six receptions for 105 yards and one touchdown last week while Hartley had 14 catches for 145 yards and one touchdown.
The Thunderbirds defence struggled last week in stopping the run, and gave up 312 yards in the ground game. Expect the Dinos to attack them on the ground with Jeshrun Antwi. The Dinos surprised a lot of people last week as they had 185 yards on the ground. The Thunderbirds defence will concentrate on finding ways to force the Dinos to commit turnovers, as the Dinos offence lost three fumbles last week. This likely will be a battle between the two defenses and the offence who commits the fewest turnovers will win.
AUS: StFX X-Men vs. Mount Allison Mounties
This is a rematch of last season’s Loney Bowl finals in which the StFX X-Men stunned the Mount Allison Mounties. Both schools were tied for first place in the AUS in 2015. The two schools met last week in a pre-season tilt, in which the X-Men made an epic fourth-quarter comeback to win 18-17.
Both defences were great last week but each had three turnovers. The two starting quarterbacks both struggled, as Troy Downton threw for 105 yards along with two interceptions for the Mounties and Tivon Cook threw for 47 yards in limited plays for the X-Men. The Mounties defence give up 122 yards on the ground to the X-Men. Meech Lamirande led the way with 65 yards on nine carries for X-Men.
Expect the X-Men to try to continue their running game success on Saturday afternoon. With the Mounties on 313 passing yards last week, expect them to continue the air-raid against X-Men. It should be exciting game between two of the best teams in the AUS.