The Saskatchewan Huskies and Laval Rouge et Or face one another, Saturday, November 26th, 2022 at 1 pm EST at Western Alumni Stadium in London, Ontario. Each team in this matchup represents the best USports talent from their respective provinces. Both teams have played well all season with the Huskies winning the Canada West conference with a 7-1 record, and Laval winning the RSEQ with a 7-1 record.
Statistically, these teams have been similar all season concerning production on offence and defence. The difference between these teams is an overall commitment to athletics made by their respective institutions. When this game kicks off the resources these teams have available will not be the deciding factor, it will come down to which team can limit their mistakes and make the plays down the stretch.
Overview of the Saskatchewan Huskies
This is the Huskies’ 11th appearance all-time in the Vanier Cup, and they are 3-7 in their previous 10 appearances. The Saskatchewan offence is led by quarterback Mason Nyhus, Nyhus is the national leader in passing yards/game averaging 348 passing yards. The Huskies’ offence currently averages 30 points/per game.
The Saskatchewan defence has been a solid unit only giving up 14.9 points/per game. The Huskies had 10 Canada West all-stars this season. The head coach Scott Flory has built his team with the best talent from the Saskatchewan province, and he was a product of that talent pool winning Vanier Cups with the Huskies in 1996 and 1998.
Overview of the Laval Rouge et Or
This season represents Laval’s 14th appearance in the Vanier Cup, and they are 10-3 in previous Vanier Cup appearances. The Rouge et Or offence is led by quarterback Arnaud Desjardins who has produced the second-highest passing yards/per game with an average of 320 passing yards/per game. The Rouge et Or defence has played at a high level all season giving up only 14.0 points/per game. The Rouge et Or boasts 11 RSEQ all-stars in 2022. Head Coach Glen Constantin is the winningest coach in USports football with 201 wins. Since 1996 Laval has established the highest standard for USports football in Canada.
How the Saskatchewan Huskies Can Win the 2022 Vanier Cup
The success of the 2022 Saskatchewan Huskies has been a product of a consistently productive offence. The Huskies will need to come into the Vanier Cup with an attacking mindset. If they play a conservative game they will most likely keep the game a low-scoring affair, and any mistake they make will be magnified.
This is how the game played out in 2004 and 2006 when Saskatchewan came up short against Laval, in 7-1 and 13-8 losses. Saskatchewan is returning to the Vanier Cup for the second year in a row after losing to Western 27-21 in 2021. For the Huskies to get the win, they will need to attack both sides of the ball and make their breaks. They will then need to make Laval suffer for their mistakes and keep the pressure on Laval. The Huskies need to come in with a scoring mindset and their best chance to win is in a high-scoring shootout.
How the Laval Rouge et Or Can Win the 2022 Vanier Cup
Laval will need to make plays while managing risk on offence. The defence of the Rouge et Or has pressured their opponents into making mistakes producing 15 safeties on the season. The defence has not produced a defensive touchdown this season, and this could become a deciding factor in the game.
On Laval’s side is the tradition of dominance that this program has been built on. In big games, many times the game is decided by which team expects to win regardless of the conditions of the game. Since 2010 the Rouge et Or have won the Vanier Cup 4 times and only lost in 2010 to McMaster 41-38 in overtime. If the game ends up being a hard-fought low-scoring game they will win the game. If they can force Saskatchewan to turn the ball over then they will win this game.
Prediction: Laval 21 Saskatchewan 18
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