Football Week 10 digest: Forces of nature — wind, rain and Davie Mason — alter early games


Ottawa 42, Guelph 37 —
Davie Mason channeled Earl Campbell, 1979, and put the Gee-Gees on his back to help them get through the kind of high-scoring game that's become a trademark of first-round OUA games. He ran 31 times for 327 yards, breaking Greg Marshall's twenty-eight-year-old playoff record by 10, setting up an all-613 semi-final next week in Kingston vs. the Queen's Golden Gaels.

If you're going down to the Limestone City, you need a Mason. That was terrible.

Ottawa is dangerous, they're very dangerous. Please keep in mind that this was Guelph and no disrespect, but as our season preview noted, "Defensively, they have to make sure that such a young team doesn't wear down late in the season: They gave up an average of 544 yards on defence over their final four games."

The Gryphons gave up 621 today. Greg Layson, our man at The Mercury, has much more over at Big Man on Campus, including Marshall's take on his record being broken in his hometown. Marshall was a fullback. Mason plays a kind of single-back position.

The Gee-Gees were, at least in the offensive and defensive phases of the game, full value for the win. Understandably, it's hard to resist the this-year's-Western motif, especially with a team with Ottawa's talent. It should be a great game, but Queen's plays the run much tougher and their quarterback distributes the ball better than Guelph QB Justin Dunk.

Meantime, Guelph .. Guelph, Guelph, Guelph, Guelph, Guelph. They simply didn't fight for that inch, to evoke the Al Pacino speech from Any Given Sunday.  Dunk accounted for all four TDs and 333 yards offence, which looks good in a press release. As for one the field, the dot-orgers, though, have made detailed note of his little peccadilloes ... holding the ball too long, forced throws, scrambling instead of dumping the ball off to a teammate — and it's not as if his receivers are talentless and aren't working to get open.

Vince Young analogies are a don't-go-there these days. Dunk, though, was supposed to be the OUA analog to Young as a Texas Longhorn, but in the big games he's been more like Young as a Tennessee Titans. Your fourth season is a little late to still be getting judged on potential — the results say his team is 0-2 on its home field in playoff games. (Talk about a Ewing Theory team if ever there was one.)

Laurier 29, McMaster 0 — Hi, I'm Ryan Lynch, who you might remember from such Golden Hawks football seasons as 2006 and '07. The wind reduced both teams' ability to pass with any effectiveness. Lynch, credit him for having stuck with it after a tough regular season, rushed 30 times for 229 yards — almost half his regular-season output — to help put the young Hawks into the OUA semi-final at Western (next week's University Rush tilt).

Mac was just generally flat, for reasons not entirely weather-related.


Concordia 17, Sherbrooke 3 —
It can be safely assumed weather was a factor. One touchdown was scored all day and the Stingers missed the convert, but that's better than missing a lot of tackles. Liam Mahoney ran for 132 yards and that only TD, and the Stingers won despite completing one pass all afternoon.

The best I can figure is that since three Q teams finished 5-3 and Concordia beat Montréal and Sherbrooke, the Stingers get home field next week against Sherbrooke. The Vert et Or, who seem to have had a second-half fade, beat Montréal.

Montréal 56, Bishop's 6 — The one common refrain with the Carabins is that they're a better team than they're generally given credit for, and they'll have a chance to prove it in a semi-final at Laval, where they lost only 17-6 in the season opener. That was a long time ago ... Montréal kept it close despite Laval's 4-0 edge in takeaways ... Les Bleus' Hantz Bourisquot had a 100-yard game that day despite the lack of a fully formed passing game ... the QB, Marc-Olivier Brouillette, finished the season with pretty nice numbers (7.8 yards per pass, 10-to-5 TD-INT ratio) ... could they give the Rouge et Or a game in a playoff at PEPS? They have played there enough that it should hold no terror for them by this point.

Bishop's Jamall Lee's final totals: 1,202 yards rushing, 10 TD, 6.6 per carry. Those a Hec Crighton-worthy numbers. It won't help that his team finished 3-5.

How about a hand for Hantz Bourisquot, who finishes the season with 807 yards on just less than seven yards per carry? Not too shabby a season.

Laval 67, McGill 8 — First things first, Benoît Groulx finished with a CIS-record 75.2% completion percentage after picking cherries, going 18-for-22 against McGill to finish 185-of-246. The score is pretty self-explanatory.

Matt Connell is down for 254 passing yards ... he finishes his career with 10,455, a record that might stand for some time, and set a single-season mark with 209 completions. Erik Galas finishes with 194 career catches.

Remember when McGill kicker Austin Anderson made five field goals in his first game and was the subject of much media attention, since his dad is the former NFL kicker Gary Anderson? McGill did not try a field goal again after Week 1. It's kind of amusing, if you can't smile at that ... you probably can't smile. McGill could really be in tough to win next season too.


Acadia 28, Mount Allison 25 —
The Axemen turned over the keys to rookie pivot Kyle Graves of Barrie, Ont., and the versatile QB finished with 206 yards passing and another 54 rushing to help wring a win out of a woeful season in Wolfville. Graves was a big get for the Axemen in recruiting, since the arms-and-legs war in the Atlantic conference are escalating, between Kelly Hughes at Mount A and Saint Mary's four-man rotation at QB.

Graves' debut included a 106-yard scoring pass to another freshman, 5-foot-7, 150-lb. receiver Nick Downey.

Hughes threw for 164 yards and ran for 92, which will make his Atlantic Conference MVP resumé look all the better.


Alberta 20, Calgary 9 — This was not the best way for the Dinos to go into the playoffs, but at least Anthony Woodson came back from his injury and had 13 carries. Matt Walter, when all is said and done, should have 904 yards, third in the country.
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1 comment:

  1. The Laurier-McMaster game was on TV and playing in the background at The CIS Blog's Waterloo headquarters. (Upcoming midterms precluded taking the 15-minute walk to watch the game in person.)

    Mac just couldn't do anything to stop the run, or tackle the guys who intercepted Fantham. It wasn't so much Laurier's offensive dominance as it was Mac's apparent belief that the game was two-hand touch. I'm not sure one can blame the wind for that.