Football: Projecting a University Rush schedule

In the absence of much to talk about, here's a bullet-point list of how The Score could arrange the University Rush schedule, presuming they pick it up on Sept. 12, the first week the OUA has Saturday games.

This schedule gets Western, Laurier and Queen's three appearances apiece in the regular season, with Ottawa appearing twice, while still leaving an opening for an out-of-conference game featuring the Calgary Dinos.
  • Week 2, Sept. 12, Laurier at Western: Use the KISS principle and start with the teams who have combined for four of the past five Yates Cups, especially since the Golden Hawks were much improved by the end of last season.

  • Week 3, Sept. 19, Queen's at Ottawa: The Score has to budget trips east of Toronto. It announced one trip to Queen's in Kingston and one to Ottawa at the outset of the '08 season, and later made a second trip to Kingston. This would be a rematch from the 2008 playoffs and an early chance to introduce viewers to Gee-Gees QB Brad Sinopoli. Ottawa-Queen's is a decent rivalry.

    Waterloo-Laurier or Western-Windsor, the latter of which is a night game, are also options if the OUA and The Score want to get the Warriors and Lancers some exposure. Granted, it's not clear why that would be an objective.

  • Week 4, Sept. 26, Western at Guelph: A good chance to get the Gryphons on. Laurier-McMaster is also a strong possibility, although that would mean having to give up one of the two good October matchups involving the Golden Hawks (sees Weeks 5 & 8).

  • Week 5, Oct. 3, Ottawa at Laurier: The Score aired these two teams at the same point last season, with the Golden Hawks winning a 22-21 thriller (don't ask which contributor to this site missed that one to take in an 80-0 blowout). Laurier and Ottawa also put on a good show in 2006, with the Gee-Gees having to come from behind for the win.

    Western's homecoming game vs. McMaster should also get some consideration, just to remind people that some universities still have homecoming football games [/bitter Queen's grad].

  • Week 6, Oct. 10, Manitoba at Calgary: There is an argument for doing a Canada West game, since the only Saturday game in Ontario and Quebec is Queen's at Waterloo. It wouldn't hurt The Score to air a Canada West regular-season game. It wouldn't come cheap, though.

    (Just a note: The bowl matchups are QUFL-OUA and Canada West-AUS this season. Hat tip to Ben Matchett from the U of Calgary. I was evidently a year ahead.)

    Toronto-McMaster is the most appealing of the three Thursday matchups, since the improving Varsity Blues or the Marauders have yet to be slotted in.

    Go ahead and laugh about Queen's and Waterloo being the only ones playing on the Saturday of Thanksgiving weekend. The two nerdy engineering schools' students are too busy studying to go home for the weekend, much less attend a football game.

  • Week 7, Oct. 17, Western at Queen's (1 p.m.) and McMaster-Windsor (7 p.m.): How can you not have the rivalry game? Adding a second game also makes sure the Marauders and Lancers get covered in a game with playoff implications.

  • Week 8, Oct. 24, Queen's at Laurier: This week usually is left open in order to show the game with the greatest playoff implications. In that regard, it could be the Guelph-McMaster game.
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  1. The Score has a glorious opportunity to take the CIS brand and grow it. The Score is a distant third in Canadian sports networks and should realize that you have to innovative to get viewers. Take a chance on the CIS and really go after it. Broadcast Canada West games and Atlantic games in sports other than football. People would watch Saint Marys vs UNB in hockey if they could. Bite the bullet for a few years while people learn that CIS sport is a great product and then it would catch on. The Score could become synonymous with the CIS - right now the Score has no real identity, just a highlight machine.

  2. It would be a very big gamble by the score and more do more damage then good.As of now the score is known of rits ncaa coverage if they remove that how many viewers are left i would be guessing very very few.

  3. Didn't say drop NCAA coverage. Be known for university sport - CIS would be a nice compliment to their NCAA coverage.

  4. Hey, you're cheap on the QC and AUS :), just put Sherbrooke vs St. Mary's September 26th... will be a good match up...

  5. Hey Neate - love the idea of a national CW game. Just one clarification, the Mitchell Bowl is QUFL @ OUA this year, while CW visits AUS in the Uteck Bowl.

  6. Thanks, Ben (and thanks for nothing, Wikipedia).