At the start of the season, there were four teams that were always among the favourites for the 2010 Yates Cup. Those four teams finished in the top four in the OUA regular season standings. And those four teams are the only ones left standing as we enter the second-last week of OUA football play. This week is the OUA semi-finals. Top seeded Ottawa will host the Laurier Golden Hawks while regional rivals do battle as McMaster travels to London to face the Western Mustangs.
#4 Laurier Golden Hawks (5-4) at #1 Ottawa Gee-Gees (7-1) [1:00 PM]
At first glance, this game might be a bit of a mismatch. The Gee-Gees beat the WarHawks by 23 points only four weeks ago and are well-rested heading into this week’s game. However, the Hawks kept their regular season game close for the first three quarters. Then the Gee-Gees put up 27 unanswered to blow the game open. The Hawks are coming into this one-off a gimme quarter-final win over Guelph. Momentum might be on Laurier’s side but I don’t think they have much hope here. However, anything can happen in the OUA playoffs. I recall the 2008 playoffs when Ottawa upset Queen’s on their home turf. That one came out of no where. Apart from the Toronto loss, the Gee-Gees have looked like the class of the Ontario field this season, even if the CIS Top 10 disagrees with that statement.
TV: The Score
Online: Radio Laurier
#3 McMaster Marauders (7-2) at #2 Western Mustangs (7-1) [4:30 PM]
These two teams met in Week 3 in London with Western decimating their QEW rivals 50-19. The next week, Mac gave Ottawa a run for their money but lost. After that, the Marauders dominated their opposition including Queen’s in last week’s quarter-final. Western’s biggest hurdles will be complacency and rust. They haven’t played a real game since playing Guelph in Week 5. Since then it was Queen’s, bye, York, Toronto, bye and now Mac in the playoffs. And having already dominated Mac once, we could see them play a U of T-like first half. There’s a chance they could have a sense of entitlement heading into this game and look right to a potential Yates Cup matchup against Ottawa. Greg Marshall has to keep his troops in line if they’re to beat his former team.
TV: The Score
Radio: CHML 900 AM (Hamilton), CJBK 1290 AM (London)
Other CIS Playoff Games:
AUS Semi-Final – Acadia Axemen (4-4) @ Mount Allison Mounties (4-4)
QUFL Semi-Final – Bishop’s Gaiters (5-4) @ Laval Rouge et Or (9-0)
QUFL Semi-Final – Sherbrooke Vert et Or (5-4) @ Montreal Carabins (6-3)
Canada West Semi-Final – Alberta Golden Bears (3-5) @ Saskatchewan Huskies (6-2)
Canada West Semi-Final – Regina Rams (5-3) @ Calgary Dinos (6-2)
CIS/OUA News and Notes
The latest batch of CIS football rankings came out on Tuesday. Laval stays on top of the rankings as they have every week this season. Western holds onto second spot. Ottawa sits in fourth place. The McMaster Marauders were the only team in last week’s Top 10 that played a playoff game. That has more to do with the OUA’s schedule that anything else but it bumped them up to 6th in the polls. Wilfred Laurier was essentially in 11th as the team that got the most votes but didn’t make the Top 10.
Former St. Mary’s Huskies pivot Jack Creighton appears certain to be on the move to the OUA after leaving Halifax after being benched earlier this year. Greg Layson says that Creighton has been in touch with the Guelph Gryphons coaching staff and has expressed an interest in joining the team. Given Guelph’s inconsistency offensively this season and the fact that neither Chris Rossetti or Luke Nangle seemed to set to take the Gryphs to the Yates Cup, Creighton would be a good fit. Of course, he could probably find starting spots in Waterloo, Toronto and York next season if he wanted them. If he’s willing to wait, he might be able to slide into roles at Ottawa and Western as well.
OUA Regular Season Standings
1. Ottawa Gee-Gees (7-1)
2. Western Mustangs (7-1)
3. McMaster Marauders (6-2)
4. Wilfred Laurier Golden Hawks (4-4)
5. Guelph Gryphons (4-4)
6. Queen’s Gaels (3-5)
7. Toronto Varsity Blues (3-5)
8. Windsor Lancers (2-6)
9. York Lions (0-8)
Note: Information on broadcasters has been pulled from athletic department websites, the OUA website, and various articles read during the week. We make no guarantees over the completeness or accuracy of the listings.