Football: Figuring out who goes where for OUA's first round

The crazy part about the OUA's four-way tie with one week left in the season is that Western fans might have to cheer for Queen's on Saturday.

That assumes the Mustangs or anyone else really want a first-round bye (ask the 2008 Golden Gaels and the '07 Ottawa and Laurier teams how it worked out for them).

The OUA has a dream scenario, four 5-2 teams and all playing different opponents. Laurier hosts Queen's. McMaster hosts sixth-place Guelph (1 p.m., The Score) while Western (at U of T) and Ottawa (hosting Windsor) face teams who are simply playing for pride.

Poring over the OUA's PDF of tiebreaker formulas show there are a couple of instances where Western earning a bye hinges on Queen's beating Laurier. Record vs. common opponents would be the trump card, not head-to-head.

It's actually not a nothing game for Queen's on Saturday. A Queen's win increases Ottawa's chances of finishing third, reducing the chance of a fraught-with-fanboy-foreboding rematch in the Nov. 7 semi-final in Kingston.

Any crazy thoughts of some team pulling a Mike Keenan at the 1980 Memorial Cup move should be squashed faster than my hopes of dating fellow Napaneean Avril Lavigne, even if she is now single and out of the CHLOE folder.

The simplest way is to just go through the plausible scenarios.
  • All four win and finish 6-2: Laurier bye, Western hosts Guelph in the 6 vs. 3 quarter-final, fourth-place Ottawa hosts McMaster.

  • Mac, Western and Ottawa win: Western bye, Ottawa hosts Guelph, McMaster hosts Laurier

  • Laurier, Western and Ottawa win: Laurier bye, Western hosts Guelph, Ottawa hosts McMaster.

    Beating Queen's would give Laurier a 4-0 record vs. common opponents; the Mustangs and Gee-Gees have lost to the Golden Gaels and would be just 3-1.

  • Western and Ottawa win: Western bye, Ottawa hosts Guelph, Laurier hosts McMaster.
And it goes on and on.

OUA football playoff pairings? Clear as mud (Christine Rivet, Waterloo Region Record)
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