As each CIS football team is officially eliminated from playoff contention, we'll reflect on what they did this year and compare their results to our expectations.
Up next: York, who lost 51-2 to Guelph over the weekend.
Per-game stats (as of time of elimination):
Points for: 10.7
Points against: 43.0
Passing yards: 160.1
Rushing yards: 80.1
Passing yards against: 319.0
Rushing yards against: 211.0
Looking back at our preview questions:
Q: HOW will the coaching staff be able to rally a very young group of football players?
A: No matter who your coaching staff is, it comes down to who's on the field, and (sometimes more importantly) who else is on the field. Their only win this year was an overtime win over Waterloo, which, while amazing for York, was still over Waterloo. Did the coaches really rally the players to win that one, or was it a letdown that it took them more than 60 minutes to defeat a team that couldn't compete against anyone else?
That said, they kept it close against Toronto, who may make the playoffs, and Warren Craney et al. deserve some credit for keeping their young-and-new team competitive in two games out of seven.
Q: WHAT is the York Lions’ football identity?
A: In recent years, different OUA teams have taken turns running up multi-year losing streaks. York's time is over, at least for now. To most of us on the outside, there's no difference between 1-7 and 0-8, but it's a large and important distinction to many on the inside. They are not, at least for a little while, the doormats of the OUA.
Q: WHO will emerge as the de facto leader of the defense?
A: Possibly Marcus Grandison. Highly-regarded coming into his rookie year, Grandison led the team in solo tackles — an important contribution after the departed Andre Clarke (42 solo, 48.5 total) and Theo Feroiu (38, 52) combined for more than one-fifth of all tackles last year. He certainly will have the opportunity to establish himself further in coming years, more than he would on a contending team.