Football: Sympathy for the Dinos; Huskies on a path to PEPS?

Some people probably saw the score, 34-13 for Saskatchewan, then saw the quotes and laughed until they almost hurled.

No. 1-ranked Calgary losing by three touchdowns at home is the kind of result that lets people say whatever they want to say. Especially when you see these kinds of passage in the game story:
" 'We went into the season ranked No. 1, and we still believe we are No. 1,' said Dinos defensive back Steve Truzak. 'But no excuses. They came out firing and hungry, and we weren’t able to match their intensity, and that’s what it comes down to.'

" ...'It's just terrible. We're just so used to being the top team, and we’ve done so well, and we worked so hard this off-season,' said Dinos linebacker Sam Hurl."
No doubt Hurl's "we're just so used to being the top team" line might be jarring to those who remember Calgary came second in the Canada West regular season and second in the Vanier Cup last fall.

No matter, the point is that it is a long season. Calgary had two key front-seven starters sitting out with injuries, linebackers Andrea Bonaventura and Geoff Paiement, not unlike Queen's in its season-opening loss (defensive tackle Kyle MacDonald and linebacker Alex Daprato). They'll have a further injury concern on offence after "star quarterback Erik Glavic and receivers Anthony Parker and Anthony Woodson — a trio of former All-Canadians — each left the game with injuries," as the Calgary Sun noted. Woodson, in case you weren't here for Andrew and Evan's liveblog, required a hospital visit but was not kept overnight.

That said, full credit to Saskatchewan. (I did put them No. 1 this week.) The Huskies ripped off gains of 69, 66 and 87 yards on their first three series. They have the kind of fifth-year QB which seems to be a requirement for one of the Other 25 to win the Vanier in Laurence Nixon and he is supported by a ton of skill-position talent.

It is prudent to wait a week or two before developing a plotline about the Huskies going into Laval for the Vanier Cup, a reversal of the Rouge et Or going to Griffiths Stadium back in 2006 when some of the Huskies fifth-year seniors were rosy-cheeked rookies. For one game, at least, it was very easy to picture Saskatchewan being on a path to seeking payback at PEPS.

In all honestly, the No. 1 pick was a toss-up. However, Saskatchewan coach Brian Towriss has never gone four consecutive seasons without a Hardy Trophy triumph since his first five years at the U of S, when he was pulling a struggling program out of the muck. The Huskies could be due.
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